Hotel to Come In Downtown Gainesville

For a considerable amount of time now, Horizon Hospitality Management Inc. has been in serious negotiations with the city of Gainesville in regards to purchasing City Lot 10, which is on Southwest First Ave. and Second Street in Downtown Gainesville. The property has an appraised market value of $760,000, and both the City and Horizon are willing to make a deal around that price.

If Horizon gets their hands on the property, they plan to build a 12 story (minimum) building which will include “a 180- to 220-room full-service hotel, around 10,000 square feet of retail space, between 13,500 and 16,500 square feet of office space and another 22,500 to 27,500 square feet of meeting space.” The developer plans to take this space and with the approval of Hilton Hotels and Resorts, build an Embassy Suites Hotel. A reverter clause in the contract would allow the city to take back Lot 10 if Horizon violates this clause.

There is one factor still holding up the purchase and selling of this lot though. In the early 2000s, the city entered a 99 year agreement with Kenneth and Linda McGurn for use of the parking garage. The cost for the city to get out of this agreement is nearly $2,000,000 and rises each year. The city had this to say about the Lot, “An Aug. 6 City Commission meeting agenda said early termination of the McGurn license agreement was being proposed in part to reassert the city’s control of the garage 'as an asset to potentially spur urban redevelopment' and to cancel out a long-term -- and growing -- financial liability.” If all goes well, Horizon will end up will 855 parking spaces, with some of those still designated for public use.

Click here for the full article from the Gainesville Sun or click here for more Front Street news...


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Virginia MacKoul

Virginia is a graduate from the University of Florida's College of Design Construction and Planning with a degree in Sustainability and the Built Environment, and a minor in Urban Regional Planning. Virginia joined the Front Street team in 2011, as an intern. Upon graduation, Virginia joined the Front Street team full-time as the Director of Client Services. Ms. MacKoul’s addition furthers Front Street’s continued growth and expansion within Gainesville and other North Central Florida markets. She was promoted to Director of Marketing in 2014 and now manages the firm’s team of interns and oversees all marketing and branding activity. Virginia was born in Boston and moved to Lee County, Florida in 1997. Virginia graduated her high school's International Baccalaureate program and started at the University of Florida with a focus on Architecture. Virginia shares Front Street's passion of giving back to the community and those in need. Virginia's hobbies include photography, cooking, football, movies, music, and spending time with her dog, Brinkley.

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