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Downtown office building may go condo

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The new owners of the 16-story Clearwater Centre are discussing renovating the 1972 building, Clearwater officials say. By ROBERT FARLEY Published February 23, 2005 CLEARWATER – More downtown condominiums may be coming, this time at the eastern gateway to the city’s downtown core. The 16-story Clearwater Centre office building has been sold, and the new owners have told city officials they may convert the building at 1100 Cleveland St. into residential condominiums. The property on the northeast corner of Cleveland Street and Greenwood Avenue was purchased in October for $5.7-million by Clearwater Centre LLC, a family partnership headed by a couple who live in Bolingbrook, Ill. “I’m working on some different things,’ said Guy M. Bonneville, reached at his home in Illinois. “There’s nothing I can disclose at this time. Right now, it’s an office building and, for now, it will continue on as an office building.” Clearwater Planning Director Cyndi Tarapani said the new owners first came to city officials with a plan to convert the building into an assisted living facility. But several more recent meetings have focused on redesigning the building for residential condominiums, perhaps with some retail stores on the ground floor, she said. Tarapani said the owners have discussed renovating the exterior, as well as doing extensive interior work. “It’s an older building and bit outdated,” Tarapani said. The building was erected in 1972 and sits next door to the home of the Clearwater Regional Chamber of Commerce. Beth Coleman, the new president of the chamber, said condominiums would be a welcome change for the building. “I know there has been an effort to get more downtown residential and certainly we (the chamber) feel that would be a benefit,” Coleman said. Condos create much needed, “built-in foot traffic” for downtown, she said. The Clearwater Centre would be one of a handful of major condo projects planned for the downtown. Opus South, the company with a contract to purchase the downtown Calvary Baptist properties, is also interested in redeveloping the City Hall site with a mix of office, residential and retail space. After months of delay, city officials expect developers of the Station Square project on Cleveland Street to start construction on their 146-unit condo tower in late spring. And the buyers of the AmSouth Bank building have discussed building hundreds of condominiums above retail stores. At the north end of downtown, developers plan a 60-unit townhouse and condominium project off N Garden Avenue and a nearly 200-unit project immediately north of the Church of Scientology’s Osceola Inn. Bonneville said it is too early to speculate on what will become of the rectangular building his family recently purchased. They also own the Courtyard office park on Court Street just east of Missouri Avenue. In addition, they own Holiday Tower, a six-story office complex on U.S. 19 in Holiday. That complex is for sale. Bonneville said his wife’s parents, also principals in the family company, have long vacationed in Sand Key. Now that they spend more than half the year in Florida, he said, the family decided to sell its properties in Illinois and to purchase some in Florida. Source: http://www.sptimes.com/2005/02/23/Northpinellas/Downtown_office_build.shtml
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