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Magic begin work on entertainment complex

July 12,2016 06:31

The property will be redeveloped by the Orlando Magic into a sprawling, $200 million entertainment complex. Restaurants, nightclubs, retail shops, a hotel and open breezeways will be filled with pre- and post-game basketball fans, concert attendees and ...and more »


The sounds of concrete crumbling and rebar snapping under the pressure from an excavator could be heard early Monday morning. Crews with Balfour Beatty construction spent the first day razing the two garage buildings on the north side of Orlando’s Church Street, facing the Amway Center.  The garages are the first structures on the nearly eight-acre block, bordered by Church Street, Hughey Avenue, Division Avenue and Central Boulevard, to be torn down.The garage demolition should take until mid to late September. The property will be redeveloped by the Orlando Magic into a sprawling, $200 million entertainment complex. Restaurants, nightclubs, retail shops, a hotel and open breezeways will be filled with pre- and post-game basketball fans, concert attendees and locals who want to enjoy a wide variety of entertainment without walking all over town. >>Download the WESH 2 News app for iOS and AndroidDowntown patrons and workers, who talked with WESH 2 News, are eager for it to open. “Yeah, I think it's good. If you ever go to any other major city, they all have that right in front of their arenas," said local resident, Chris West."It'll be great for, like, concerts, the venue and events, and a hotel right there, definitely," said resident Jeanette Potter.Michael Molter works across the street from the project at TravelClick. “It's definitely going to be big to have outdoor entertainment year-round. It's going to attract more events, and it's going to be really good," Molter said.To help clear space for the project, the existing police headquarters will be torn down after police move into a new HQ on south Orange Blossom Trail at South Street, possibly as soon as November.“Well, all the pieces seem to be coming together,” Orlando Mayor, Buddy Dyer, told WESH 2 News.  “We'll be finished with the new police headquarters by the end of the year. So we're very excited about them (the Orlando Magic) moving forward with the project.”The only possible snag in the Magic's plans:  a pending legal challenge to the city of Orlando's Municipal Planning Board decision to approve the re-location of the Orlando Union Rescue Mission from its location for the last 68 years on the northwest corner of the property, at Division Avenue and Central Boulevard.The Rescue Mission Board wants to buy property on Anderson Street near Terry Avenue and build a new men's shelter. But the Magic said they can build the entertainment complex around the rescue mission, if necessary.A Magic spokesman said a timetable for construction groundbreaking and completion is still being worked out.As part of Orlando's commitment to being a "green" city, residents will see the cement, concrete, metal and other materials, all of that is going to be recycled and used in the construction of the new entertainment complex. 

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