Polk County Developments

Local investment group scoops up 46 acres at ChampionsGate interchange

The 46-acre Blackwater parcel (outlined in red) sold in November for $2.73 million to an investment group managed by attorney Joe Ort. The site is centered between ChampionsGate and Reunion Resort, right at the I-4 interchange.

Real estate attorney Joe Ort leads a group of investors who paid $2.73 million in late November for 46 acres in the heart of the ChampionsGate-Reunion submarket, just southeast of the Interstate 4 interchange.

"We think it's in a good location, and we're looking at a lot of different options," Ort told GrowthSpotter. "We're looking at doing a mixed-use project but we don't have a concrete plan yet. We purchased it mainly for investment."


He said possible uses include multifamily, retail, hotel, medical and office space.

Ort said the group was attracted to the Four Corners submarket because of the booming warehouse corridor on U.S. 27, and the high-quality development taking place in ChampionsGate and Reunion.


"Large tracts in that market are disappearing," Ort said. "We see this as a critical piece in an absolutely wonderul location."

Another factor that drew the investors to that asset was the fact that 30 acres of the parcel is dry.

"If you look at the Department of Environmental Protection wetlands map, there's a pretty tight pinch in that area," Ort said.

David Calcanis, managing director of land services for Colliers International, represented the seller, Blackwater Holdings. He said the site had been on the market for quite a while, and there was considerable interest.

"If it's the seller's desire to close before the end of the year, that goes into consideration," Calcanis said. "I had other buyers. What made Joe and his group attractive is they were willing to close without any approvals in place."

Elevation Development had the property under contract last year at $3.2 million and planned a mixed-use concept with two hotels, retail and townhomes.

"You have a lot of developers who will go and put a piece of property under contract at a high price because they want to control it," Calcanis said. "But they typically want 180 days to line up their users and get their permits, then they try to come back and reframe the deal."

The Blackwater site lies on a stretch of C.R. 532 that's experiencing a building boon in high-end multifamily construction with recent completions of The Gate apartments, and Legacy Union Park right next-door.


In 2018, Garrett Companies will make its Florida market entry with a luxury, big house-style apartment community just down the road, and RIDA Development will start construction on its own luxury apartment complex, Preserve at ChampionsGate.

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