A Jacksonville-based developer is in the early planning stages for a new grocery-anchored retail plaza on church-owned land just south of Reunion Resort.
The Ferber Company met last week with Polk County planning staff prior to filing a subdivision permit for the 7-acre parcel at the southeast corner of Osceola-Polk Line Road and Lake Wilson Road, in Four Corners.
Senior Vice President Marlon Champion told GrowthSpotter the project is actually the second phase of a larger project that included the Wawa now under construction at the corner.
"We anticipate beginning construction on the second phase of our project in the First Quarter 2018 with the various retailers likely opening for business in the Fourth Quarter 2018," he said.
The Diocese of Orlando bought the land in 1971 for $100. Now it's worth nearly $3 million, according to the Polk County Property Appraiser. The church sold the 2-acre corner parcel last December to Ferber for $1.4 million.
Champion said Ferber expects to close on the remaining property as soon as permits are issued, likely before the end of the year.
Ferber plans to subdivide the remaining L-shaped parcel into five lots with a shared drainage pond. The site plan prepared by Bowman Consulting calls for two QSR pads, a 6,000-square-foot tire store (with 18 bays) and a 23,000-square-foot grocery store. The site is zoned Community Activity Center (CAX) and has conditional use permits already for a grocery store and two QSRs with drive-thrus.
Ferber has not disclosed names of the Phase 2 tenants. The new grocery store will compete head-to-head with Publix at Ovation, which is at the same intersection. CVS and 7-Eleven are right across the street.
"Regarding Ferber, we are a multi-generational real estate company that has been in business for 110 years specializing in niche development for leading retail, restaurant and service providers," Champion said. "We have multiple offices in Florida, as well as Georgia and New Jersey."
The company completed a Walgreens in Clermont in 2015 and is building another Walgreens at the intersection of Curry Ford and Goldenrod roads.
The Four Corners area is booming thanks primarily to two major resorts -- Reunion and ChampionsGate -- that are fueling growth in the region. Champion noted that Polk County is planning to widen Lake Wilson Road, which will improve access to the Ferber development.
About a half mile to the east is Lake Wilson Preserve, a 92-acre mixed-use project in Polk County that's fully permitted by FHC Development and approved for 116,228 square feet of commercial and 347 townhomes and apartments.