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Fort Lauderdale City Commissioners Approve Plans for The ELAD,
a 256-room Hotel with 41 Condos

By Brittany Wallman, Sun Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.McClatchy-Tribune Regional News

Nov. 5, 2008 - FORT LAUDERDALE -- A 19-story hotel with condos got the go-ahead Tuesday night to replace a vacant parking lot on a Fort Lauderdale beach back street.

Fort Lauderdale city commissioners voted 4-1 Tuesday night, Vice Mayor Charlotte Rodstrom dissenting, to approve ELAD, a 256-room hotel with 41 residential condos on the top floors, and 8,000 square feet of restaurants on the bottom.

ELAD will rise on property bounded to the east and west by Almond Avenue and Seabreeze Boulevard. To the north and south are Poinsettia and Banyan streets. It's a block in from the oceanfront properties, and a block north of Las Olas Boulevard.

"It's a mess back there," beach redevelopment advocate Ina Lee told commissioners of the beach's back streets. Lee said that as a vacant parking lot the property at 2939 Banyan St. contributes about $24,000 in tax dollars to the city's Community Redevelopment Agency taxing district, but she estimates it would skyrocket to a $1 million property tax offering if developed as a tower.The ELAD won support from some at the beach, but it was not unanimous.

Joe Hessman, a 52-year beach resident, said he opposed the ELAD. He said he was concerned about plans to dig underground parking, where the water table is high.

"I say it's a disaster waiting to happen," Hessman said.

But Robert Lochrie, attorney for the EL-AD FL BEACH LLC, assured commissioners the construction methods were sound, including plans to remove water from the ground under the site.

Brittany Wallman can be reached at bwallman@sunsentinel.com or 954-356-4541.

More action Other Fort Lauderdale City Commission decisions. Page 9

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Copyright (c) 2008, Sun Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

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