The new owners of a 2.21-acre parcel just off the Florida Turnpike in Ocoee say they'll begin construction this fall on a self-storage facility that has been permitted for that location since 2006.
Taylor/Theus Holdings, Inc. of Columbia, S.C., paid $1 million for the undeveloped lot at 981 Marshall Farms Road on July 27, according to a deed recorded Tuesday in Orange County. The seller, West Orange Investments Ltd., Inc., had been working with the city on building an indoor storage center there for more than 10 years.
Taylor/Theus asked for and was granted a revision to West Orange's vested plan to build a larger building with four floors instead of three.
"That area of Ocoee and the Orlando area in general has a lot of growth occurring," Taylor/Theus project manager David Ellison told GrowthSpotter. "We just felt like it would warrant a larger facility than what was previously approved."
The Ocoee development is one of four climate-controlled, self-storage buildings Taylor/Theus is building or plans to build in Florida this year. The company has one under construction in Hollywood, and two others in permitting in Tampa and St. Petersburg.
Ellison said site work on the Tampa and St. Petersburg facilities should begin in September. Oden Hardy Construction of Bradenton is general contractor on all the Florida projects.
Before making its move into Florida, the company had built self-storage buildings in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Virginia, Ellison said.
West Orange Investments, led by Orlando businessman John L. McLane Jr., got its original preliminary site plan approved for the Marshall Farms Road site in November 2006.
That plan contemplated a three-story, indoor storage unit with a footprint of 21,025 square feet, and total floor space of 63,075 square feet. Several years ago, the city vested the preliminary plan, according to Margie Rivera, Ocoee development review coordinator.
McLane could not be reached for comment this week.
After Taylor/Theus contracted to buy the property, the new owners asked for a revision of the vested plan to allow a four-story, 108,352-square-foot building with a 27,088-square-foot footprint. The Ocoee Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously recommended approval of the larger structure on April 11, and the City Commission approved the preliminary site plan on May 2.
Ellison said the company is 60 percent finished with its architectural and building plans. Once it gets final plan approval, site work will begin, probably in September.
The building should be ready in Second or Third Quarter 2018, he said. At that point, Taylor/Theus will turn operation of the units over to Extra Space, a REIT that also does third-party management.
Taylor/Theus has agreed to upgrade architectural features so that the building more closely resembles a modern four-story office building, rather than a traditional mini-warehousing facility, Rivera said.
"The applicant has agreed to an earth tone color scheme and will not use the predominant green color seen in other Extra Space storage facilities," she said.
Ellison said he doesn't think the Ocoee project will be the last for Taylor/Theus in Central Florida.
"We like the growth projections in Ocoee and Orlando in general," he said. "We're actively looking at other opportunities in Central Florida."