By: Jen Russon
Downtown Coral Springs is slated to get a new look with the proposed construction of the Cornerstone project.
Last March, a Boca Raton based property investment company began working with the city on the $200 million dollar private redevelopment project on the southwestern corner of University Drive and Sample Road. Led by PreDevCo developer, Rod Sheldon, he said that so far it’s been a smooth process.
“The city has been great handling all the moving parts of this, especially the late Skip Campbell who — may he rest in peace — was a pleasure to work with,” said Sheldon.
Cornerstone, which he described as being the heart of downtown Coral Springs, is proposed where the Financial Plaza now stands. Built in 1974, the plaza will soon be replaced with twin apartment towers, a movie theater and hotel, restaurants and an organic grocery store.
Pending a public hearing and the city commission’s final approval, construction on the project should begin sometime next year.
“We anticipate demolition of the plaza within the first few months of 2019, and having the new structures built and vendor occupied by 2020,” said Sheldon.
Responsible for the new Pei Wei Asian Diner and Chase Bank on University Drive, Sheldon equates the Cornerstone project as a renaissance for Coral Springs. He remarked that he has always liked this city, and that he and Coral Springs go way back.
“As a young man, I remember applying for a mortgage on my first home at the financial plaza,” said Sheldon.
His nostalgia is tempered with the same excitement that city commissioner Dan Daley said he is feeling.
“After 25 years of talk, downtown Coral Springs with shops, restaurants, entertainment, hotel and other uses will become a reality.”
Daley added that Cornerstone is one of the biggest things to happen in this city, and that the heavy construction that will go on at the intersection the cross streets will be worth it to residents and visitors alike.
“While I think we will need to take traffic into consideration, the overall development will be positive for our community,” said Daley.
Cornerstone will join the landscape near the new city hall, which opened to the public in January of this year.
The new structures that will comprise Cornerstone will occupy eight acres of land. One of the twin apartment towers – the larger one with 300 units – is designed for families; the other, smaller tower will be a senior community of age 55+.
The hotel being built at Cornerstone will stand seven stories and offer guests a view from the rooftop bar. A fitness center is also planned.
Jen Russon is a freelance writer and English Language Arts teacher. She has published two novels to Amazon Kindle and lives in Coral Springs with her family.