West Palm Beach might reconsider a business district that would encourage downtown office development through rezoning.
Mayor Jeri Muoio directed city staff to revive planning for the Okeechobee Business District downtown, which the city commission rejected last year.
The proposed district would have rezoned an area that now limits the height of buildings to five stories. But opponents saw the proposal as an attempt to promote one development within the district: One Flagler, a 25-story office building proposed by The Related Companies, led by Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross.
Mayor Muoio told the city’s development services director, Rick Greene, to revive planning for the Okeechobee Business District to encourage downtown office development.
The city’s Planning Board is scheduled to consider the district on May 15. The five-member city commission may have enough votes to approve the Okeechobee Business District this year. Two of the three votes against the district last year were cast by city commissioners who are no longer in office.
It is unclear whether the district would again include the land where Related wanted to build a 25-story office building, which opponents had denounced as “spot zoning.”
Gopal Rajegowda, senior vice president of Related, said the company’s focus in West Palm Beach is developing an office building at another downtown site at Rosemary Avenue and Evernia Street.
Source: The Real Deal