Margaritaville, the long-anticipated resort expected to revive tourism along Hollywood's beach, is still on track, says the developer.
Lon Tabatchnick gave commissioners a brief update Wednesday on his $138 million project, promising to meet the city's April 10 deadline to get construction permits and work out a financing plan.
The 350-room, 17-story resort would rise on 5 acres near Johnson Street and the Broadwalk, with the developer leasing the city-owned land for 99 years.
Commissioner Linda Sherwood asked Tabatchnick to "squelch gossip going around town and reassure the public that he does have the money and the city doesn't have to dump any more money into it."
Key components of the deal include the city's redevelopment agency kicking in $23 million and investment group Starwood Capital investing $75 million.
Mayor Peter Bober reminded the commission of "all the jokers who have come through and promised the sun, moon and stars and never come through. We picked Lon because he has a track record."
Tabatchnick declined to answer questions from reporters, ducking quickly into an elevator.
"We're doing good, everything is doing good," he said before the doors closed.
Hollywood officials plan to hold another meeting March 20 for the next update.
Commissioner Patricia Asseff says the Jimmy Buffett-themed resort is bound to spur redevelopment along the beach.
"A lot of other developers are waiting to see what happens with Margaritaville before they move forward with their own projects," Asseff said. "The past couple years, it's been tough for everyone to get financing. Timing is everything."
The project is expected to bring 500 construction jobs, 350 permanent jobs and 3,000 direct and indirect jobs, City Manager Cathy Swanson-Rivenbark told commissioners.
"The developer has spent $6.5 million to date," she said.
The CRA's investment would be repaid within 15 years.
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