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Consolidated-Tomoka proposes big projects to revitalize Daytona’s downtown, beachside

After triggering a surge in new homes and commercial development along LPGA Boulevard, Consolidated-Tomoka Land Co. is now turning its sights on Daytona Beach’s downtown and beachside.

The company recently submitted preliminary plans to the city for two major projects that could transform Daytona Beach’s historic business district as well as its beachside tourism district.

The first, code-named “Project Delta,” is a redevelopment project that could bring 300 “luxury” apartments, a grocery store, street-front restaurants and shops and a parking garage to the downtown property Consolidated-Tomoka owns where First Baptist Church is currently located.

The other, with the simple working title “Main Street Mixed-Use,” would redevelop a city-owned parking lot directly south of the Ocean Center convention complex. The project calls for building a high-rise that would include street-front retail, a parking garage and either apartments or condominiums, along with a covered pedestrian overpass connecting the Ocean Center and the Hilton.

Consolidated-Tomoka is a Daytona Beach-based real estate investment company whose sales of land in the area surrounding the Interstate 95/LPGA Boulevard interchange in recent years have become the sites of new home communities such as Latitude Margaritaville and ICI Homes’ Mosaic, as well as Tanger Outlets mall, Tomoka Town Center and the Trader Joe’s distribution center.

The company recently commissioned a nationally recognized architecture firm to create conceptual plans for both Project Delta and the Main Street mixed-use project.

Daytona Beach City Manager Jim Chisholm unveiled conceptual renderings of the two projects at a Daytona Regional Chamber of Commerce breakfast event last week at the clubhouse at LPGA International.

“It could be the catalyst for more projects,” he told the gathering.

Both potential projects would be built by third-party developers, which in the case of Project Delta could end up co-owning the property along with Consolidated-Tomoka.

John Albright, the president and CEO of Consolidated-Tomoka, stressed that there are no guarantees that either project will be built.

“We are hopeful that we can be successful in assisting the city in having these dynamic developments lead the way as catalysts to create much needed housing in the urban cores to bring back both a vibrant downtown and (beachside) Main Street where people can live/work,” he wrote in an email.

“These renderings are just that — images that show potential developments which can, and most likely will, change depending on many factors,” he added.

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Week-by-week, Protogroup tower rises on Daytona Beach horizon

DAYTONA BEACH — If you’ve noticed that the 28-story South Tower of Protogroup’s planned 501-room Daytona Beach Convention Hotel & Condominiums seems to be growing by the week, you’re exactly right.

“We’re working at a pace of about a week per floor,” Mike Zehe, general superintendent of the mammoth construction site at the intersection of State Road A1A and Oakridge Boulevard.

“This morning, we just poured the 23rd (floor) deck. It tops out at 28,” added Zehe of Yates Construction, the project’s general contractor. “Right now, we’re in the first sequence in a two-sequence deck for the 23rd level. We’ll top off the building by the end of November.”

When it’s completed in 2020, the Convention Hotel & Condominiums’ taller North Tower will rise to 380 feet, making it the tallest building in Volusia and Flagler counties. To the South, the second tower will rise to 330 feet. With a price tag of $192 million, the project also will be the most expensive hotel/condo development in the area’s history.

Earlier this month, construction progress was reported to be on-time for the projected completion dates, August 2019 for the 28-story South Tower and sometime in 2020 for the 31-story North Tower, said Alexey Lysich, vice president of Protogroup, the Palm Coast-based, family-run company whose Russian owners are developing the property.

Despite a rainy summer, Lysich said that the absence of hurricanes or other tropical storms has enabled construction crews to stay on schedule.

“We are lucky this year with the hurricanes, unlike two years before,” Lysich said. “Everything is going very smooth.”

Zehe, who supervises a crew of roughly 200 tradesmen at work on the South Tower and another 20 starting prep work on the North Tower, said that crews on Friday will begin “dry-in” work on the South Tower’s 12th-floor mid-rise, a process that enables interior work to begin.

Outside utilities are scheduled to be brought in by November, he said.

Also this week, a tower crane will be going up on the site of the North Tower, where work on the foundation will begin on Thursday, Zehe said.

“We should start going vertical on the North Tower 60 days after Oct. 1,” Zehe said.

Zehe also reports that the weather has been cooperative for construction progress.

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Bayshore Capital, former Hard Rock developer, returns with luxury condo project

DAYTONA BEACH SHORES — When the grand opening bash for the new Daytona Beach Hard Rock Hotel was held earlier this month, it was an admittedly bittersweet moment for attendee Henry Wolfond.

“It would’ve been great to be celebrating the opening of the Hard Rock that we would’ve developed,” the CEO of Bayshore Capital Inc. conceded in a recent interview.

Daytona Beach-based Summit Hospitality Management Group took over efforts to bring the Hard Rock brand to Daytona Beach a year ago — with encouragement from Wolfond — after Toronto, Canada-based Bayshore suspended its own project two miles down the street, which it began in 2013.

Today, the 10.2-acre site at 801 S. Atlantic Ave. where Bayshore intended to build its Hard Rock Hotel & Cafe remains vacant. But Wolfond and company are back with a new project less than a mile to the south: a sleek, 12-story luxury condo tower called Max Daytona.

“Max will be the benchmark for the new standard of living on the World’s Most Famous Beach,” Wolfond declared in a recent press release.

A sales center for Max Daytona has opened on the development site at 1901 S. Atlantic Ave. in Daytona Beach Shores where Wolfond and other Bayshore executives recently spoke with The News-Journal.

While Bayshore has yet to earn a return on the $13 million it spent on its Hard Rock project before it was scrapped, Wolfond said his company gained a valuable insight from the experience, and it isn’t what some might expect.

