© 2024 Central Florida Public Media. All Rights Reserved.
90.7 FM Orlando • 89.5 FM Ocala
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Orlando backs entertainment district near Kia Center with $40M tax break

Artist's rendering of the proposed Sports and Entertainment District in downtown Orlando.
SED Development LLC
City filings include this rendering of the proposed Sports and Entertainment District across West Church Street from the Kia Center in downtown Orlando.

The Orlando City Council approved a $40 million tax break today for an entertainment, hotel, residential and retail development next to the Kia Center.

The council also signed off on a plan for the first phase of the development plan and put $2.5 million toward it.

SED Development LLC, a company affiliated with the Orlando Magic, first got approval a decade ago for a slightly different plan.

At Monday's meeting, Mayor Buddy Dyer said: "[I]t's pretty exciting to get this mixed-use development going, and ensuring that we follow the work of turning our downtown into a true neighborhood."

The new, $500 million first phase includes a 261-room hotel, 273 residential units, a 65,000-square-foot event venue, an office tower, shops, restaurants and a parking garage.

All that -- and possibly, in years to come, two additional residential towers --are planned for 8.43 acres on the now-vacant block across West Church Street from the Kia Center.

Commissioner Jim Gray said he understands concerns over $40 million in tax revenue.

But, he said, "I think this project could be one of the more transformative projects that we've seen in a long time downtown."

In a recent post on social media, Democratic lawmaker Anna Eskamani criticized the tax break, citing a need to fund homeless services and shelters instead.

Joe Byrnes came to Central Florida Public Media from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.
Related Content