Benderson Development is still planning to develop 25 acres of land near Siesta Key.
Despite the area’s economic revival — now five years in the making — the 25-acre property at U.S. 41 and Stickney Point Road in Sarasota County has remained fallow.
But Benderson Development Co. insists it has not abandoned plans to develop the former Pine Shores Mobile Home Park tract into a mixed-use project.
“We’re still formulating a site plan,” said Benderson’s Florida Director of Leasing Mark Chait. “But we’re still planning on developing it.”
Benderson became involved with the property in August 2005, after Sarasota’s Cogan Development Co. had initially proposed a $350 million mix of retail and condominium towers.
At the time, Benderson — a joint developer of the $315 million Mall at University Town Center with Michigan’s Taubman Centers Inc. — planned to start its Siesta Point project in mid-2006. The more than 200 mobile homes that had occupied the site were demolished and removed in 2008.
Derailed by the economic recession that same year, Benderson revitalized plans in 2012 with a new name and a new game plan for the property.
Siesta Promenade was being designed to contain a 150-room hotel and 250,000 square feet of retail space. In late 2014, Benderson indicated it hoped to start construction the following spring — despite neighborhood fears of increased traffic.
In recent months, a continued lack of activity on the land and nearby Benderson holdings at Southgate Mall and at Pelican Plaza, across from the Westfield Sarasota Square Mall, have sparked speculation that the company might sell Siesta Promenade to a residential developer.
Chait, however, maintains that Benderson will go forward with plans for the property.
“We’re absolutely not selling it to a residential builder,” he said.