Sarasota County Commission Approves Mote SEA Land Agreement
February 8, 2019 02:02 PM
Shutts & Bowen’s Sarasota team, including John Patterson, Meredith Delcamp and Zach Rans, recently represented Mote Marine Laboratory in reaching definitive agreements with Sarasota County for a planned new world class aquarium to be built on land now owned by the county. The project is estimated to cost $130 million.
On January 30, the Sarasota County Commission unanimously approved an Omnibus Agreement for the use of county-owned land in Nathan Benderson Park for the site of the Mote Science Education Aquarium (Mote SEA). Mote SEA will be an educational and outreach hub that aims to vastly improves access to marine science and technology for residents and visitors, an iconic facility with 110,000 square feet containing more than 1 million gallons of exhibits, onsite diving programs, a STEM resource center for students, teachers and the general public, two STEM workforce training labs and three K-12 STEM teaching labs, which will offer no-cost opportunities for every school in the region.
The Omnibus Agreement includes a two-year lease, during which Mote will pursue normal, due-diligence steps and seek zoning approval for ultimate sale of the land. If this does not happen within the short-term lease, the agreement calls for a long-term lease of up to 90 years.
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