UPDATED: April 21, 2017 11:41 AM — Frankin, Tenn.-based UP Development will develop its final 13.18 acres west of the Mall at Millenia with City Furniture as anchor fronting Interstate 4, and four outparcels it will retain for sale or land lease.
The developer filed a Master Plan this week in Orlando for the site at 4751 Vineland Road, south of the Audi of South Orlando dealership, highlighted by a planned 120,000-square-foot City Furniture store.
UP's civil engineer Lochrane Engineering is working now with a partner to conduct a traffic study in order to petition for a traffic signal at the site, principal Scott Fish told GrowthSpotter. Infrastructure work should start on the property later this year following MP and construction plan approvals.
Plans for the four outparcels and their footprints have not been defined, Fish said. Any mix of retail, restaurant or small auto dealership could fit there, he added.
UP previously paid $15.5 million in February 2016 for 23 acres west of Millenia, comprised of two parcels at 4891 and 4751 Vineland Road.
It later subdivided and sold a combined 7.56 acres from the southern parcel for $10.5 million last Spring to auto dealers for Ferrari/Maserati and Porsche, which will build two large multi-story showrooms with integrated parking garages. Both dealership owners have construction plans under review by the city, Fish said.
City Furniture has been negotiating for months on the 6.1-acre Millenia site to serve as its second location in Greater Orlando, following its market entry in January with the purchase of 7.48 acres fronting I-4 in Altamonte Springs, where it plans a 109,500-square-foot showroom and neighboring 27,300-square-foot office building.
"We think (Millenia) is the best site in all of Orlando for the home furnishings industry," president Keith Koenig told GrowthSpotter on Thursday.
"People are willing to travel for their home furnishings ... and we found from our South Florida market that we would be able to draw from a large radius with a location like this. (The Mall at) Millenia will continue to be an important shopping destination for all of Central Florida, so being front and center on I-4 with easy access is exciting."
**UPDATE** City Furniture closed on its purchase of the 6.1 acres on April 20 for $11.3 million, per a deed filed in Orange County on April 21.
The company was also in negotiations for a third site in Kissimmee, a portion of an 85-acre site within the Flora Ridge PUD that lies across Osceola Parkway from The LOOP.
That project would have included a home furniture showroom and distribution center totaling 220,000 square feet, first reported here last August. But the deal has fallen through due to site development costs that exceeded expectations, Koenig said.
"So we're looking again for a third location to put a warehouse and showroom, and we're scouting different options," he said, noting that 10 to 15 acres with high visibility are key factors.
City Furniture may not rush to settle on that third regional location, as two new store openings estimated for 2018 and 2019 should make a big enough splash in the Greater Orlando market, Koenig said.
The Millenia store could be built and open before Altamonte Springs, he noted, due to a need for replatting in Altamonte and renewed city approvals.