BOYNTON BEACH, FL-Nearly seven months after getting shareholder approval, the $510-million purchase of Briny Breezes has collapsed. Ocean Land Investments of Boca Raton decided to cancel its purchase agreement after the board of directors of the Town Briny Breezes turned down a request to extend the due diligence period.Ocean Land Investments initially had until Aug. 10 to complete its due diligence, but the developer wanted to extend that date to Sept. 28. The board denied the request late last week. Ocean Land now believes it would be impossible to complete the due diligence before the end of September.

“The development team asked the board of Briny Breezes for an extension so that we could further evaluate the issues of compatibility and density, as extensively detailed by the Florida Department of Community Affairs (DCA) in their response to the Town’s Comprehensive Plan Amendment,” H. Logan Pierson, Ocean Land’s vice president of acquisitions, says in a statement. “Among other reasons, the additional time was requested to enable us to meet with relevant civic and political leaders so that we could respond to the concerns of the DCA and of our neighbors. Though we certainly respect the board’s decision, we are disappointed that they did not recognize the need for these extra days. The DCA process has been extraordinary in its depth and detail. Our response must be as rigorous and thorough.

“To say that we are saddened with Briny’s reluctance to grant us an extension is a tremendous understatement,” Pierson adds. “The extra time would permit us to confer with the neighboring communities, which is clearly mandated by the recent DCA report. Meeting with the neighboring towns and interested parties is an integral part of the process as well as the most time consuming.”

He explains that during due diligence, Ocean Land executives learned that the company’s original plan for Briny Breezes would have to be reduced. He adds that the company still supports the Briny Breezes redevelopment and Ocean Land executives have asked Palm Beach County Commissioner Mary McCarty for help in meeting with neighboring towns Gulf Stream and Ocean Ridge to address some concerns, which has been set for Aug. 22, according to a release.

As reported in January, the $510-million deal would have given each of the 488 shareholders/mobile home owners more than $1 million. Ocean Land’s conceptual plans for the site called for 900 condominiums with 3,100 sf that sell for $3 million, a 300-unit hotel near the beach, a 300-unit fractional ownership property, a reconfigured marina and yacht club.

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