Central Florida In the News - Oct. 2005
ALTAMONTE SPRINGS -- Informally known as the Altamonte Town Center, a $250-million, 1.5 million-sq.-ft. mixed-use project planned at Cranes Roost Park off Interstate 4 and State Road 436 now has an official name: Uptown Altamonte. The largest project of its kind in Seminole County, it will include 560 upscale condominiums and apartments, 200,000 square feet of retail and office space, entertainment and outdoor bistros along a European-style boulevard.
CENTRAL FLORIDA -- The seven counties of MyRegion.org -- Brevard, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Polk, Seminole and Volusia -- have announced their commitment to preserve seven natural and historic parts of the state: The St. Johns Mosaic and Econlockhatchee River, the Indian River Lagoon, the Greater Kissimmee Prairie, the Volusia Conservation Corridor, the Green Swamp, the Wekiva-Ocala Greenway and the Lake Wales Ridge.
DAYTONA BEACH -- The Workforce Development Board of Flagler and Volusia Counties has changed its name and moved to 329 Bill France Blvd., where it's now called the Center for Business Excellence, led by Rick Fraser. Its new web address is centerforbusinessexcellence.net.
HOLLY HILL -- Boca Developers of Deerfield Beach has broken ground on the first of four 25-story towers at Marina Grande on the Halifax, a 972-unit condominium project on the Halifax River.
LAKE MARY -- Alabama-based Colonial Properties Trust has purchased a 192,000-sq.-ft. office building at 1001 Colonial Center Heathrow from Pizzuti Realty of Columbus, Ohio, for an undisclosed price.
MAITLAND -- Electronic Arts has acquired competitor Hypnotix, the maker of Outlaw Golf and Outlaw Tennis video games. The California-based company's Maitland office, EA Tiburon, now employs 540 workers. Meanwhile, the company has received rights to develop games based on "The Lord of the Rings" by J.R.R. Tolkien and is hoping to boost lagging first-quarter sales.
OCOEE -- Developers of TimeShareWare and CondotelWare, software for the timeshare and hotel/condo industries, have opened a central Florida office as a satellite to TimeShareWare's headquarters in Salt Lake City. It's expected to employ up to 30 in the next two years.
ORLANDO -- The military has placed several multimillion-dollar contracts lately with two Orlando divisions of Lockheed Martin Corp. The Simulation, Training & Support division is supplying virtual combat convoy trainers and gunnery training systems for the Marines and the Army under contracts totaling more than $19 million. The Missiles and Fire Control division is working on radar electronics for Army helicopters under a $17.6-million contract issued to Longbow LLC, a partnership between Lockheed and Northrop Grumman Corp.
ITW Mortgage Investment IV has sold The Crossroads at Lake Buena Vista shopping center for $57 million to New York-based financial company TIAA-CREF. The property is off State Road 535 at the Interstate 4 Lake Buena Vista exit.
CNL Financial Group is expanding its development arm and doubling the staff to about two dozen. Former St. Joe/Arvida executive Timothy Edmond is now heading up CNL Realty & Development.
New York-based investment group RAK Acquisitions is converting the 1,081-unit Park Central apartment complex in southwest Orlando into condos. RAK paid $151 million for the complex.
ORMOND BEACH -- Along Interstate 95 at U.S. Highway 1, a new Harley-Davidson dealership that will double as an official visitors center for the Daytona Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau is the centerpiece of a $40-million, mixed-use complex dubbed Destination Daytona expected to open in time for the Oct. 20-23 Biketoberfest. The development will include an amphitheater, a truck stop, condominiums and retail.
OSCEOLA COUNTY -- American Leisure Holdings has obtained financing for the Sonesta Orlando Resort at Tierra Del Sol, a 972-unit timeshare property with a water park to be located on 122 acres on U.S. Highway 27 just north of Interstate 4 at U.S. Highway 192 between Osceola and Polk counties. The project will be completed in two phases in 2006 and 2007.
TITUSVILLE -- Helicopter Adventures, an internationally recognized flight training school, has added four classrooms at its Space Coast Regional Airport facility. The school employs more than 50 pilots who train about 250 students a year from all over the world.
WINDERMERE -- Fort Myers-based Grosse Point Development has purchased 549 acres on Lake Hancock at Horizon West to begin construction early next year on Summerlake, which will include 1,576 homesites.