Developer Art Falcone won a key approval for a seven-story, 285-unit apartment project with ground-floor retail space on Federal Highway in Pompano Beach.
The city commission voted unanimously on Tuesday to allocate 285 “flex” residential units to the 6.2-acre development site at 3151-3251 Federal Highway. The commission can allocate such units to increase residential development on a site without rezoning it.
Falcone, co-founder and chief investment officer of Boca Raton-based Encore Capital Management, put the development site on Federal Highway under contract about a year and a half ago, and started planning to develop a multifamily project, his attorney Matthew Scott said at the commission meeting. The Chicago-based owner of the site is 1307 South Wabash LLC.
The site has a commercial land use designation and B-3 zoning, which enabled commissioners to allocate 285 “flex” residential units to Falcone’s development site. The commission’s action reduced the citywide number of flex units remaining to be allocated to 290.
About five years ago, Walmart put the Pompano Beach property under contract and obtained site plan approval to build a store. But the retailer encountered fierce opposition from local residents and dropped its plans for a new store, Scott said.
The apartments will be offered at market rate rents. Falcone plans to pay a fee to the city in lieu of offering some of the apartments at affordable, below-market rates.
Falcone applied for the allocation of flex residential units earlier this year and submitted a conceptual site plan, which underwent considerable revision, Scott said.
Miami-based MSA Architects designed the multifamily development with four seven-story buildings and two four-story buildings. The shorter buildings, a pool and a dog park are on the west side of the site, next to a neighborhood of single-family homes called Crestwood. The site plan also shows two retail structures with a total of 4,356 square feet on the east side of the site, along Federal Highway.
MSA also redesigned the exterior of the development’s parking garage to resemble the residential façade of the apartment complex, which drew compliments from several commissioners.
“Your parking garage is fantastic,” Vice Mayor Rhonda Eaton told the development team at the commission meeting. “You have been very thoughtful in redesigning this.”
“We love it in Pompano when parking garages don’t look like parking garages,” said Mayor Rex Hardin.
The development site had a notorious reputation from when a nightclub called Club Cinema operated there. In 2014, local news media reported that Broward County Sheriff’s deputies closed the nightclub for serving alcohol after 2 a.m. On the nightclub’s Facebook page, photos of the site show demolition crews razing the old Club Cinema building in August of last year.