With some technical issues left to deal with concerning rights of way on more than 200 acres of vacant land adjacent to Evers Reservoir in East Manatee County, housing developer Taylor Morrison was granted a 60-day extension of its due diligence period on Wednesday by the Bradenton City Council.
The city entered into a purchase agreement with Taylor Morrison in May for $12 million. Under the terms of the contract, the developer had a six-month due diligence period, which is about to expire. The developer now has until Nov. 14 to continue to determine if its proposed 500-unit housing development will work on the site.
“The key items are questions concerning an old right of way, and it may take some time to clear it up to make sure it’s done right,” said City Administrator Carl Callahan.
WCI Communities won the initial bidding war last year over five other bidders with an offer of $10.5 million and presented a concept that featured far less density. WCI, however, pulled out of the deal during its due diligence period, forcing the city to seek new bids.
Taylor Morrison was the only return developer in the latest bout of bidding and beat out Neal Communities, which only offered $6 million up front, but a percentage of each lot sold.
According to the purchase agreement, Taylor Morrison has placed $25,000 into escrow. At the end of the due diligence period, the company must deposit an additional $275,000. Closing could take more than a year, and Taylor Morrison is authorized to ask for up to two closing extensions but must deposit more money into escrow at each request.
Callahan said the language ensures Taylor Morrison would likely do everything possible to close on the deal in a timely manner.