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The Villages
Sunday, October 2, 2022

District government to rent office space over City Fire from the Developer

The Villages District government has inked a deal to rent office space from the Developer over the City Fire restaurant at Lake Sumter Landing.

The second-floor office space has been occupied by The Villages Technology Solutions Group, which last year secured a $5.8 million no-bid technology services agreement with Sumter County. Technology Solutions Group is moving to a brand new office building at Brownwood.

The opening has prompted the District government to ink a five-year lease agreement with The Villages Operating Co. for the upstairs office space above the popular restaurant which features an outdoor patio and bar.

City FIre at Lake Sumter Landing
City Fire at Lake Sumter Landing

Currently, the government offices for Administration, Recreation & Parks, Customer Service, Community Standards, Office of Management and Budget, Purchasing, Risk Management, Clerk, Human Resources, Finance and District Property Management are located in the upstairs office space above Starbucks, across from Thai Ruby and in the Coggins Building, near the area where The Villages trolleys are regularly parked.

In 2014, when the 984 Old Mill Run and 1071 Canal Street office locations were acquired, the District contemplated that build-out of the community was approaching, which was at the forefront of decision-making for office space and staffing-levels,” District Manager Richard Baier said in a memo to the Village Center Community Development District Board of Supervisors.

“As you are aware, the community continued expansion south of S.R. 44, creating additional opportunities for office space and staffing to meet the needs of the community. As a result, in 2017 the District leased office space in the Coggins Building at 940 Lake Shore Drive to accommodate the Office of Management and Budget and Purchasing departments,” he wrote.

The two District departments that are slated to move to the office space above City Fire are District Property Management and Executive Golf Maintenance. They will gain nearly 1,000 square feet in comparison to their existing space. The Office of Management and Budget, Purchasing and Risk Management staff members will relocate to the 1071 Canal St. location, “providing additional space and ease of access” to the vast majority of District departments, Baier said.

The District will terminate its lease for the office space at 940 Lake Shore Drive, near where the trolleys are parked.

Beginning in October, the District will pay $9,694.67 per month for base rent for the office space above City Fire. There is also a monthly charge of $5,663.16 for air conditioning reimbursement, elevator use and trash pickup.

Kelly Flores
Kelly Flores

The lease agreement was approved by the VCCDD board, which is chaired by Kelly Flores, director of program management for Technology Solutions Group, the outgoing tenant.

You can read the lease agreement at this link: 1026_Canal_Street_Lease_Agreement

The new office space agreement with the District government, which is funded by residents, comes at a time when the Developer is hoping to locate apartments on the second floor space at Spanish Springs Town Square and Lake Sumter Landing. Representatives for the Developer have claimed it has become too difficult to lure tenants to the second floor spaces at the square. The Villages is suing the Town of Lady Lake after a 3-2 vote blocking a plan for apartments at Spanish Springs Town Square.

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