Fort Lauderdale plans to build one of its first golf/entertainment

January 20, 2018

Fort Lauderdale could lease city land to Drive Shack, which plans to build one of its first golf/entertainment complexes in Broward County.

New York-based Drive Shack (NYSE: DS) is developing facilities across the country that will combine a technologically advanced driving range with a sports bar, restaurants, and games. Its first facility is under construction in Orlando, and it has another approved in West Palm Beach. Drive Shack is considered a competitor to Topgolf, which has one facility open in Miami-Dade County and a second one under construction there.

In Fort Lauderdale, Drive Shack is targeting the 10.29-acre site at 6499 N.W. 12th St., which is at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport. On Jan. 23, the City Commission will vote on a measure to start negotiations with Drive Shack for a lease on that parcel.

The city previously issued a solicitation for bidders concerning that property. There’s currently a proposal to rezone part of the area as “Uptown” with more entertainment uses and residential units, as it’s currently a large office district.

According to Drive Shack’s application, it would build a three-story facility of about 55,000 square feet. In addition to the driving range, it would feature a sports bar and restaurant, a gaming lounge, corporate meeting space, and a rooftop lounge.

Players would strike a ball into a 220-yard outfield. Camera technology would analyze players’ swings and trajectories and give them tips to hit the targets.

The facility would support about 350 full- and part-time jobs, according to the application. The development cost would range from $15 million to $25 million.

Drive Shack’s development team includes architect Populous, Kimley-Horn and Jon E. Schmidt & Associates.

In its proposal, Drive Shack offered to pay the city $310,000 a year for the first 10 years of the lease, and then $325,000 a year for the following 10 years. The final terms will be negotiated by the city and, of course, the project must obtain zoning and site plan approval.

Article: The South Florida Business Journal

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