Connecting the Dots of Bayfront 20:20


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, March 3rd, 2016 – More sweet spots look ready to arise in Sarasota, as dots begin to link for major planned developments at the Bayfront just north of the downtown. A boon particularly for nearby properties like the pre-construction condos of Risdon on 5th, these projects fall under Bayfront 20:20, the vision to synchronize developments in a prime 75-acre bayside area.

Impetus to this vision was provided February 2016 on talks for a makeover of the Van Wezel Performing Arts and continuing progress on development plans for the nearby Quay property by GreenPointe Communities. The Van Wezel initiative, which will be pursued by a non-profit offshoot of Bayfront 20:20, calls for the construction of a new, 2,100- to 2,400-seat venue at an estimated cost of between $150 million and $525 million.

Cultural Park Eyed

Connecting the Dots of Bayfront 20:20

This proposal was put forward from a study commissioned by the Van Wezel Foundation as part of the Sarasota Bayfront 20:20 master plan. Under this master blueprint, a “Cultural Park” will be constructed in the 41-acre city property around the Van Wezel hall. If all goes smooth, the Bayfront 20:20 coalition, which is composed of 50 local private business groups and community organizations, would like to see construction at the bayfront start by December 2017.

Separately, the Sarasota Orchestra adjacent east of the Van Wezel is working on a concept plan for a new a new concert hall. Bayfront 20:20 leaders are now exploring possible areas of synergy on the planned venues for the future needs of the two cultural performance centers which have definitely contributed much to the marketability of downtown Sarasota condos for sale.

Sarasota Bayside Plans Bared

The same spirit of collaboration is being pursued by GreenPointe Communities in the 15-acre Quay parcel it will develop just south of the Van Wezel and Sarasota Orchestra. This project, which has been named Sarasota Bayside, will create a new district welcoming the public and embracing the city’s arts and entertainment scene, the Jacksonville-based developer said. It emphasized that instead of a distinct project, what would be created is a community with strong links to its neighboring districts through pedestrian-friendly streets and public spaces like an amphitheater.

Entitlements earlier granted to the property in a past attempt at development will be pursued. GreenPointe hopes to start infrastructure work costing as much as $50 million within this year. This property has previously been approved for a 175-room hotel, 695 condo units, 189,050 square feet of retail space, and 20,000 square feet of office space.

All in all, some 75 acres of prime Sarasota real estate are at play in the vision of Bayfront 20:20. Besides the 41-acre city property envisioned as the Cultural Park and GreenPointe’s 15-acre Quay site, it also covers 7 acres of the individually owned Proscenium property and 11-acre Centennial Park.

Risdon Shares the Show

All these sources of bayfront excitement rub off to nearby Rosemary District where one new condo project, Risdon on 5th, started pre-construction selling this February. Described as an artfully-designed and sophisticated mixed-use development, it features 28 units consisting of 18 residential condos, four penthouses, and six commercial spaces.

Located at 5th Street just a block east of Sarasota Bayside, the Risdon residences just listed amongst Sarasota condos for sale have floor plans ranging from about 750 square feet up to nearly 2,000 square feet. Their price points start at close to the $300s and top at around the mid-$800s.