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Date of Issue: May 11, 2006

Lucky 7 for Arvida/St. Joe on Perico

rosa del mar pic
Lucky seven for Perico
The "SevenShores" condominium project for Perico Island being developed by the St. Joe Co. opened its sales office May 2 at the east end of the Anna Maria Island Bridge. Islander Photo: Rick Catlin

Islanders wondering when the St. Joe Co. would begin selling units in its planned 686-unit Perico Island condominium project can stop guessing. The urbanization of Perico Island has begun and it now has a name.

The sales office for St. Joe’s newly named and controversial "SevenShores" condominium complex opened last week in a trailer at the east end of the Anna Maria Island Bridge.

Jerry Ray of St. Joe said that the opening of the sales office was part of the infrastructure needed by St. Joe before actual construction begins.

"SevenShores is being designed as a condominium community with panoramic vistas of Tampa Bay, Perico Bayou and the Gulf of Mexico" and adjacent waters, in addition to a 27-acre interior lake, Ray said.

He also confirmed St. Joe owns the Perico Harbor Marina, the former Leverock’s Restaurant and the existing gas/convenience store property, which will be utilized by SevenShores owners.

The company plans a "significant upgrade of the existing street frontage," along the Palma Sola Causeway he said, and will "create an aesthetically pleasing community entrance and provide future residents with marina access and other amenities." Prices will range from the low $700,000 to $1.5 million, Ray added, but he did not comment on when construction might begin.

St. Joe also plans to build a retail-office complex on the site where the marina, restaurant and convenience store are currently located.

The embattled St. Joe project has been ongoing for seven years, but has overcome numerous legal and political challenges, including two court cases.

The Bradenton City Council approved St. Joe’s site plan last year after Manatee County agreed to drop its objections to the project, but no construction or building permits have yet been issued.

When SevenShores is sold out, the 686 units would add approximately 1,680 residents to the Perico Island population.

The St. Joe Co., formerly known as Arvida, is the largest private landholder in Florida, with numerous single- and multi-family developments completed or in progress throughout the state.