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Former NY auto dealer buys Walmart property

A NY investor has bought a parcel on which a Walmart Neighborhood Markets is being built.
A NY investor has bought a parcel on which a Walmart Neighborhood Markets is being built.

A retired car dealership owner from New York has paid $4.33 million for a property that will contain a new Walmart.

The land, on the Sanford/Lake Mary border, was sold to him by the project's developer under a 1031 exchange.

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Mark Herrmann of Chappaqua, NY, on Nov. 10 bought the 9.5 acre parcel where the 41,117-square-foot Walmart is being built, Seminole County property records show.

Andrew Hupp of Clearwater-based Hupp Realty Advisors was the seller. CBRE represented Hupp.

Herrmann's purchase was his second in the Orlando area in the last three months. In late August, he purchased Darden Restaurants' flagship Olive Garden parcel on International Drive for an estimated $12 million.

Herrmann, who operated Mark Buick Pontiac GMC in Yonkers, NY, from 1967 to 2009, said he came to know Central Florida 25 years ago "when I would take my children to Disney World."

As a businessman, "I like investing in Central Florida," he said. "I think it's a tremendous growth area."

But Herrmann is tightening the reins when it comes to additional purchases, at least for now. "Let's see where interest rates go," he said.

Herrmann's purchase was in accordance with the Internal Revenue's IRC Section 1031, which allows the sale of a property, the reinvestment of the proceeds in a new, similar, property and all capital gain taxes to be deferred.

Herrmann "is an investor who bought the property for tax reasons," said his attorney Kenneth Wurtenberger of Ft. Lauderdale.

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The Walmart parcel is at the southeast corner of West 25th Street, or H.E. Thomas Jr. Parkway, and Casa Verde Boulevard, just west of SR 417.

Plans are for it to open in January. The Walmart will be one of the company's Neighborhood Markets which, while large, are an estimated 40,000 square feet, a quarter of the size of a typical Walmart Supercenter.

The store has a 20-year lease and its current rent is $195,000 annually. Rent will stay flat for the first 20 years. After that, Walmart has the option of extending its lease every five years for 80 years, with five percent rent increases possible at each renewal.

The tenant Cap Rate is 4.5 percent and Walmart will pay for improvements to the property, including building a gas station on the parcel.

In May, Sandra Camaro, who lives in the nearby Chase Groves community, started a petition to prevent the store from being built, the kind of effort Walmart is no stranger to and which infrequently succeeds if the project is already underway.

Walmart first proposed the store in December 2014, Seminole County planning department records show.

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Launched in 1998 to help the retailer get deeper into suburban areas, Neighborhood Markets sell about 28,000 items.

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at ktalley@growthspotter.com or (407) 420-5176. Follow GrowthSpotter on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

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