Corner property on Orlando’s Restaurant Row sells to local developer

A prime one-acre property alongOrlando’s famed Restaurant Row has sold for a hefty price tag — and the local buyer intends to redevelop it.

Moxie Investors LLC, an entity related to Maitland-based EquinoxDevelopment, paid $6.75 million for the 1-acre parcel at 7331 W. Sand LakeRoad in a deal that closed Oct. 13,Orange County records show.

Why this matters: Retail development projects create temporary construction jobs and may attract more investment. Additionally, the site of this possible redevelopment is within Orlando’s tourist corridor — one of the region’s most important economic drivers.

The property is at the northwest corner of West Sand Lake Road and Turkey Lake Road, adjacent a Chick-fil-A restaurant.

It was formerly a gas station and is between a quarter-mile and half-mile east of some of Restaurant Row’s most well-known destinations, such as Ocean Prime, Eddie V’s Prime Seafood and Rocco’s Tacos & Tequila Bar.

The seller in the transaction was a subsidiary of Dallas-based Spirit Realty Capital Inc., which acquired it in 2013 for $1.8 million.

Ryan Stahl, the president and CEO for Equinox, told Orlando Business Journal his firm considers the property one of the best pieces of real estate in the region and plans to redevelop the site.

Beyond that, however, he said he could not say much, indicating that the developer is still in the process of assessing the various retail opportunities it will have.

“So far, the interest from retailers has been well above what we projected,” Stahl told OBJ. “We are still sifting through the various offers, so it will be a couple of weeks before we’re able to make any announcements.”

Equinox has been a busy developer in the region, with recent projects including a joint-venture with Parkway Properties in Clermont, Keyser Corners in Altamonte Springs and other projects in Oviedo, Orlando on Kirkman Road and Daytona Beach.

Meanwhile, the retail outlook in the Central Florida region remains strong despite confusing signals from consumers, said JLL’s Justin Greider, who is not involved with the Restaurant Row project. In particular, Greider pointed out high consumer spending contrasting with low consumer confidence.

“While people may not be excited to be doing it, they still are spending money. We have not seen a pullback yet at all,” Greider said. “The No. 1 thing we’ll be watching in the next few months is tourism numbers from Thanksgiving through New Years. I think that’s going to be very informative for how consumers really are experiencing what’s going on.”

The tourist corridor retail submarket, where the redevelopment will occur, is also one of the region’s busiest, according to CoStar Group. Its 206,000 square feet of under-construction space is third-most in the region and its deliveries of 209,000 square feet in the past 12 months is second-highest.

The submarket’s average retail rent of $33.18 per square foot is third-highest in the larger market and it has an average vacancy rate is 3%. In comparison, metro Orlando has an average retail rent of $25.89 per square foot and a 3.7% average vacancy rate.

Steven Ryzewski
Staff Writer
Orlando Business Journal