The $1.5 million purchase comes as sports performance academy undergoes $198 million expansion
WEST BRADENTON -- IMG Academy has acquired 24 acres from Manatee Fruit Co. in a $1.5 million deal that closed July 2.
The land borders IMG's west campus, where the sports performance academy is undergoing a $198 million expansion.
The academy unveiled its $5.4 million fieldhouse in June as part of its expansion project, and started construction the same month on a three-story residence hall featuring 152 dorm rooms. The dorm should be completed by June 1, 2015, while a new school building should be completed by Aug. 1, 2015, and a student union constructed by December 2015. A performance center is also slated to be finished by June 2016, according to IMG officials.
Manatee Fruit's President Whiting Preston is requesting approval adjacent to IMG for a 1,300-acre planned community called Lake Flores that includes several commercial districts and 6,500 homes and apartments.
Within that plan, requests are being made to have 1 million square feet of retail space, 2 million square feet of office space and 375- and 125-room hotels.
Neither Preston nor a spokesman for IMG Academy returned phone calls for comment Tuesday.
Charles Schelle, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7095. Follow him on Twitter@ImYourChuck.