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Planning Board says ‘No Sale’ to St. Regis developer’s request

STEVE REID
Editor & Publisher
sreid@lbknews.com

Unicorp President Chuck Whittall received a unanimous ‘No’ from the Longboat Key Planning and Zoning Board last week when he asked to be allowed to install a temporary sales office on the site of the former Colony Beach and Tennis Resort.

Whittall said that the sales office is intrinsic and instrumental to facilitate pre-sales of the condominiums that the town allowed him to build when it passed a redevelopment plan last March.

The approval allows Unicorp to build 166 St. Regis Hotel rooms and 78 St. Regis branded residential condominiums on the 17.6-acre site, which is the former home of the Colony Beach and Tennis Resort. The development plan also includes three restaurants, two bars, a spa, as well as 15,304 square feet of meeting space, including 7,650 square-foot ballroom.

Whittall sought to place the sales office on the site by asking the Planning and Zoning Board to recommend approval, to change Town Zoning Code. Currently, the code only allows such an office once permits have been issued and actual construction has commenced.

The Planning and Zoning Board was against the idea primarily because the change would affect the entirety of the Key and would not be site specific.

Whittall has stated that financing for the project is established through pre-sales and he will request approval for the temporary office from the Town Commission at an upcoming meeting. The Planning and Zoning Board acts as an advisory board and the final decision will be made by the Commission.

Currently, Unicorp is in the midst of demolishing the former Colony structures and is entering a legal process to achieve final consolidation of ownership. Majority Colony Unit Owner Andy Adams has still not come to terms with Whittall and a court action that could force the sale is pending. That process of consolidation must be achieved before Whittall can obtain the building permits from the town.

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Longboat Key News

1 Response for “Planning Board says ‘No Sale’ to St. Regis developer’s request”

  1. Whos on First says:

    From A to Z, Andy Adams equaled Zippo Zoning permission. When will this end? You’ve got to pity poor Chuck Whitall, trying to make a buck, being thrown under the truck by our Planning Board. One can only hope that the courts move beyond their usual glacial speed to consolidate the ownership, forcing Adams to divest his properties so that Whittall can complete demolition of the Colony property. Greed is not an attribute to be rewarded, however our P&Z by its actions seem to reward Adams to the detriment of Whittall, when they might have worked a bit harder to come to an equitable, but targeted, solution. Now we need to see the Longboat Key News report on this court case, as Whittall seeks an answer that willl allow him to finally move forward with his plan to resolve this issue.

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