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Date of Issue: July 05, 2007

Plans proposed for former Trader Jack's property

Another proposal has been presented for the vacant property that once held a popular restaurant and bar — Trader Jack’s — popular in the 1950s-80s in Bradenton Beach.

Architect Mike McCaleb has presented plans to the city for development of the Gulffront site in the 800-900 blocks of Gulf Drive, located adjacent to the Gulf Drive Cafe. Both are owned by the Kokolis family.

The plans call for rezoning of the property from its current commercial zoning to residential to allow for condominiums on the Gulf side of Gulf Drive, plus additional condo units on the east side of the 1.5-acre property.

Amenities to the property, as McCaleb has proposed, include 61 additional parking spaces to reach a total of 101; sidewalks; a multi-use “chickee” for special events; boardwalks which would meet the Americans with Disabilities Act requirements; fountains for children; and semi-public rest rooms.

There also is proposed a dedicated beach access leading to the “Regina” shipwreck, named a Florida historic landmark, just off the shore.

This proposal will require board of adjustment approval for setbacks, plus planning and zoning board approval for the rezoning and final approval by the city commission. No dates for the meetings by the various committees has been set.

Trader Jack’s changed hands, was damaged extensively by a storm and later burned. The Kokolis’ purchased the property in 1987 from the state of Vermont, which had taken ownership .