North American Properties aims high in entitlement hunt for site on N. I-Drive

Cincinnati-based North American Properties should close in the next 60 days on 16.5 acres on the northern end of International Drive, directly south of Orlando International Premium Outlets, after filing a master plan with City of Orlando for an aggressive entitlement mix of retail, office, apartments and two hotel towers, a partner with the company told GrowthSpotter.

Located at 5504 W. Oak Ridge Road, the land lies in the path of the I-4 Ultimate project's new flyover bridge that will link neighboring Grand National Drive across the interstate to Caravan Court, a block from one of the main entrances of Universal Orlando. The flyover is expected to open in Summer 2017.


"We have significant interest from multiple national tenants we've been courting. They've been to the site, and we're to the point where we are starting to discuss economics of the project," partner Shawn McIntyre said on Wednesday. "With the new interchange to be done by next summer, by then we want to have the infrastructure for our project under construction."

GrowthSpotter first reported on March 21 the developer had a contract on the property.


North American Properties filed a site plan and Framework Master Plan last week to develop a mixed-use power center with bigger and bolder entitlements than it forecasted back in March, requesting 130,000 square feet of retail/dining space, 20,000 square feet of medical office/clinic use, 800 hotel rooms and a 350-unit apartment complex.

The company's final use may come in below that, but they're aiming high now, and can fall back on the precedent of a previously approved master plan for the site that includes 1,750 multi-family units, an 800-room hotel and 100,000 square feet of ground-level retail.

The project's development team is revising architectural themes and landscape buffers for the development plan, and should receive comments back from city planning staff in the coming month, McIntyre said. The proposal should be considered by Orlando's Municipal Planning Board on June 21.

The two hotels will likely be full-service at 10 stories or more with at least 250 keys each, and the Class A multi-family development could be 250 units or more, McIntyre said.

Parking structures with up to four stories each will be necessary to meet demand not just from the hotels and apartments, but primarily the five retail outparcels. McIntyre believes those could attract national restaurants chains that will build large prototype units of 8,000-10,000 square feet.

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