The Real Deal Miami

Fort Lauderdale developer closes on land near river

Development site last sold for $1.38M in 1994
By Katherine Kallergis | September 21, 2015 10:30AM

Jim Ellis, a map and rendering of the site in Fort Lauderdale

Jim Ellis, a map and rendering of the site in Fort Lauderdale

Ellis Diversified, a Fort Lauderdale-based developer and investment company, has closed on a development site near the New River, according to Broward County records.

ECDMG Interests, a limited partnership led by Evelyn G. Gross, sold the 1.5-acre property, a city block between Southwest Fourth Court and Southwest Fifth Street and between Southwest Flagler Avenue and Southwest First Avenue. An LLC led by EDI founder and president Jim Ellis paid $5 million for the site at 488 Southwest First Avenue.

The company is working on submitting plans to the city, which include 380 residential units, retail and a freestanding parking garage, Ellis told The Real Deal.

“It’s a fabulous site. It’s right on the riverwalk, as much in the central business district as you can be,” he told TRD.

The developer works on apartments, retail and townhouses in South Florida, including Sunset Harbor apartments, 350 Las Olas Place condos, and the Enclave at Victoria Park townhomes, all in Fort Lauderdale. In August, Ellis, a former Blockbuster video store executive, sold 2.2 acres of vacant land to Lennar for $12.5 million.

The land last sold for $1.38 million in 1994, property records show. It’s near the Broward County Clerk of Courts, NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale and the Broward Center for the Performing Arts.