Downtown parking garage brings new development opportunities

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SARASOTA, Fla. -- A new parking garage in downtown Sarasota is under construction, and with it comes opportunities for new real estate.

The State Street parking garage will feature a ground floor containing 14,000 square feet of retail space, and a neighboring parcel is for sale, zoned for a potential condo.

The new garage is being built in the heart of downtown Sarasota, just a block off Main Street on Lemon Avenue. It’s a location that potential business owners and developers may see as a gold mine.

For now, it's nothing but an eye sore, as construction crews keep busy at work. But in less than a year, that hard work will likely pay off when the garage opens in Spring 2015. The garage will feature around 400 parking spaces, but will also include space on its ground floor for shops, restaurants, and offices.

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State Street garage construction site on June 19th, 2014

“I would say it will be of interest to a variety of uses, typically found in downtown Sarasota. Thank goodness we are experiencing some healthy activity right now.” And interested parties are already coming forward, according to Ian Black, the realtor hired by the city to advertise the 14,000 square feet of space. “Location, location, location. That's what we are offering here.”

Also being offered is a neighboring land parcel on the west side of the garage, where developers can build a new condo.

It’s just a sign of the times, says Black. “Right now, downtown is experiencing a significant amount of activity. We have a hotel going over here, an apartment over here, a new condo over here. As we can see here, the crane, the national bird of Sarasota, has returned.”

Bids for both opportunities are due August 6th.