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FORT LAUDERDALE, FL-This city has recently decreed high-rise towers Downtown are out. Nevertheless, informed industry sources say Omni Equities Ltd. of Rye, NY has bought 1.75 acres of vacant land between Las Olas Boulevard and the New River to develop a 42-story apartment tower–the same height thatCharles Palmer of Sea Ranch Properties was forced to reduce recently on similar-planned property along the New River.

Palmer cut back plans for one of the buildings by 10 floors and the other by four.

Another developer, the Related Group of Florida, simply walked away from its proposal to build a 38-story apartment tower, also along the New River, rather than revise its plans to accommodate the city’s get-tough posture on building height.

Smith Property, a unit of multifamily developer Charles E. Smith Residential Realty based in Arlington, VA, paid $8 million when it bought the new Omni site from Atlantic Gulf Communities Corp. of Boca Raton. By selling to Omni for around $9 million, Smith made a gross profit of upwards of $1 million in less than a year.

Atlantic Gulf had already received local approvals to put up a 34-story, 375-unit apartment building.

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