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Business Observer Friday, Jul. 9, 2004 18 years ago

Real Estate Briefs (Sara/Mana edition)

This week's items: C&W Development buys two Manasota Key parcelsLowe's Home Improvementbuys Bradenton land for centerJohn Cannon Homes plans new corporate headquartersRamar Group selling building in Phillippi Landings

Real Estate Briefs (Sara/Mana edition)

C&W Development buys

two Manasota Key parcels

A new developer has entered the two-county market. Residential developer C&W Development, based in Naples, bought several acres on Manasota Key from JJ Robertson Ltd. for $9.5 million.

"This is just a beautiful piece of property," says Jeff Cotter, a principal with C&W Development.

"We have been developers for 20 years down here. We haven't exactly decided what we are going to do with the parcels, but we are pretty comfortable putting down our money for land that nice. There is about none (beachfront property) left in Naples. This is not something we are going to rush into."

The two parcels, located on Manasota Key Road, have gulf and Lemon Bay waterfront views.

"We have done everything from exclusive multimillion-dollar homes on the ocean to large developments that have 600 homes sites and a clubhouse," Cotter says. "We are very keen on the environmental issues there. Whatever we do will blend in well with the environment."

Cotter says local residents can expect to see a lot more Naples developers in the near future.

"We are looking at property in Englewood and southern Sarasota County as an area for future growth," Cotter says. "There is a lot of new infrastructure coming into the area. It really reminds me of Naples from 15 years ago. We have talked about a satellite office there, but for now we have no immediate plans to do that. We are a very specialized development company. We find pieces that have some uniqueness to them, such as beautiful beachfront property. We currently have projects in Blue Ridge, N.C., and Grand Cayman."

C&W Development, which used the corporate name of Cypress of Southwest LLC for the transaction, mortgaged the property to J. J. Robertson Ltd. and Southern Community Bank of Southwest Florida for $9.5 million.

Lowe's Home Improvement

buys Bradenton land for center

Lowe's Home Centers Inc. recently purchased several acres next to a closing Kmart at the northwest corner of Cortez Road and 14th Street West in Bradenton from Lefmark/BVT Bradenton Associates for about $7 million. A spokesperson for Lowe's declined to comment on the home-improvement giant's plans for the site until later in the process. Lowe's is expected to build a 135,744-square-foot home improvement store on the site.

In June, Kmart employees learned that the troubled national retailer was not planning to renew its lease on the 109,000-square-foot store, 4124 14th Street W., because of poor store performance. The Kmart store property is still owned by Lefmark/BVT Bradenton Associates of Miami.

Two years ago, Kmart closed a store on State Road 70 west of Interstate 75, which was eventually replaced by a Beall's store.

John Cannon Homes plans

new corporate headquarters

Sarasota-based John Cannon Homes Inc. has announced plans for a new corporate headquarters on a four-acre parcel in Lakewood Ranch Corporate Park. The home builder's corporate office is currently located at 7077 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota.

"The new office will be centrally located to all of our projects, spanning from Hillsborough to Charlotte County," says John Cannon, president and owner. "Our company is undergoing unprecedented growth into new markets, including our expansion into the Tampa Bay area. The new office location is conveniently located just off Interstate 75, providing all of our client's easy accessibility to our facility."

Designed by architect Don Lawson, the 50,000-square-foot building will be three stories. The new building will also feature a 3,100-square-foot state of the art design studio on the first floor.

The second and third floors will consist of the other departments that make up the team at John Cannon Homes, including management, construction, customer service, design and drafting, information technology, sales and marketing, administrative and purchasing.

"Having our entire operation under one roof will only enhance and streamline the major components of our organization," says Christine McKinlay, director of new product and design services.

Construction is slated to begin in late fall with an anticipated completion in the fourth quarter of 2005.

About 18,000 square feet of the new headquarters will be available for lease.

Ramar Group selling

building in Phillippi Landings

Sarasota's Ramar Group Cos. Inc. is moving forward with the Phillippi Landings condominium development, located between Proctor and Clark roads west of U.S. 41.

"We are into the sales in the second building," says Robert Morris Jr., one of the Ramar Group partners. "The first building will have 33 units in seven living floors over parking. The entire project will have 180 units. It's designed in more of an Italian Riviera style."

Six buildings are planned for the site over a five-year buildout. The price range for the units runs from $400,000 to $2 million. The Ramar Group Cos. is also selling 37 dock units separate of the condominium development.

The principals in the project include Morris, his father Robert Morris, Jaime Carrion and Anina McSweeney.

"This is the most luxurious project ever built," Robert Morris Jr. says. "This is kind of the nature of the building."

The general contractor for the project is W.G. Mills Inc.

Breathe Easy Air

to relocate to Bradenton

Jeff and Lisa Murphy, owners of Sarasota-based Breathe Easy Air Inc., have moved the company to the 1900 block of 60th Place East (1944, 1950, 1956 and 1962 60th Place E.) in Bradenton. The Murphys, who used the corporate name of Breathe Easy Air Inc. for the purchase, bought the 10,000-square-foot building in Pines Industrial Park from Steve Solomon Inc. for $424,707.

