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ST. THOMAS - Developer Alfredo Lowenstein has purchased 17 acres of East End land near Vessup Beach and Muller Bay for $3 million.
But Lowenstein's plans to build homes and condominiums on the land may not become reality. The V.I. government has earmarked $3 million to buy the land by eminent domain.
"Now we'll have to wait to see what happens with the government," Lowenstein said Tuesday.
One property was added to the Multiple Listing Service in the last week, none came off. The lone addition, priced at $950,000, is in estate Hard Labor. Built in 1987, the residence has 4-bedrooms and 3-baths; no pool, increasing the inventory of listed available homes to 35.
ST. THOMAS - Despite concerns over landscaping that have delayed the $16 million Long Bay Road expansion project, the V.I. Public Works Department plans to begin the long-awaited work by the end of the year.
Keith Richards, assistant to the governor for capital projects, told the Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday that in order to avoid an appeal of the Coastal Zone Management Committee's permit approval for the work, which Richards said could have tied up the project for years, the V.I. government has agreed to revise some of its plans.
The project - which intends to ease the traffic congestion that clogs Mandela Circle, Wilmot Blyden Road, Centerline Road and Frenchman's Bay Road - received CZM approval in March.
ST. THOMAS - Senators mustered just enough votes Tuesday to override Gov. Charles Turnbull's veto of legislation that appropriates $3 million to buy 17 acres of East End land near Vessup Beach to protect it from development.
The V.I. government now will move to acquire the land by eminent domain - much to the dismay of developer Alfredo Lowenstein, who is set to close on the property next week. Lowenstein's plans for the area include a 50-room hotel, 130 condominium units, his own private residence, redevelopment of the Vessup Beach marina and a restaurant.
And the government may not be able to stop him.
To acquire land by eminent domain, the government must pay fair market value and must use the land for parks, public recreation areas or preserves. The bill sets aside only $3 million. Lowenstein says the property is worth as much as $18 million.
ST. THOMAS - Miami developer Alfredo Lowenstein has closed on 26 acres of undeveloped land on Cabrita Point in a deal worth approximately $9 million.
Lowenstein has partnered with The Ritz-Carlton to build three more of the hotel's luxury timeshare buildings on a 10-acre tract beginning at the entrance to the East End peninsula. Four Ritz-Carlton Club timeshare buildings currently are adjacent to the hotel.
The developer also plans to build high-end residential homes on the remaining 16 acres, which span dozens of undeveloped lots on Cabrita Point.
"Basically, he bought most of the open land left on Cabrita," said Michael Lampe, a real estate broker who handled the 26-acre purchase for Lowenstein.
Check out this week's report from Frank:
"The folks behind the attempted house auction sale last weekend have decided to try the traditional route. The 30-year-old 3-bedroom, 2-bath Enighed home (view is pictured) was added to the Multiple Listing Service at a price of $989,000, almost $40K more than the minimum bid price of $950,000. The owners received no acceptable offers with their auction effort. Also new to the MLS is Ebb Tide, a 3-bedroom/3-bath older home on the water at Chocolate Hole. Asking price is $2,999,000."
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