Central Florida Business Briefs - Oct. 2006
LAKE COUNTY -- Construction has started on Northeast Community Park, a $15-million project that will turn 96 acres of orange groves in Umatilla into the county's largest recreation area with soccer, football and baseball fields, tennis and racquetball courts, a picnic area and a playground. Completion is expected in early 2008.
LAKE MARY -- Colonial Center 300 at TownPark, a $20-million office building, opened with 95% occupancy this summer. The four-story, 150,000-sq.-ft. building is part of Colonial TownPark, the mixeduse community developed by Colonial Properties Trust.
MAITLAND -- Trevi Development expects to begin construction this winter on Trevi, an urban-type community at U.S. Highway 17-92 and Horatio Avenue. The twobuilding complex will feature first-floor retail space. Four floors above that contain 96 condos ranging from $449,000 to $1.7 million.
MELBOURNE -- Boeing Co. has awarded Harris Corp. (NYSE- HRS) a $12.5-million contract for work on a system that will improve targeting and firing by the Navy's Super Hornet aircraft and a $4.5-million contract to develop and supply recording device units for the Army's AH-64D Apache Longbow helicopter. Harris has also received a delivery order for more than $35 million for highfrequency Falcon II radio systems for the Marines and has been awarded a $2.5- million contract to supply Falcon II radios for the German Ministry of Defense.
ORANGE COUNTY -- A tourist tax increase from 5 cents per dollar to 6 cents will help pay for a new performing arts center and improvements to the T.D. Waterhouse arena and the Citrus Bowl. Orange County commissioners approved the increase, which will be used for the first two years to beef up tourism marketing efforts.
? The University of Central Florida has received a record $104.4 million in research funding for 2006, surpassing the $100-million mark for the second year in a row. Here's how the research dollars break down: Education, $16.3 million; engineering, $15.3 million; optics, $14.3 million; biomedical, $7.7 million; and nanoscience, $2 million.
? Florida Hospital has been designated a teaching hospital, one of about 400 nationwide, by the Association of American Medical College's Council of Teaching Hospitals and Health Systems. To receive the prestigious designation, hospitals must sponsor or participate in at least four approved residency programs. The nonprofit hospital system is undergoing a $1-billion expansion project across its seven campuses. ? A new test could use teardrops to test for early detection of diabetes. The test, which would replace daily finger pricks and could be available in pharmacies, was developed by University of Central Florida assistant professor Florencio Hernandez and research partner Andres Campilglia.
? L-3 Communications subsidiary CyTerra, based in Orlando, has been awarded a historic 10-year, $300-million contract to manufacture up to 17,000 hand-held mine detectors for the Army. ? Bright House Networks has agreed to donate $15 million over 15 years for naming rights to the University of Central Florida Golden Knights stadium, which is scheduled to wrap up construction in time for the 2007 football season.
? Two University of Central Florida professors have been awarded a $988,553 grant from NASA to design an ultraviolet imaging spectrometer that would give scientists a better handle on how weather in space affects Earth. If Richard Eastes and James Harvey succeed in this phase, they'll receive a $45-million grant to build the device for a 2012 spaceflight.
? Orlando-based Baker Barrios Architects has been awarded a five-year contract to provide architectural and engineering services for the city of Clearwater. ? Coral Gablesbased Cornerstone Group is expected to finish construction in mid-2007 on Regent Park, a 202-unit townhome community on Dean Road near State Roads 408 and 417. Prices begin at $169,900.
? The Orlando International Airport is testing the effectiveness of bio-diesel fuel in 100 of its fleet vehicles. The fuel is a blend of 20% bio-diesel and 80% petroleum diesel.
OSCEOLA COUNTY -- Daytona Beachbased builder ICI Homes has started construction on Discovery at Legacy Resort, which will include 870 townhomes and condominiums near State Road 535 and Osceola Parkway near Walt Disney World. Prices will start from $50,000 for fractional ownership and $700,000 for whole ownership.