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The property owner wants to develop up to 325 apartment units and 5,800 square feet of retail on an 11-acre site near SeaWorld Orlando.
The property owner wants to develop up to 325 apartment units and 5,800 square feet of retail on an 11-acre site near SeaWorld Orlando. (Orange County Property Appraiser/GrowthSpotter)

A company tied to car wash business owner Alan Schneider is prepping land near SeaWorld Orlando for future multifamily and retail development.

Schneider is working with Shridhar Rao, president of LandSmart Consultants, to convert most of the current uses of a narrow 11-acre strip of land across the TRYP by Wyndham Orlando hotel at 11539 International Dr. from hospitality to multifamily and retail commercial.

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In a letter submitted to Orange County, along with a Change Determination Request application, Rao said the owners would like to update the Development Plan to better fit a strong market demand for multifamily brought on by the pandemic.

“Due to changed economic environment, because of COVID-19, the owners would like to update from Hotel/Tourist Commercial to Multifamily and supporting Retail Commercial,” the letter said.

New Jersey-based Ridgewood Real Estate Partners is planning to sell more than 100 acres along International Drive to Park Square Homes.

Current entitlements allow for a mix of 95 multifamily units, 120 hotel units and 110 short-term rentals. The property owner is seeking to convert the uses to allow for a 325-unit apartment community with about 5,800 square feet of retail commercial uses.

The property is part of Parcel 11D of Orangewood PD, and is within the International Drive Overlay district.

Records show Schneider’s Sea Exchange Investments LLC paid $2 million for the site in 2019.

New York-based alternative investment firm Angelo Gordon was the seller.

The property is adjacent to the large vacation home master-planned community being developed by Park Square Homes that will rise on a large portion of the former Marriott Grande Pines golf course, just south of SeaWorld.

Plans for the Paradiso Grande Resort vacation home community call for a 10,000-square-foot clubhouse with a large outdoor pool and lazy river component, 178 townhomes and 245 detached vacation homes. Resort homes will range from a three-bedroom townhouse to 12-bedroom short-term rental home.

Over the last six years, at least three multifamily developments have been completed in the area.

Altamonte Springs-based Picerne Development Corp. was the first to get in on the action. In mid-December 2015 it paid $5.6 million for 16 acres and completed the 282-unit Oasis at Grande Pines apartment complex, which it later sold for $59.5 million to Dallas-based Lantower Residential. The apartment complex at 11128 Grande Pines Circle is now called Lantower Grande Pines Apartments.

The Bainbridge Companies bought 16.26 acres of the Grande Pines property for a little more than $7 million in 2016. It developed Solaya, a 322-unit multifamily complex at 11833 Westwood Boulevard.

That same year, Winter Park-based Atlantic Housing Partners paid $3.5 million for 11.92 acres for its 178-unit Westwood Park Apartments community at 11037 Laguna Bay Drive.

Schneider and Rao respectfully declined to comment on the story.

Schneider and business partner Eddie Moy opened the first Sweetwater Car Wash in Ocoee in 2009. Today, the car wash has locations in Dr. Philips, Apopka, near Millenia Mall and Windermere. Another location is planned near The Villages in Wildwood.

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Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at arabines@GrowthSpotter.com or (407) 420-5427, or tweet me at @amanda_rabines. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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