Building Area: (sf)
Location of Project:
1540 Airport Blvd., Pensacola, Florida 32503
Located in the heart of the Cordova Mall core retail area of Pensacola, this proposed development has approximately 4,000 SF of shell space still available for lease with Jason’s Deli currently committed to leasing 4,900 +/- SF. This property is in an extremely desirable location. The lack of availble land and space is a huge barrier to entry for retailers looking to enter the Pensacola’s premier retail market.
SECTION 1: Creativity and Innovation: Describe the creativity and innovation of the development. Describe the complexity and uniqueness of the development. What makes the development popular? Is the project LEED certified?
We, the developers of 1540 Airport Boulevard, utilized creativity in the design of the building to give a very friendly, warm appeal and relation to the street, while simultaneously maximizing the utilization of the 1.2 acre parcel. We were also creative in our exterior and finish and color selections to ensure that the building, once completed appeared as if it truly belonged in the Cordova core retail area. With attention to detail and a desire to provide a high-end retail look, we chose finish characteristics that truly complemented and improved the streetscape. We were also innovative in our approach using complex stormwater retention methods to further maximize the surface utilization. The build-to-suit development was quite complex in that we had to work with a fairly small irregular-shaped parcel to create enough parking and building space to meet the very specific needs of the two national tenants. We consider the development unique in that the upscale elevation is above the level of other recent developments and raises the bar for future development.
SECTION 2: IMPACT TO COMMUNITY: Describe the impact that this development has had on the community. How many jobs were created as a result of the development? What measures were taken to lessen any negative impact to the community? Has the development generated other development in the area?
This development had a significant positive impact on the community as it provided an upscale retail building that brought one new national tenants to the area (Sleep Number was already in the sub-market). It also significantly increased the tax base with over $1MM in improvements to the property. There were over 30 jobs created as a result of the development due to the new location of one of the national tenants, Jason’s Deli. There were not any negative impacts to the community as a result of this project, therefore no measures were taken to reduce same. It is not known for sure whether or not this development had a positive impact on the contemplation of the re-development of the Sports Authority building that is to take place in the near future. However, we believe that due to the fact that two new national tenants were locating just down the street, it provided confidence for the new tenant, Gander Mountain to move forward with their lease deal.
SECTION 3: Challenges Overcome: Describe challenges overcome to make the development a reality. Describe zoning hurdles, site conditions, financing concerns, leasing, sales and marketing challenges.
SECTION 4: Success: Describe the success of the project. Did the development lease or sale as expected in regards to price and timing? What would you do differently?
There were quite a few challenges we experienced with this project as we had a small site on which we needed to satisfy Jason’s Deli parking requirements. We were able to work with our architect, Greg Uzdevenes to utilize his expertise in adhering the County requirements, while also meeting the needs of our tenants. We also had to deal with low site elevations, poor soil conditions, and intensive stormwater issues. Additionally, we had major site utility issues and had to close sections of Airport Boulevard for a number of nights to “jack and bore” under the road to access the sewer line. This was an unforeseen condition that threw us quite a curveball. Further, the negotiations with the national tenants were intensive and somewhat difficult in that we had to satisfy the two tenants (with totally separate façade and space needs) while being side-by-side in one building. Ultimately we were able to resolve all of the issues with the development to provide a 100% long-term leased facility. With ten year leases in place, this development will provide a tremendous benefit to the community in terms of additional retail and restaurant options, increased tax base, additional jobs, and a higher standard of retail development in the area.