The Real Deal Miami

Robert Owens partnership buys Trump Tampa site for $5M

June 22, 2011 02:14PM

A partnership including developer Robert Owens has purchased the site of the Trump Tower Tampa, a failed waterfront condominium project that cut a branding deal with Donald Trump, and an adjacent six-story office building for $5 million, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Owens said he plans to bring a mixed-use retail, office and condominium complex to the site. Owens said the vacant lot alone was worth $10 million before the Trump project collapsed.

Trump licensed his name to the site’s Florida developer, Simdag/Robel, who sought bankruptcy protection in 2008. Dozens of buyers sued the developer seeking the return of their deposits. Some also took legal action against Trump, alleging he misled them into believing that he was the developer.

In the face of criticism, Trump has been adamant that most of his licensing deals have been successful and the Tampa project was simply the result of bad timing.

Owens is hoping for a better future for the site. “I think it’s important that we put a new face and identity on the building because it went through some challenges that we’re looking to move forward from,” he said. [WSJ]