lake worth beach cra logoLAKE WORTH COMMUNITY REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY
REGULAR MEETING
HATCH 1121
1121 Lucurne Ave.
Tuesday, February 11, 2020 | 6:00 P.M.

 

 

I. ROLL CALL:

The Recording Secretary called the meeting to order at 6:01p.m. on the above date at HATCH 1121, Lake Worth Beach, Florida.

Present were CRA Members Brendan Lynch, Brent Whitfield, Drew Bartlett, John Paxman & Leah Foertsch.
Also present was CRA Director, Joan Oliva

II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:

III. AGENDA – ADDITIONS/DELETIONS/REORDERING:

IV. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION ON NON-AGENDAED ITEMS (3-minute limit):

Anna-Maria Windish-Hunt- Id like to compliment you on your Christmas lighting of this building. It’s fabulous.

Richard Stowe- I wanted to comment on a landscape change in the Historic Old Town District that I observed last week. Two structures designed by an esteemed architect, Arthur Laberon, were demolished. What was left was a category 1 invasive tree. It’s interesting to me because this block is a superblock of architectural rock stars and many of these were designed by the designer who designed the sky line of Ottawa, Canada. At some point, Id like to share the other architects with you.

V. CONSENT AGENDA

a. Agency Official Name Change- Adopt Lake Worth Beach CRA
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to approve the consent agenda

seconded by Mr. Paxman.

Vote: All Ayes

VI. MINUTES:

a. November 12, 2019
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to approve the November 12th minutes seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Vote: All Ayes

b. December 10, 2019
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to approve the December 10th minutes seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Vote: All Ayes

VII. PRESENATION AGENDA:

a. Lake Worth Beach Census- Jessica Savidge

 VIII. ACTION AGENDA

Mr. Tolces, Board Attorney, stated we need to add an item to the agenda regarding the most recent line of credit with PNC Bank. I ask that the Board make a motion to amend the agenda to add item E the approval of an amendment to the PNC Loan Agreement.

Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield add item E he approval of an amendment to the PNC Loan Agreement seconded by Mr. Bartlett.

Vote: All Ayes

a. CRA Facade Grant 17 South ‘J’ Street – Review and Determine Funding
The Commercial Grant Programs offered by the CRA were designed to leverage public funds with private investment, leading to new commercial projects, businesses, job creation and the preservation of historic buildings throughout the District. Late last year, Mr. Gary Goldring (property owner representing Village Green Group South, LLC), purchased the property at 17 South ‘J’ Street, widely known as the BamBoo Room. This two-story, 8100 sq.ft. building was built in 1922 and was originally known as the ‘Paradise Building’. The three existing tenants at 17 South J Street include: Revelry Bar, Rudy's Stand Up Pub and The Bamboo Room. Mr. Goldring believes that by renovating the building (including the rear patios and balcony) customers will significantly increase thereby resulting in increased commerce and employment opportunities at all three businesses. The businesses are expected to remain during the renovation project.

Although this historic structure has continued to accommodate various food, beverage & entertainment establishments, minimal improvements to the exterior of the building have been performed over the past 10 years. Moreover, Mr. Goldring has notified Staff that his intent includes the possible renovation of other historic buildings along J Street.

In January, Mr. Goldring submitted a CRA Commercial Façade Grant application for the CRA to assist with the cost of additions and upgrades to the exterior of the building. These improvements include, but are not limited to:

• New hurricane rated windows and doors
• Removal of Bahamian style shutters on 2nd floor. Replaced with new awnings.
• New awnings on first floor.
• Landscaping and paver improvements to rear of the property.
• Exterior painting and patching.
• Other aesthetic improvements to the front façade are under review.

The CRA’s Commercial Facade Grant offers matching funds up to $25,000 per parcel or project. The applicant has advised Staff that the total costs of these exterior improvements could exceed $200,000. The CRA grant funds are only to be used to cover permanent exterior improvements and their associated construction costs excluding construction management costs.

If awarded, the funds would be reimbursed to the applicant (property owner) after the project has been completed and a certificate of occupancy or all building permits have been closed out. Copies of invoices and corresponding canceled checks would also need to be provided and thoroughly reviewed. In addition, a lien would ensure that the building owner would not be able to sell or transfer the property within two years of receiving the funds or they risk having to repay the grant.

Creating programs and using financial incentives to facilitate new investments in the CRA district and maintaining the historic character of Lake Worth Beach are primary objectives of the CRA’s Redevelopment Plan.

Staff supports the use of the Commercial Facade Grant to assist with the exterior renovation work at 17 South J Street. A representative of the project and/or building owner will be present to answer any questions at the CRA Board meeting.

