Envisioning a Gateway to West Palm Beach

A vacant piece of property holds tremendous potential. The right development can transform that property and the surrounding area – ushering in a community’s renaissance. The wrong move can lead to further languishing and potentially serious financial losses.

RMA has extensive experience with evaluating, planning, and implementing redevelopment strategies for clients which has enables them to craft the best possible scenarios for success, and recently the City of West Palm Beach turned to the redevelopment experts to advise them about a vacant seven acre parcel of land.

“The property on 8111 South Dixie Highway is truly the gateway to the city,” said Allison Justice, RMA’s Director of Operations. “So it is imperative that the new vision fulfill this dynamic mission. Our first step was to assess the surrounding properties.” The area includes an underutilized shopping area, the Palm Coast Plaza, which occupies 20 acres and a municipal golf course of 196 acres that is in need of repair and a new clubhouse. There is also a canal adjacent to the golf course and the 8111 property, which could potentially become a re-envisioned waterfront for the community.

“After gaining an understanding of the full scope of the property and the adjacent areas, we did a complete assessment of the current market,” explained Justice. “Next, we engaged the community to determine what the community wanted to see, then worked together to determine which goals could be achievable through new development.”

For redevelopment projects, working with the community, city officials and developers takes skillful negotiations with all sides being willing to cooperate.

RMA always keeps these key questions in mind:

-To achieve what the community wants, what would the city need to GIVE?

-What desires would the community and city each need to GIVE UP to reach a compromise?

-What would the city EXPECT from developers?

“From our research and the community engagement process, we developed four scenarios with different levels of development on each site,” she continued. “Essentially, we shared with the community how they could benefit if they could attract a developer to improve the golf course and add public amenities in exchange for the development of residential units on all three properties.”

RMA’s goal was to highlight for the public the exciting potential of their community, so developers would be enticed. The Commission voted to continue the discussion with developers and Palm Coast Plaza, with the ultimate goal of structuring a deal to that would enhance the community amenities, start development and revitalize the South End Gateway of West Palm Beach.

Stay tuned for next steps!