Long Bar developers apply to form CDD, seek to cover $31M expenses

mjohnson@bradenton.comJuly 2, 2014 

MANATEE -- The developers of Long Bar Pointe have applied to form a community development district to defray an estimated $31 million in site development costs in the proposed bayfront residential community.

Bradenton homebuilder Carlos Beruff filed paperwork with Manatee County in June asking permission to form the CDD. In the application, the development company Beruff manages, Cargor Partners VIII/Long Bar Pointe, proposes forming the district to pay for site work, roads, landscaping, parks and other infrastructure. The improvements would go into a 61.5-acre portion of the Long Bar Pointe development in the 6600 block of El Conquistador Parkway.

The CDD would be named Aqua One.

A CDD is a local, government-like organization authorized by Florida to manage and finance infrastructure needed to develop a community. CDDs are private organizations that are an alternative to municipal incorporation.

The land tied to the CDD application is part of 522 acres along El Conquistador owned by companies operated by Beruff and business partner Larry Lieberman. The southeast end of the property abuts the Legends Bay housing development.

The Board of Manatee County Commissioners will make the decision on whether to approve the CDD, said Miles Gentry, the county planning official reviewing the application. About three months of legal review will be required before the board addresses the application.

According to documents filed with Manatee County, Aqua One will fund the infrastructure construction program by issuing special assessments to future residents of the development or selling revenue bonds. The most expensive item on the list is clearing and grading, estimated at almost $5.4 million. Road construction adds up to about $4.3 million.

A construction and expense timetable submitted with the CDD filing shows work starting in 2014 and continuing through 2023.

On top of charging for development and infrastructure, the CDD may impose other assessments to pay for operating costs, estimated to be $116,000 a year.

The county planning commission gave Long Bar Pointe's developers tentative permission earlier this year to build up to 200 homes on 61 acres in the proposed, gated community.

An additional 1,200 homes could be built on the remaining Long Bar Point property, but they

would have to be approved separately. Thus far, the developers have proposed building homes, a high-end hotel, a conference center and office and retail space at Long Bar Pointe.

In addition to laying out the expenses to be handled by the CDD, the developers have named the members of the first board of supervisors for Aqua One. Designated to serve until an election can be carried out among future Aqua One residents are Peter Logan, Charles Tokarz, John Wollard, Connor Chambers and Margo Holeman. Logan, Tokarz and Wollard previously served as directors for the Riva Trace Homeowners Association. Beruff's construction company, Medallion Home, built that Manatee County community.

Chambers is a consultant who has worked on the Long Bar Pointe project.

Long Bar Pointe has undergone changes since it was first proposed. Initially, the project was planned to include 1,086 single family homes, more than 2,500 multifamily homes and a marina. The project was pared down after a meeting last summer drew a crowd of about 1,000 people to a meeting concerning land use changes at Long Bar Pointe.

Neither Beruff nor Lieberman responded to requests to comment on the formation of the CDD. The developers paid $16,000 for the CDD application.

Matt M. Johnson, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7027, or on Twitter @MattAtBradenton.

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