"We have been leasing there (7040 15th Street E., Sarasota) for about five years," Lisa Murphy says. "We had about 2,000 square feet. We where just busting at the seams. We didn't even have enough room to conduct business. We had three people sharing one desk for three months. Now that we are in here we are looking to hire some new people. We are looking for a receptionist, a service tech and an installer or two."

The new owners are leasing out some of the space in the building to existing tenants.

"We were looking to purchase this building last summer," she says. "We wanted to be in earlier this year around January of February during our slow season. But the building took longer than we had expected to build."

Jeff Murphy is starting a new mold-remediation and environmental services company that will take about 3,000 square feet on the second floor of the new building.

Breathe Easy Air Inc. mortgaged the building to Coast Bank for $475,000.

Bullseye Properties buys

land for Expo on Clark

Ken and Claudia Bachman, owners of the Sarasota development and property management company Bullseye Properties Inc., have big plans for a 5.5-acre parcel at the northeast corner of Clark and Sawyer roads in Sarasota.

Bullseye Properties bought the land from J. H. Investment Services Inc. for $4 million. "We are planning to develop a 65,000-square-foot shopping center there," Ken Bachman says. "We are still finalizing the site plan, but we should start construction in September. We are calling it the Expo on Clark."

Bachman says the shopping center, which should be completed in April, is already seeing strong interest. "We have made no commitments so far," Bachman says, "but we are taking names. We will have at least one, maybe two, restaurants there. We are thinking it could become focused on home furnishings and home improvement."

Because of the size of the center, a traditional grocery anchor is fairly unlikely, but Bachman says a 20,000- to 25,000-square-foot user is certainly possible.

"This is a great location," Bachman says. "It is going to be the nicest most upscale center on Clark Road and likely all of Sarasota. We are going to charge market rates." Dave Tichenor of Tichenor Group Architects, Sarasota, is developing the contemporary-designed project. AM Engineering Inc. will provide the engineering services for the center.

The estimated cost of the project, including the land purchase, is $12 million. Bullseye Properties, which is acting as the leasing agent for the center, has similar retail facilities in Port Charlotte and Fort Myers.

"We are really excited about it," Bachman says. "I'm really not all that surprised about the level of interest. There is not a lot of land available on Clark Road and this piece is just a great location. It's in between I-75 and U.S. 41."

Ian Black of Ian Black Real Estate and Chad Roffers of SKY Real Estate Co. Inc. handled the transaction.


× TLC & Papa LLC purchased Units 1-5 in the North Key Plaza, an office condominium development at 5610 Gulf of Mexico Drive, Longboat Key, from Andrew Hlywa for $1.25 million. TLC & Papa LLC mortgaged the new property to Horizon Bank for $880,000.

× Bradenton businessmen Daniel Sexton Jr. and David Peck purchased vacant grazing land at Lakewood Ranch Boulevard from Lakewood Ranch Commerce Park Inc. for $690,010. The two partners, who used the corporate name of Lakewood Flex Properties Phase II, mortgaged the property to James Alderman trustee of James Lyon Trust for $600,000.

× The 2420 Trailmate LLC has purchased a 37,000-square-foot industrial building in Parkland Industrial Park, 2420 Trailmate Drive, Sarasota, from the Trailmate Investment Group for $1.7 million. James A. Barnett P.A., of Ian Black Real Estate, handled the transaction.

× Lanier Worldwide Inc. has renewed its lease for an additional five years at 4,751 square feet in Ridgegate Office Park, 5632 Bee Ridge Road in Sarasota. Ian Black of Ian Black Real Estate handled the transaction.

× Office Depot Inc. has opened its first retail store in Venice at 1564 US 41 Bypass near U.S. 41 and Center Road. The new store is the first Millennium2 (M2) prototype store for the office-supplies store. the M2 store is designed to be less expensive to open, more efficient to operate and easier to shop. Products are grouped in highly visible, strategically located "pods," with core supplies at the outer perimeter of the store (signed for optimal visibility and easy purchase) and furniture and technology at the center (to better support consultative sales and the area in which the majority of staff will be located during peak buying hours).

× Ian Black Real Estate, an independent commercial real estate brokerage and management company in Sarasota, is relocating from a stand-alone building at 1069 Central Ave. into the original Ace Theatre building on at 1419-A Fifth St., adjacent to the Sarasota Coffee & Tea Co.

"The space suits my taste, and it suits the way I like to do business," says Black. "When people walk in, both clients and the people who work here, I want it to be a fun place, a place that feels like home. I am not a typical broker, and this will not be a typical kind of office environment. I believe it will be one of the most exciting offices in town."

The company is expecting to move Sept. 1. Last month was a record month for the company, which closed more than $6 million in deals.

× Dave Coupland and Ron Travis, owners of RE/MAX Gulfstream Realty, have opened a new 6,800-square-foot office on University Parkway in Sarasota. The new office is Gulfstream's fourth and brings the organization to more than 150 agents and staff. The new location is in the Benderson Development University Commons, 5411 University Parkway at the corner of Honore and University Pkwy just west of I-75. According to a traffic study performed by the Sarasota Department of Transportation in January, 48,318 cars a day pass by the new location.

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