UPDATED, Oct. 31, 5:45 p.m: Leo Pustilnikov, a real estate investor, has emerged as the buyer of the contentious AES Power Plant site, closing the book on a years-long process.
Acting through an LLC named Next Century Power, Pustilnikov acquired two lots on the property, located on the ocean side of Harbor Drive, Easy Reader News reported.
He is in the process of acquiring the entire 51-acre property, a process that could take as long as nine months. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Late last year, city officials announced a plan to shutter the power plant and redevelop the property into a public park with recreational facilities. At the time, the city and county said they were seeking a private developer to partner with on the project.
Pustilnikov first bid on the site two years ago.
Though his plans are still being finalized, any redevelopment would be subject to a public vote given the current zoning. Nearly six acres of the property are also protected as wetlands.
The property has been the subject of much controversy in the South Bay. Plans to redevelop the site emerged as early as 2001, when a mixed-use project called “Heart of the City” was proposed. Then, in 2015, residents voted against closing the power plant because it would have allowed a 600-unit residential project to be built in its place.
Pustilnikov is a principal at SLH Investments. [ERN] — Natalie Hoberman