Responding to rapid residential growth and the newly-opened Florida Hospital Winter Garden, developers of two neighboring flex-office properties are pushing expansion plans on the southeast corner of Winter Garden Vineland Road and the Florida Turnpike.
David Colburn, manager of Winter Garden Vineland LLC, owns the West Orange Business Center at 1255 Winter Garden Vineland Road. The 10.14-acre parcel currently boasts five flex industrial/office properties totaling about 50,000 square feet.
Colburn bought the property via foreclosure in 2014 for $3.75 million, when it had 32,000 square feet of building space and was leased at 90 percent. An additional 18,000 square feet was added over the past two years.
Now fully leased, the business center is home to a United Cerebral Palsy school, professional offices, and a variety of e-retailers.
Colburn has about 2.5 acres of undeveloped land left on the property, on which he plans to build another 24,000 square feet of flex-office and 20,000 square feet of professional office space.
The expansion was recently approved by the St. Johns River Water Management District. It's currently in a second round of site plan review with Winter Garden's planning staff, and will require city council approval. A building permit application should follow in July or August.
Colburn aims to start vertical construction on the 24,000 square feet of flex-office late this summer. Site work and building pads are already complete on the property.
He already has his own general contracting company, Consolidated Construction Solutions, but will look to hire subcontractors in the coming months for all trades, including concrete and masonry, framers for the tresses, roofing and drywall.
Colburn projects his investment through buildout to reach $1.9 million for the new flex-office space and $2.6 million for the professional office. In the end, he'll have invested roughly $9.7 million overall in the property, since acquisition.
"We've been building this with funds out of pocket so far, but at some point soon we'll be looking at financing," he said.
The company has built one professional/medical office building of 8,350 square feet, of which 6,727 square feet has been leased, most of it by BrightStart Pediatrics.
Managing member Leslie Hurst says the company has the site pad ready, with architectural and building exteriors approved by the city. There's been enough interest recently from potential buyers and leasees that Hurst is now discussing with an attorney how to divide the pad into condo units.
"I have a medical group looking to acquire the second pad that's ready to go," she said. "They want me to build the building for them, do a full build-to-suit, and they would then purchase it.
"With the proximity to so many new homes and a draw of the new hospital, people are considering new locations like this (in Winter Garden), especially to expand their medical practices," Hurst added.