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Jax Daily Record Tuesday, Aug. 3, 202102:49 PM EST

River City Brewing Co.’s leasehold sells for $10 million

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Miami-based developer The Related Group plans to build a 327-unit apartment at the Southbank site.
by: Mike Mendenhall Associate Editor

Miami-based developer The Related Group purchased River City Brewing Co.’s leasehold for its Downtown Southbank restaurant site for $10 million, CBRE announced Aug. 3. 

CBRE  Senior Vice President Cliff Taylor and First Vice President Joe Ayers facilitated the sale between Related and River City parent company Maritime Concepts L.C.

River City co-owners Anthony Candelino and Eugene Van Note said July 15 that Maritime planned to close Aug. 2 on its financial deal with Related. 

The riverfront restaurant closed July 18. Related plans an eight-story, 327-unit apartment with an attached garage and a free-standing restaurant at the site. 

The developer bought Maritime’s remaining 76 years of a 99-year land lease with the city and assumes ownership of the 3.34-acre parcel at 835 Museum Circle.

“To have a developer the caliber of Related in Jacksonville is a testament to the dynamic growth occurring in our city,” Taylor said in a news release. “This new development is well-positioned to benefit from Jacksonville’s explosion of growth that has only been heightened in the post-COVID age.”

The River City Brewing Co. restaurant closed July 18.

The estimated $99.16 million Southbank development, named RD River City Brewery apartments, is Related’s first in Jacksonville. 

“With staggering in-migration numbers and strong job growth, the city needs top-tier, quality development in the urban core that will create a sense of place and drive traffic to area businesses,” Taylor said.

In the release, CBRE praised the Downtown Investment Authority and its CEO Lori Boyer for negotiating the city’s redevelopment agreement with Related for the apartment project.

A filing with the state Division of Corporations shows that Van Note, of Cranford, New Jersey, is Maritime’s co-managing partner with Joel Greenfield of Bridgehampton, New York.

The property has been home to restaurants for decades. 

It housed the Lobster House restaurant for nearly 50 years before it was destroyed by fire in 1962. It was the backdrop for some scenes in the 1954 film “Creature from the Black Lagoon.”

In the 1970s, Diamondhead restaurant and then Someplace Else disco club operated there. That structure was demolished and replaced by Harbormasters. 

That restaurant was renamed River City Brewing Co. in November 1994 after Van Note and his then-business partners took over the venue.

Van Note brought Candelino to River City in July 1996 as vice president and restaurant manager.

River City auctioned the restaurant’s fixtures, equipment and nautical memorabilia July 25, according to Candelino. 

Related Group Vice President of Development Jeff Robbins said in June he anticipates groundbreaking for the apartments by the end of 2021.

Related was founded in 1979 by Chairman and CEO Jorge M. Perez. The development company’s focus is Southeast Florida with an emphasis on luxury high-rise condominiums. 

The company lost a bid in February 2020 to redevelop the former Jacksonville City Hall and Duval County Courthouse site on the Downtown Northbank, now called The Ford on Bay.

Related announced in June it plans to build Azure, a 26-unit oceanfront condominium in Jacksonville Beach. Robbins said the units will sell for $1.5 million to $6.5 million.

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