UPDATED: August 1, 2016 3:05 PM — A group of local real estate law and development partners are planning eight high-end condominium apartments just north of Downtown Winter Park, and have yet to finalize pricing the project, choosing a general contractor or lining up a construction lender, a principal with the group told GrowthSpotter.
Paul Bryan, CEO of local developer Grover Bryan, Inc., formed the investment entity last fall with friends and co-investors Nancy A. Rossman, veteran developer and principal with Osprey Custom Homes, and James Willard, partner at Shutts & Bowen.
By way of Interlachen North Partners LLC, the trio paid $2.465 million last November for 0.48 acres at 503 N. Interlachen Ave. It's currently home to the 50-year-old Casa Disena Apartments, a 12,000-square-foot Mediterranean-style complex with 10 units.
The property lies just south of the Winter Park Country Club, and two blocks east of S. Park Avenue, roughly a five-minute walk to the city's downtown.
"The attraction to the location was pretty obvious when you're in Downtown Winter Park, on one of the prettiest residential streets in the city, and it's an urban setting already," Bryan said Friday. "So the concept of bringing some new residential product to market was appealing there."
The deal came together last year through long-standing relationships the buyers had with Eric Rosoff, head of Winter Park-based Eric Rosoff Investment Properties, who was principal in the family partnership that owned the site.
Michael O'Shaughnessy of Michael O'Shaughnessy Real Estate Brokers represented the buyers, and helped introduce them to the property.
"(Rosoff) was working with Michael Winn of Winter Park Land Company, also someone we knew, and we specifically sought out the property because we viewed it as one of the last remaining parcels that could be redeveloped in Downtown Winter Park for residential," Bryan said.
The group is now seeking Conditional Use approval from Winter Park to redevelop the property with eight new residential condominiums, whcih would total 23,385 square feet.
The existing apartment building would be demolished. In its place, a contemporary designed three stories with three units on the first two floors, and two more on the third floor. Units would range from roughly 2,900 to 4,600 square feet.
The request will be heard by the city's Planning & Zoning Board on Aug. 2. Planning staff are recommending approval of the preliminary and final CU approval.
Parking on the property would be underground, with elevator access to the three floors. That extra investment was chosen to not waste any space on the limited lot, Bryan said. It's also uniquely possible there because the land lies on a ridge that that is relatively high from the shore of neighboring Lake Osceola, meaning the water table is deeper than on most properties in the area.
City Council approval could follow P&Z in the coming two months, with the rest of this year spent on finalizing construction plans, pricing the project and preparing to bring it to market at year's end, Bryan said.
Slocum Platts is the architect. The group will decide on a general contractor after producing more complete drawings this Fall, and seeks a builder with "experience, capacity and depth of organization, integrity, examples of other quality work done in line with what we intend to deliver with these units, and then of course pricing is always a factor," Bryan said.
The investment partners will self-fund the equity portion of the development's capital stack, and will likely seek a construction loan. Bryan declined to estimate project cost at this time.
Marketing of the units will likely be done through a combination of the developer and a single real estate broker given exclusive right to market, Bryan said. No brokerage has been chosen for that role.