Two projects to bring grocery stores to Daytona Beach's booming LPGA Boulevard corridor are closer to becoming a reality.
General contractor Jon M. Hall Company recently began clearing land on the north side of LPGA Boulevard, just west of Interstate 95, to make way for a highly anticipated Publix-anchored shopping center called Latitude Landings.
"We expect to go vertical with the first phase before the end of the year and opening in late 2019," said the project's developer Sam Sutton, president of Sutton Properties.
The 85,000-square-foot initial phase will include a 48,000-square-foot Publix Supermarket as well as a 14,000-square-foot Publix liquor store.
"We look forward to announcing some more tenants closer to the end of the year," he said, adding that the initial phase will include a restaurant.
Meanwhile, a new developer has taken over another planned retail project just east of Interstate 95: a grocery store-anchored retail center called Williamson Ridge Shopping Center at the northeast corner of LPGA and Williamson boulevards.
Tailwinds Development is best known locally for developing the Publix grocery store-anchored Country Club Corners shopping center in DeLand.
The Lake Mary-based developer recently erected "COMING SOON Grocery Anchored Center" signs for its latest project.
The developer is also circulating fliers to local commercial real estate agents and brokers that include a site map for Williamson Ridge showing three available outparcels in yellow as well as two connected "inline" store pads in red.
The outparcels would allow two standalone stores of up to 9,000 square feet in size and one of up to 7,000 square feet.
The inline stores would be a 30,000-square-foot yet-to-be named grocer and an adjacent 14,000 square foot pad, also for a tenant yet to be determined.
The disclosure of Tailwind's pending land purchase comes a year-and-a-half after seller Consolidated-Tomoka Land Co. announced that a developer had put the property under contract.
The site is an L-shaped property that borders the existing 2-story Concierge office building at 1616 Concierge Blvd., both on its west and north sides.
At the time, Consolidated-Tomoka CEO John Albright said the planned project would be anchored by a "specialty grocer" new to the Volusia-Flagler area.
After recently announcing its pending deal with Tailwinds, Albright said in a phone interview that only the developer had changed for the project.
"The grocer is the same grocer," he said. He added, however, that the Daytona Beach store would no longer be the chain's first locally.
While he wouldn't confirm the grocery chain's identity, one national specialty grocer to recently announced plans to expand to the Volusia-Flagler area is Lucky's Market.
The Boulder, Colorado-based upscale grocer signed a long-term lease for the former beachside Food Lion building on East Granada Boulevard in Ormond Beach that is set to open in March 2019.
Jim Gendrau, the owner/president of Tailwinds, declined to identify the grocer for his company's planned Williamson Ridge Shopping Center.
"We are working to get that grocery store," he said before adding that his company has not yet signed any tenants.
"I'd say stay tuned in the next 60 to 90 days," he said.
"We are looking for a grocery store to be our main anchor with some retail shops on the outparcels," Gendreau said. "Our goal is to get a national specialty grocer."
Gendreau added that he expects to close his purchase of the 11-acre site in mid-December.
The two grocery stores set to be built by Sutton and Tailwinds will serve a growing area surrounding the I-95/LPGA interchange where thousands of new homes, as well as apartments, are planned.
The new residential projects include Minto Communities' 6,600-home Jimmy Buffett-themed Latitude Margaritaville 55-and-older community and ICI Homes' 1,200-home all-ages Mosaic "full life" community.
The area already includes the established Bayberry Lakes and LPGA International communities.
The closest grocery stores for residents in that area are currently the Publix and Walmart Supercenter several miles to the north at the intersection of West Granada and Williamson boulevards in Ormond Beach.
"Having convenient and accessible retail outlets contiguous to the Latitude residences has always been the vision," said Bill Bullock, president of Minto's Latitude Margaritaville division.
"This is what defines a true community as opposed to just another housing tract," he said.
Sutton said Jon M. Hall Company is also clearing land for the planned 115,000-square-foot second phase of Latitude Landings.
The I-95/LPGA area in recent years also became home to the Tanger Outlets mall that opened along the east side of I-95 in November 2016 and the new Tomoka Town Center "power lifestyle" center across the street from Tanger where a number of "junior box" retailers as well as restaurants are either now open or are coming soon.
Stores already open at the power lifestyle center include Hobby Lobby, Burlington, Five Below and TJMaxx, to name a few. Among those still to come are Academy Sports + Outdoors, Dave & Buster's, Blaze Pizza, Ford's Garage, Culver's and Arby's.
A 276-unit apartment complex called Sands Parc Apartments also was completed last year on the east side of Williamson, one block north of LPGA Boulevard. Another apartment complex, called Tomoka Pointe, is now going up on the west side of Williamson, behind the new Tomoka Town Center complex. It, too, will have 276 dwelling units.
The area is also set to become home to the 100,000-square-foot Shoppes at Williamson Crossing retail center that Orlando-based Unicorp plans to build on the south side of LPGA Boulevard, between Williamson and Clyde Morris boulevards.
Other coming developments include a Sam's Club store on the southeast quadrant of the I-95/LPGA Boulevard interchange, a mixed-use development that New York-based Conner Capital Partners is planning on the property immediately east of Buc-ee's, and a large residential development called Tomoka Village that Unicorp is planning on the east side of Williamson, next to Sands Parc Apartments and the future Williamson Ridge Shopping Center.
"We love the (LPGA/Williamson) intersection," said Gendreau. "I always thought this intersection would explode. It's a gateway to what I call New Daytona."