Retail is one step closer for Villagers living south of State Road 44.
A commercial building permit has been approved for Magnolia Plaza, to take shape on Warm Springs Avenue and Marsh Bend Trail in the Village of Marsh Bend. The only hurdle left for that permit is a review by the State Fire Marshal.
Magnolia Plaza promises to bring shopping and dining to the retail-starved residents of Fenney, McClure, DeSoto, Marsh Bend and Linden.
The 24-acre complex will offer the first golf-cart accessible shopping for Villagers who have taken the plunge and bought homes south of State Road 44.
The good news for those residents is that Publix has signed a lease to anchor the shopping complex.
The first restaurant to be located at Magnolia Plaza will be Willie Jewell’s Old School Bar-B-Q. The first Willie Jewell’s was founded in 2009 in Charleston, S.C. But the restaurant’s roots date back to 1949 when it was originally founded as Bono’s in Jacksonville. Willie Jewell’s boasts a 70-year tradition of slow-cooked pit barbecue.
Other retailers coming to Magnolia Plaza include The Villages Golf Cars, Salon Jaylee and Safe Ship package and shipping. There will also be a Citizens First Bank branch.
A series of bridges have yet to be completed connecting Villagers south of State Road 44 with the rest of Florida’s Friendliest Hometown. For now, Villagers there are dining at the Fenney Grill or food trucks at the Cattail Recreation Center in the Village of Marsh Bend. One of those food truck operators was warned last year by a health inspector over hygiene violations.