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Landmark Center developement Fort Walton Beach
FORT WALTON BEACH -- FORT WALTON BEACH - Developers of the proposed 'Landmark Center" in Fort Walton Beach have good news. They say they can get their project started with less public money than they originally asked for. They'll make their pitch to the City Council Tuesday night.
Laura Hussey "Burrito Del Sol opened in downtown Fort Walton Beach last May. The owner says one reason they picked the location specifically is the prospect of the Landmark Center being built."
The kitchen stays busy at Burrito Del Sol, but owner Brooks Hammet says the Landmark Center will take everybody's business to a whole new level.
Brooks Hammet/Burrito Del Sol "It adds more legitimacy to downtown, and of course increased traffic is definitely going to help out"
The latest set of plans includes a 112-room Hilton Home 2 Suites hotel, managed by Innisfree of Pensacola. It adds a skybar and rooftop restaurant....run by chef Ernie Danjean who's made a name at Dockside in Niceville. There would be condos, retail, restaurants.....and a parking garage with 119 spots dedicated to the city.
The owner of Dragonfly Yoga says lots of new people will be exposed to the area.
Laura Tyree/Dragonfly Yoga "It's going to add to what's happening downtown. It's going to give us more parking for our events, and for the Downtown events. It's going to bring people in not only living downtown, but also visiting downtown"
Landmark has met roadblocks since it was unveiled in 2007.....the bad economy, and lengthy negotiations with the city. The agreement now under consideration eliminates a package of grants and other incentives from the city, totaling 1.4 million dollars. Developers would get an additional section of land worth about 200-thousand.
Property owner Valerie Wenzel says it will turn a blighted corner into a bonanza.
Valerie Wenzel/downtown property owner "It's going to provide jobs, it's going to add to the tax base, and it's going to be great for tourism"
Laura Hussey "There's a public hearing on the Landmark Center Development Tuesday night, and another on January 28."