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BRADENTON, FL-Miami-based Adler Group has purchased West Lake Plaza, 26.5 acres of commercial land on the southeast corner of State Road 70 and 45th Street East (Lockwood Ridge Road) from Civix SR70 LLC for $9 million.

This is the second acquisition made under the company’s Florida Retail Land Bank, an investment fund that purchases prime retail land throughout Florida in anticipation of future retail development. With the acquisition, Adler has more than 50 acres in the land bank in Bradenton and Fort Pierce. “We’ve allocated $50 million for the first round of acquisitions for the land bank,” Adler Group EVP Matt Adler tells GlobeSt.com.

Adler says the most recent location has potential for retail development because of its accessibility and nearby residential growth. The property faces SR 70, a major through street in Bradenton with direct access to Interstate 75 and Lockwood Ridge Road, a major north-south connector. “Based on our market research and the neighboring retailers, we believe there is a high demand for additional retail in the area,” Adler says. “West Lake Plaza has the potential to attract sought-after retailers and restaurants which will bring much needed convenience and entertainment to the community.”

The site, previously occupied by Winn-Dixie, contains a 47,900-sf building, which has been closed for years. While most land bank acquisitions are made based on a two-to-five-year time frame for development, plans for the West Lake Plaza site may be developed more quickly. Adler plans to raze the existing building, eventually adding space for anchors, in-line stores and outparcels by 2008. “This site is probably 18 to 24 months away from development,” Adler says. “We’re in the early stages of site development and have had some talks with potential tenants.”

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