PLANT CITY The city has signed a $48,000 contract with an engineering consultant that will help find a developer for redevelopment of the 85-acre Midtown area.
GAI Consultants, based in Orlando, has more than 55 years of experience in consulting and has offices in 10 states, City Manager Mike Herr said. He said GIA’s Thomas Kohler, who will work with the city, “is considered a leading authority on community redevelopment planning.” Midtown is a largely commercial area just south of downtown that the city wants redeveloped with homes and small shops. The city has purchased and razed a number of businesses in the area to clear the way for the project.
Among other tasks, GAI will help the city solicit proposals from developers, and evaluate those proposals and help in negotiations, Herr said.
Herr said Kohler, who is GAI’s senior director of Economic and Real Estate Advisory Services, has a long history of redevelopment projects, including in downtown Orlando, Crystal River and Fort Lauderdale. He is past chairman of the Florida Downtown Development Association and served then Gov. Bob Martinez’ task force on urban growth in 1988-89.