“One of the key lessons we learned (from the original Hard Rock project) was that there is demand for luxury condos. People are willing to pay more money for a higher level of quality,” Wolfond said.

Prices for condo units at Max Daytona will range from $400,000 to more than $1.4 million. That works out on a square foot basis from the low $300s to approximately $650 — well above the current going rate for oceanfront condos locally.

The median sale price for beachside condos sold in April in the Daytona Beach area was $207,000, a 20 percent increase over the median price of units sold a year ago, according to local observer Ron Wysocarski, the CEO and broker of the Wyse Home Team Realty in Port Orange and Flagler Beach. The majority of the 143 condos sold were oceanfront units along A1A, with the rest along the Halifax River, he said.

Max Daytona’s prices may seem high for the Daytona Beach area, but it’s “luxury at a fraction of the cost” for comparable oceanfront luxury condos in other parts of the state, including Sarasota, where buyers can expect to pay “close to $1,000″ a square foot and Miami, where the cost for oceanfront condos in some areas can be in the $3,000 a square foot range, according to Wolfond.

Bayshore has already received deposits for 21 of the condo tower’s 72 available units, with those deposits set to become “hard contracts” this coming week, he said.

“Once we have 30 contracts, that will give us the green light to proceed with construction,” said Lorne Hochstadter, Bayshore’s director of marketing.

Wolfond said his company plans to break ground on the project this fall, with the first units ready for occupancy in either summer or fall 2020. The total cost of the project, including acquiring the land, is expected to be $40 million.

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The Next Urban Powerhouses: 10 Smaller Cities Poised to Skyrocket

 | May 7, 2018

Everyone obsesses over the handful of smaller cities that got the secret formula just right and have exploded into some of the nation’s biggest economic and trendsetting powerhouses.

It can happen quicker than expected. It wasn’t long ago that red-hot (and ultra-expensive) cities such as Seattle, Nashville, TN, and Austin, TX, were considered sleepy or secondary markets. Ah, memories.

When cities reach the exclusive and ever-elusive boomtown status, they find themselves bursting with good-paying jobs, world-class culture, and Instagram-worthy foodie havens. Homeowners who got into these magical markets early can sell their homes for megaprofits. But those trying to buy into them post-boom might find the entry price too steep.

So savvy home buyers wonder where the next generation of powerhouse cities will be. That’s where the data team at realtor.com® comes in.

We crunched the numbers to figure out which small and midsize metros are poised to hit it big. What we found: unexpected places that are millennial-friendly with tech job growth and proximity to bigger cities where prices have gone insane.

“We’ll see small cities continue to be growth centers,” says Chris Porter, chief demographer at John Burns Real Estate Consulting, a national firm. “A lot of them are in the South—a region with great affordability, a business-friendly environment, and warmer weather.”

We looked at data* from the 200 largest metros, factoring in population, income, home price, and building permit growth; employment figures; and cultural amenities. We excluded the 15 largest metros to keep big-name cities such as New York and Dallas off our list. And we included only one metro per state to ensure geographic diversity.

Herbert Caen, who penned a column for the San Francisco Chronicle for nearly 60 years, wrote of his beloved hometown: “A city is not gauged by its length and width, but by the broadness of its vision and the height of its dreams.”

So where are the next dream towns?

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Adopting a laid-back attitude at Latitude Margaritaville

For Don and Susan Veatch, Margaritaville is more than just a state of mind.

Acting like “Parrotheads” — the chilled out, Hawaiian-shirt-wearing fan nation equivalent to Deadheads — the couple, 62 and 60, respectively, had camped out so they could be first in line for the object of their devotion, singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett.

But they weren’t queuing up for concert tickets or his latest CD. They were waiting for sales to open at the Buffett-branded Latitude Margaritaville development here for people 55 and older.

“It was like a big party, with a band playing and free pizza for everyone in line,” Susan Veatch said.

In this pastel paradise, Key West-inspired houses are being built along streets linked to lyrics of Buffett’s 1977 hit “Margaritaville.”

Once it opens, you can live on Flip Flop Court, Coral Reef Way or St. Somewhere Drive. You can take your dog to the Barkaritaville pet spa; work out in the Fins Up! Fitness Center or the Paradise Pool; take classes or do a little work at the Workin’ and Playin’ Center; see shows at the Last Mango Theater; or dance at a nightly outdoor concert at the band shell in the Latitude Town Square.

And, yes, you can get a Cheeseburger in Paradise at the Latitude Bar & Chill restaurant and a margarita at the poolside Changes in Attitude bar.

While Latitude Margaritaville sounds 100 percent laid back, Buffett himself is clearly driven. In addition to his empire of resort hotels and array of products to sell, Buffett’s first Broadway musical is opening, along with two of a possible chain of active-adult communities this year. And, oh yes, the 71-year-old musician is going on tour with his band.

“To quote a line from a song I wrote with Mac MacAnally, ‘These days I am up about the time I used to go to bed,’” Buffett said in an email. “Well, that could be a little exaggerated, but that is what writers do. I have always been an early riser, and even more so these days.

“A usual daily routine for me is rising around 6 a.m.,” he adds. “I find it the best time to work, be it creative projects or business projects; but it’s one or the other. It’s too distracting to try and skip around. I’ll finish up around 9 a.m. and then get some kind of exercise, preferably outside. It all depends on the weather. Before whatever I do, be it paddling, surfing, swimming, biking or playing tennis, stretching is absolutely a requirement at my age. That gets me to lunch and a nap. After napping seems to be a good time for me to catch up on calls and emails.”

That lifestyle is just what Latitudes buyers hope to replicate — at least the outdoor activity and the napping.

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