The Orlando Business Journal has come out with a report stating that next month will be the start of work being done on the Orlando Magic's brand new $200 million construction project of an entertainment and sports complex that would be right across the street from Amway Center. Obviously before construction can be kicked off, the existing properties on Church Street - across from the arena - need to be destroyed.
The Magic are expected to start demolishing existing buildings next month on the site near Amway Center, said Thomas Chatmon, executive director of the Downtown Development Board, during a May 7 real estate conference.
The project is slated to include 100,000 square feet of office space, 250 hotel rooms with 40,000 square feet of meeting space, 250 residential units, 64,000 square feet of retail space and a parking garage.There are still a lot of details that are still unknown. One of them includes tenants, especially for which company will run the hotel. Could there be a casino? I would be surprised, but I'm certainly not opposed to a casino. Money talks, and casinos can bring in an awful lot of revenue. It's rumored that some of the Magic's current team partners could move into the new complex office space. We do know that the Magic will be able to have their entire headquarters just a brief stroll from Amway Center. That's part of Phase 1 that also includes rebuilding the parking garage.
We know that the retail business, the restaurants, the hotel, and the office spaces will help in continuing the improved economic development of the Parramore community. That will tie-in nicely with the soccer-specific stadium for Orlando City that will open in early 2016 just a few blocks West. We know that as many as 1,000 new jobs will be created during the construction process and the running of the facilities. We know the necessary parcels of land were bought up late last year which include the current city's police headquarters on Hughey Avenue.
It's unclear if the Magic have been able to agree to terms yet in regards to buying and relocating the Orlando Resuce Mission on Central Boulevard and Division Avenue, but an agreement doesn't need to be in place at this time for Phase 1 of the entertainment and sports complex to be given the green light in June. Just like a new police station will be found, so will a new sanctuary for the city's homeless. This new complex would signify another positive step in growing Orlando.
Considering how successful the 2012 NBA All-Star Weekend was despite it being during the Lockout-shortened season, it is well known that Orlando could host the spectacle again in 2017 or 2018. The 2015 event will be held in New York City next year, while 2016 will go to Toronto, Canada. The '12 All-Star Weekend hosted in Orlando saw an economic impact well above $100 million. Having convention center space and another upscale hotel that's closer than the Grand Bohemian on Orange Avenue and South Street raises that appeal for NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and other All-Star decision makers to want to return to Orlando sooner rather than later.