Boca City Council approves sale of municipal golf course for $65M

Multiple developers vied for right to buy the land, one of the last big developable sites in the Boca market

Boca Raton Municipal Golf Course
Boca Raton Municipal Golf Course

The Boca Raton City Council approved the $65 million sale of the Boca Raton Municipal Golf Course West to GL Homes during a meeting Tuesday night.

The homebuilder, which wants to build 580 single-family homes on the 188-acre development site, won a long public bidding process with Lennar Homes and others for one of the last developable sites of its size in Palm Beach County. The property at 8111 Golf Course Road is by Glades Road west of the Florida Turnpike, with some frontage on the turnpike.

The council voted 4-to-1 to approve the ordinance making the sale possible, with councilman Jeremy Rodgers voting against it.

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Although GL Homes has already completed some of its due diligence, there has not, as yet, been an environmental assessment on the property, Neil Schiller, attorney for the developer with Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr, told The Real Deal. “GL Homes is willing to clean up the contamination on the site,” he said.

The next step for GL Homes is to seek Palm Beach County approval, because the land, although owned by the city of Boca Raton, is within the county. The city has been looking at selling the property for the last few years, Schiller said.

The developer will be seeking a land-use plan amendment, rezoning and site plan approval from the county, a process that can take up to 16 months, he said. GL Homes’ planners are working on a plan now to determine the layout for the development and the exact number of homes that it will build.

Although GL Homes is paying $65 million for the site, the original offer was for $73 million. The lower offer stemmed from a realization that not all of the land was usable. Deed restrictions on the property prevent GL Homes from building on 15 or 16 acres, Schiller said. The cost of cleaning up the contamination left by the golf course is also expected to be costly.