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Jeff Barnes

Long Vacant Properties to Get a New Lease on Life


Three long vacant commercial properties in Oakland Park are getting the chance to be repurposed and put back into service for the community. Three Neighborhood Participation Meetings were recently held to unveil plans for redevelopment of the properties. Three different developers/property owners have big plans to replace the empty commercial spaces with new vibrant businesses.

4055 North Andrews Avenue (Future Pax Villa Funeral Home)

Located just south of Prospect Road on the West side North Andrews Avenue, this long empty building has sat unused for a dozen years. That will soon change as the owners of Pax Villa Funeral Home plan to remodel the building and utilize it as a new full-service Funeral Home.

The exterior of the building will be extensively cleaned up, new landscaping and parking lot improvements will be completed to give the building a fresh new appearance. Small architectural changes to enhance the exterior of building will be completed. Inside the building will be extensively remodeled and updated to provide a beautiful and intimate space for funeral services.

1299 East Oakland Park Blvd (Future Oakland Park Commons)

Most Oakland Park residents are very familiar with the windowless grey building on East Oakland Park Blvd across from Peter Pan Diner. The large plain building has sat empty for over a decade and a few redevelopment plans have been proposed over the years, but none came to fruition. Now a new plan by the owners of the property is to convert the unused building into an exciting new mixed-use development, Oakland Park Commons.

Utilizing the existing building with no change to its current footprint, the interior of the building will be extensively remodeled into a vibrant coworking space, residential apartments and some possible ground level retail space.

The owners have contracted with Austin Fox Architecture, a Broward County firm, to redesign the interior spaces and give the exterior a much needed make over. The 50,000 SF building was built in 1975 and is zoned for RM-16 Medium Family Residential, Boulevard Commercial in the city’s CRA district, at entrance to the Oakland Park Downtown Development District (OP3D).

The first floor of the building already contains a covered parking garage and soon to be coworking office space. The second floor will also be coworking space and remodeled and updated apartments. The third floor will be exclusively apartments. The apartments will be of average size suitable for individuals or families looking for practical and reasonably priced urban living.

The coworking spaces will have private office suites that will cater to small businesses, freelancers and those seeking convenient office space close to home.
The owners want the redevelopment to serve as a practical solution to housing and workspace needs in the Oakland Park downtown area.

Ghost Kitchen 3569-3579 North Dixie Highway

What is a Ghost Kitchen? A Ghost Kitchen is essentially a restaurant without the dining space. Their focus is to sell and fulfill online food orders for delivery using third party apps like Grubhub, UberEATS and Door Dash, or they may have their own delivery operation.

The developers of Ghost Kitchen in Oakland Park are taking that basic concept and putting the Oakland Park spin on it to create not only a space for 16 independent kitchens to operate, but also adding some indoor seating and a beautiful outdoor patio space for residents to come to and enjoy.

Situated on the West side of North Dixie Highway at the corner of NE 36th Street, the long vacant warehouse was recently sold, and major structural improvements have been made including hurricane proof windows and doors, exterior façade improvements, updated exterior lighting and interior infrastructure.

The goal of Ghost Kitchen is to empower independent, highly skilled chefs to foster opportunities to build out innovative new restaurant businesses where they otherwise may not have been able to.

The owners hope to complete the project and be open for business by May of 2024. By the looks of the artist renderings this will be a monumental addition to the West side of North Dixie Highway.

All three projects will continue through the appropriate city development processes as required. Oakland Park is certainly fulfilling its “City on the Move” slogan.


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