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Stock Development has taken a big step toward the development of its controversial One Naples luxury condo project. Vonna Keomanyvong/Naples Daily News

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Stock Development has taken a big step toward the development of its controversial One Naples luxury condo project.

The developer has purchased 3.55 acres of rare waterfront property in North Naples for $19.7 million.

At the northeast corner of Vanderbilt Beach Road and Gulf Shore Drive, the property is part of the area where the Naples-based developer plans to build a mixed-use project that will include an 18-story luxury tower with 300 residences.

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Colliers International Southwest Florida brokered the transaction. The offering was one of a few remaining waterfront properties primed for redevelopment in the Naples area.

The property consists of vacant land, a marina, apartments, condos and commercial land. It's about half of the roughly 7 acres Stock Development is looking to build its project on.

Made up of 18 parcels, the offering hit the market about two years ago, but it has been under contract for about 1½ years, said Jim Garinger, a senior managing director for Colliers International. 

The brokers created a competitive call-for-offers scenario, designed to maximize the sale amount for its former owners, Vanderbilt Real Estate Holdings Ltd., an affiliate of the Cafesjian Family Foundation, a nonprofit based in Minnesota.

“The Colliers International team exceeded our expectations not only by driving the contract negotiations, but also managing the entire sales process and securing a highly favorable result,” said Kathleen Baradaran, president of Vanderbilt Real Estate Holdings, in a statement.

Although the property generated multiple offers, Colliers International chose Stock Development as the preferred buyer for multiple reasons, not just based on its offering price, Garinger said. 

"Other than just the best price, there was experience in the community," he said. "There was the financial ability to close. There was previous experience with the team, and the ultimate buyer has a great track record in Collier County and Southwest Florida with projects like this." 

Stock Development has built single-family luxury homes in residential communities throughout Southwest Florida and recently started developing multifamily and retail properties.

One Naples is a mostly residential project. It will also include units offered in low and midrise buildings of up to five stories. There will be a marina and retail shops.

In May the developer held a public meeting about the project at The Ritz-Carlton beach hotel in North Naples before making a formal application to the county for approval. Stock Development sent out 4,500 invitations to residents. The unveiling brought mixed reactions, from excitement to despair.

The project will require a rezoning and growth plan amendment. 

The current zoning of C-3 allows for much more intensive development, far beyond what's on the site, comparable to a Mercato or Venetian Village.

It would be a redevelopment project, replacing several buildings, most of which are more than 30 years old. It threatens to close some of the existing businesses. 

Buzz Victor, a North Naples resident and commercial developer, said he was surprised to hear about the sales of the property.

Often the closing of a property will be contingent on a rezoning, especially when the land is such a big investment.

To Victor, it signals that Stock Development must be confident that it will win all the regulatory approvals it needs to build the project, though he expects there will be significant opposition from people like him and from homeowners groups because it's so intense.

"This is just going to fill up every square inch," he said. "It would be far and away the largest structure north of Vanderbilt Beach Road and south of Bluebill. In this whole Vanderbilt Beach area there is just nothing like this, and there shouldn't be. It's not that kind of area." 

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