BELLEAIR – After months of speculation, DeBartolo Development representatives will make a presentation to the Town Commission on Wednesday, Sept. 7, on what they have in mind for the Belleview Biltmore Resort and Spa.
“I got a call a week or so ago from Skipper Peek with DeBartolo,” said Town Manager Steve Cottrell. “He wanted to set up a time to meeting behind closed doors with the commissioners. I told him you can’t do that in the state of Florida.”
Cottrell advised Peek that a presentation could be made in a public forum at the Sept. 7 commission meeting, at which time attorney Nancy Stroud also is scheduled to present a draft of an historic preservation ordinance for the commission’s consideration.
Cottrell said Peek told him the DeBartolo group will “present an overview of their vision for the Belleview Biltmore hotel and other properties.” Cottrell added that Peek “implied that all of the hotel is not salvageable, but some of it may be.”
A demolition permit request filed in April by the hotel’s current owners, Urdang and Associates, was deemed by the town to be incomplete and not consistent with the town’s Comprehensive Plan.
In the meantime, other interested buyers have stepped up with their own plans for the hotel, which include either partial or complete preservation of the historic structure. The sticking point among plans discussed publicly has been the viability of preserving the hotel’s north/south wing.
Asked what he expects the DeBartolo plan to entail, Cottrell said, “I don’t have a clue what they will propose. I do think it’s about time.”
A flier being circulated in town by resident Rae Claire Johnson encourages residents to attend the Wednesday, Sept. 7, town commission meeting, which is set for 5:30 p.m. at Town Hall.
Also on the agenda for that meeting is the final reading of an ordinance establishing a Nov. 8 referendum on munipalization of power and discussion of the town budget for fiscal 2005-2006.