Staff recommended the Board review and award funding for up to $25,000 as part of the CRA’s Commercial Facade Grant. The applicant would enter into a grant agreement and funds would be reimbursed to the property owner only after completion of the project and paid invoices are provided to the CRA.

Action: Motion was made by Mr. Bartlett to award funding for up to $25,000 as a part of the CRA’s Commercial Façade at the property located at 17 South J Street, seconded by Mr. Whitfield.

Vote: All Ayes

b. CRA Facade Grant 502 Lucerne Ave. – Review and Determine Funding
The Commercial Grant Programs offered by the CRA were designed to leverage public funds with private investment, leading to new commercial projects, businesses and job creation throughout the CRA District. In 2015, the property at 502 Lucerne Avenue was acquired by the Peters family who have since been searching for a quality tenant to reactivate the space. This property was formerly known as South Shore Bar before eventually closing 4 years ago. Since then, the former restaurant/bar has sat vacant in the historic downtown.

In mid-2019, the Peters family leased the space to Ms. Andrea Jourdan & Ms. Nancy Isabelle. Ms. Jourdan is an accomplished writer and chef specializing in French and Mediterranean cuisine. Ms. Jourdan and Ms. Isabelle have been diligently working to reactivate this space into a 110 seat high-end restaurant with indoor and outdoor seating. The once popular garden in the back of the property is also being extensively rebuilt in order to provide upscale outdoor dining. Since June of 2019, the new tenants have been gutting and renovating the interior of the building. Once complete, the 2400 sq. ft. restaurant will have an entirely new appearance with modern décor, new kitchen, bar and furnishings. The owners of the business would like to open the restaurant before the end of this tourist season.

In November 2019, Ms. Ariana Peters (property owner) submitted a CRA Commercial Façade Grant application for the CRA to assist with the cost of additions and upgrades to the exterior of the building. These improvements include:

• New hurricane rated shutters along the front windows of the building
• New potted plants and landscaping to be placed primarily along the front of the building
• New large awning along the front of the building to support outdoor seating
• New exterior electrical service, lighting and ceiling fans to support outdoor seating
• Repairs to the back/side wood fence

Due to the need for the business to open before the end of the tourist season, and as a result of other scheduling conflicts, the applicant has submitted the façade grant application for approval even though some of the improvements may have already been completed or are in process.

The CRA and applicant agree that although the improvements are eligible for assistance, the Board would need to formally agree to award the grant for all work that has been completed or is currently in process. These CRA grant funds are only to be used to cover permanent exterior improvements and their associated construction costs.

The CRA’s Commercial Facade Grant offers matching funds up to $25,000 per parcel or project. The applicant has advised Staff that the total costs of these exterior improvements will slightly exceed $50,000.

If awarded, the funds would be reimbursed to the applicant (property owner) after the project has been completed and a certificate of occupancy or all building permits have been closed out. Copies of invoices and corresponding canceled checks would also need to be provided and thoroughly reviewed. In addition, a lien would ensure that the building owner would not be able to sell or transfer the property within two years of receiving the funds or they risk having to repay the grant.

Creating programs and using financial incentives to facilitate new investments in the CRA district and creating new jobs are primary objectives of the Redevelopment Plan. In 2019, the CRA Board awarded this applicant an additional $25,000 from the CRA’s Interior Improvement Grant program which is being used to facilitate extensive improvements inside the building.

Staff supports the use of the Commercial Facade Grant to assist with the renovation work at 502 Lucerne Ave. A representative of the project and/or building owner will be present to answer any questions at the CRA Board meeting.

Staff recommended the Board review and award funding for an amount not to exceed $25,000 as part of the CRA’s Commercial Facade Grant. The applicant would enter into a grant agreement and funds would be reimbursed to the property owner only after completion of the project and paid invoices are provided to the CRA.

Action: Motion was made by Mrs. Foertsch to award funding for up to $25,000 as a part of the CRA’s Commercial Façade at the property located at 502 Lucerne Avenue grant seconded by Mr. Whitfield.

The applicant Andrea Jourdan, was present to answer the Board’s questions.

Juan Contin-we are working hard to try to get this thing going again.

Vote: All Ayes

c. Re-finance of Loans with PNC Bank for Property Acquisition
At the December 10, 2019 Board meeting, the Board approved the refinancing of two CRA debentures; one for $4M (2016) and another for $1.5 (2018). The funding from these two debentures were used for property acquisition. By refinancing, the CRA saves approximately $100K over the course of remaining seven years with the interest rate going from 4.6% to just below 4.0% (the specific percentage rate will be determined at closing. A Resolution is needed by PNC to finalize the needed amendments.

Staff recommended the Board approve Resolution 20-03 allowing the refinancing of the Lake Worth Beach CRA’s debentures and authorize the Chair, Vice Chair and/or Executive Director to sign needed documents.

Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to approve Resolution #20-03 allowing the refinancing of the LWB CRA’s debentures and authorize the Chair, Vice Chair and or Executive Director to sign the needed documents seconded by Mr. Bartlett.

Mr. Paxman asked if the interest would be under 4%. Staff stated that was correct.

Vote: All Ayes

d. 1000 Lake Avenue
In February 2018, the CRA executed a purchase and sale and development agreement with 1000 Lake, LLC. for the renovation and sale of 1000 Lake Avenue. Since that time, the developer, Oak Lane, has submitted several updates and reports on the status of the renovations and plans for the building, once complete. On February 10, 2020, Staff received a letter from Oak Lane requesting an extension to the development timetable. According to the Agreement, the Executive Director may extend the timeline, not to exceed 180 days. Since the deadline for many of the tasks were over six months behind schedule, an administrative extension is not possible.

Pursuant to the Purchase and Sale Agreement and Development Agreement, the CRA has the right to exercise its right to repurchase the property within 730 days of the effective date of the Agreement. In order to exercise the right to repurchase, the CRA must send a binding notice of the CRA’s intent to repurchase the property to 1000 Lake, LLC within 730 days from the effective date of the agreement, or the right shall be waived. Since the agreement was signed by the CRA on February 13, 2018, any notice of the CRA’s intent to repurchase the property must be sent to 1000 Lake, LLC before February 13, 2020. Otherwise, the CRA waives the right to repurchase 1000 Lake Ave.

Although the CRA may amend the development agreement after taking into consideration the letter from Bhavin Shah from Oak Lane, Staff felt it necessary to send a notice in case the Board, wanted instead, to repurchase the building. The agreements are included for the Board’s review, and Staff can either renegotiate a development timetable with Mr. Shah or move forward with the repurchase of the building.

Because Staff received full site plans, ready to be submitted to the City by 4:00, February 10, 2020, Staff recommended the Board instruct Staff to develop a strict timeline for submission, permitting, and construction, and bring an amendment to the agreement to the Board for its March, 2020 meeting.

Juan Contin- stated that the major site plan is ready to be submitted to the City as early as tomorrow. One of the issues on the time line is that construction can start as early as August of this year. The building will have a 4 story façade. The building will now include a sky bar and lots of historic elements. The idea was to have a continuous parking lot with nice landscape. The City wanted to allow Oak Lane to use the public parking to the north.

• Property was sold to 1000 Lake, LLC in March 2018
• Under P & S and Development Agreement 1000 Lake LLC had 30 days to meet the development timelines
• CRA received $300K for the property in 2018
• CRA can choose to exercise its right of repurchase for $300K
• The timeline to get this letter out would be February 13
• Board must consider taking action this evening to issue the letter to exercise the right of repurchase
• This will allow the CRA the right to negotiate new timelines, new requirements and the new development plan

Action: Motion was made by Mr. Paxman to approve a letter being sent to 1000 Lake Ave LLC exercising the CRA’s rights to repurchase the building seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.

Rachel Shapiro- My partner and I are working on a food hall concept that would bring 10 different flavors of restaurants to 1000 Lake Avenue. This is in alignment with the City/CRA’s Cultural Master Plan. This is an opportunity to highlight the best of what we have in Lake Worth Beach. Keep an eye on the long-term view of what is really possible here.

Vote: All Ayes

e. Approval of Amendment to PNC Loan Agreement
At the last meeting, the $1.5M line of credit was approved. As part of the agreement there are specific references to account numbers. Approving the amendment will remove the specific references.

Action: Motion was made by Paxman to approve the amendment to the PNC Loan Agreement seconded by Mr. Bartlett.

Vote: All Ayes

IX. EXECUTIVE DIRECTORS’ REPORT:

a. Progress Report

X. BOARD MEMBERS’ COMMENTS:

Leah Foertsch- No comment.
John Paxman- No comment.
Brent Whitfield- My first Board meeting was 1000 Lake in 2018. I am glad that we are sending the letter so that we can keep some leverage. Since I have been on the Board the quality of interest from developers has been incredible. I appreciate the architect bringing new renderings Id like to see this new agreement give us some leverage to push this thing out of the ground.
Brendan Lynch- I encourage everyone to take advantage of the Street Painting Festival tickets. I am excited to see what will happen at 1000 Lake Avenue. We need to push this along as quickly as we can.
John Paxman- I agree with Brent and Brendan. Check out my artwork at the Street Painting Festival.

XI. ADJOURNMENT:

Meeting adjourned at 7:03 p.m.

Minutes Approved:

Brendan Lynch, Chair, CRA Board 

Emilia Theodossakos, Recording Secretary

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