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Sarasota Thursday, May 6, 2010 10 years ago

Pineapple Square development ripens

by: Robin Roy City Editor

The Pineapple Square development has been in a holding pattern for the past two-and-a-half years, waiting out the economy.

But some movement has finally been initiated.

Pineapple Square revealed that it has received a demolition permit for the building at 1501 Main St., which is across the street from Brooks Brothers.

In its place will go a one-story building with four storefronts that line both Main Street and Lemon Avenue.
Currently, the Lemon Avenue side of the building is just a painted wall with no windows.

John Simon, Pineapple Square developer, said he will announce in the coming weeks one of the new tenants — a national retail chain, which he said is in the same vein as Brooks Brothers.

Simon said he is in talks with three other tenants to occupy the remaining space.

Ernie Ritz, whose Ritz Construction Co. will be doing the demolition and construction, said the building needs to be demolished so Pineapple Square can maximize the use of its land.

“The building is set back 4 feet from (the right of way),” he said. “Main Street property is too valuable to waste like that.”

As for the rest of the Pineapple Square development, which includes more retail space, condos and a parking garage, Simon is going to wait until better market conditions exist.

Pineapple Square has received an extension of its construction deadline, which now runs until 2013.

Contact Robin Roy at [email protected].

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