The Andersen Foundation, a charitable organization founded by the longtime Orlando Sentinel publisher Martin Andersen, has filed plans with the city to replace a 56-year-old “Andersen Building” next to the College Park Post Office with a sleek, new mixed-use building that would multiply the space five times over.
The foundation, which sold the adjacent property to the USPS in 1975, is applying for an intensity bonus to allow for the infill development that would double the floor area ratio (FAR) from the standard .5 to 1.0. The existing 1,350-square-foot building used to house the foundation’s offices but is now vacant.
George Kramer, area manager for S&ME, filed a memo in support of the bonus, noting that the new project would meet the requirements in city code. The new building would have 9,898 square feet, along with seven covered parking spaces on the ground level.
“The primary use of the building will be office with the secondary use being retail on the ground floor,” Kramer wrote. “Currently, the property includes a vacant office building that was previously the headquarters of the property owner’s operations. Although not considered a blighted structure, the current building is impractical as an office building and does not represent the highest and best use on the site.”
Kramer said the new 1717 Edgewater building would exhibit superior architectural design with an inviting entryway that would add interest to the Edgewater Drive corridor. “The roofline includes a structural lattice extending from the front façade which draws the view shed vertically without being too demonstrative,” he wrote of the design by C4 Architecture.
“Modern stylings were used to establish a consistent theme for the structure. Angles and hard lines generate interest and create an expressive statement. With the use of bands of color (gray accents) that break up the floors, it is easy to see to pick up on the subtle changes in the horizontal planes. Volumes that jut out toward Edgewater Drive provide depth.”
The foundation also owns the Gracia B. Andersen building at 1615 Edgewater Dr., just south of the post office, intends to use that property for off-site parking for the new development. Kramer said the two properties are about 315 feet apart.