Retail Dining Developments

New market entry among 4 restaurant brands on plan for North I-Drive project

A view from the I-4 flyover bridge currently under construction that will link neighboring Oak Ridge Road and Grand National Drive across the interstate to Caravan Court. This view looks southeast, directly on the 16.5 acres owned by North American Properties.

UPDATED: February 25, 2017 6:39 AM — Four national restaurant chains may anchor the first phase of Cincinnati-based North American Properties' 16.5-acre mixed-use project planned on the northern end of International Drive, directly south of Orlando International Premium Outlets.

An affiliate of the developer filed a Master Signage Plan with the city on Feb. 16, which included tenant names on its updated site plan. Those names were Longhorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze, Starbucks and Mission BBQ.


Officials with North American Properties did not respond to requests for comment on Friday about its tenant lineup, or updated timeline for the project.

This updated site plan submitted by North American Properties for its Grand National mixed-use development shows four restaurant pads fronting Oak Ridge Road, and the current placement of other retail, hotel and multifamily uses.

Located at 5504 W. Oak Ridge Road, the land lies in the path of the I-4 Ultimate project's new flyover bridge that will link neighboring Grand National Drive across the interstate to Caravan Court, a block from one of the main entrances of Universal Orlando. The flyover is expected to open in Summer 2017.


GrowthSpotter first reported in March 2016 the developer had a contract on the property, and North American later paid $16.8 million for the land in late July.

This location would be Mission BBQ's first restaurant in Orlando. The Maryland-based chain has eight locations around Florida, and has been mentioned by local retail brokerage associates as actively targeting multiple sites in Greater Orlando.

It would be a second location on I-Drive for both Bahama Breeze and Longhorn Steakhouse, each of which have their other locations in the tourist corridor based three miles or longer to the south. It would be the third Starbucks on or near I-Drive, north of the Orange County Convention Center.

Darden Restaurants' acceptance of second locations for Bahama Breeze and Longhorn so close to other units on I-Drive speaks to the confidence retailers may have in the new traffic that will flow eastward over that I-4 flyover bridge from Universal Orlando, and S. Kirkman Road.

The updated site plan also includes a 400-key hotel and 350-unit apartment complex, each with supporting parking garages. The plan's six retail or dining outparcels and inline retail space currently project around 80,000-90,000 square feet overall.

Those uses would be well below the entitlements approved by Orlando's City Council last July for the project's Master Plan, which were for 130,000 square feet of retail/dining space, 20,000 square feet of medical office/clinic use, 800 hotel rooms and a 350-unit apartment complex.

International Sign out of Largo prepared the sign package plans for North American Properties.

North American has been an active developer of Publix-anchored shopping plazas in Florida, and is the developer behind Seminole Towne Center in Sanford and Sodo in Downtown Orlando.


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