The Downtown Improvement District endorsed Jesse Biter’s plans for a 90-unit apartment building next to the HuB at a meeting today.
Entrepreneur Jesse Biter is continuing his quest to add more attainable housing targeted at young professionals in downtown Sarasota, pursuing a plan to add 90 apartments next to the HuB business incubator.
Brian Jones, president of Jones Development Company, is teaming with Biter Enterprises on the project. At today’s Downtown Improvement District Meeting, Jones and Biter Project Manager Allison Hester presented an overview of the planned development, which would also serve to expand the square footage of the HuB itself.
The project, called the HuB Lofts, would produce a seven-story building on what is currently a parking lot for the HuB, located along Second Street near Goodrich Avenue. The 90 residential units would be targeted toward those who work at the business incubator — Jones said they’ve gotten inquiries from about 30 people at the HuB — and the general public interested in living closer to downtown Sarasota.
Those units, which would be one and two bedrooms, would average around 1,000 square feet and retail for around $1,600, Jones said. The ground floor of the building would be used as HuB office space. Jones said the existing HuB offices are 100% occupied with a waiting list, and the additional 5,500 square feet of office space and other amenities would help the for-profit incubator grow.
“I look at it like an overall campus we're creating,” Jones said. “It's not just an office, just apartments and they're separate. The residential portion will be able to use office amenities, and the office will be able to use residential amenities.”
At today’s meeting, the Downtown Improvement District offered a vote of support for the project, which would fall within the existing boundaries of the taxing district. Jones said that endorsement would help the developers secure funding for the project, and he said they’re working to begin construction by June 2016.
For more information on the HuB Lofts project, pick up a copy of Thursday’s Sarasota Observer.