Jungle Island to pay off $15 million loan in exchange for extra land, new lease

To stave off a default on its $15 million loan, the city of Miami is offering the financially troubled Jungle Island amusement park a new 99-year lease and additional land on Watson Island aimed at making the attraction more appealing to potential investors, the Miami New Times reported. Voters will have to weigh in on the decision with a public vote on the deal scheduled for November.

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The city’s offer, which must be agreed to by 9 a.m. on Thursday, requires Jungle Island to pay back its $15 million loan plus $2 million to the HUD. The park has not been able to determine where the additional $2 million will come from, although the funding will likely have to be obtained from an outside investor, according to Bern Levine, the park’s owner. If the deals falls through and Jungle Island defaults, the city will become responsible for 80 percent of the loan. [Miami New Times]