Demolition of Winter Garden eyesore begins



WINTER GARDEN, Fla. - Winter Garden residents will need to get used to the sound of construction in downtown.

The city started demolition on a vacant and rundown apartment complex to expand its downtown area that will house a craft brewery and other businesses.

"It's basically cleaning up the area, which we love because it helps everyone who lives here," nearby resident Shauna Clemons said.

By noon, crews had nearly two apartment units demolished, but they still have a lot of work to go.

"It got really cool when they started taking down from the outside," resident Nicholas Lavdas said.

But it's what will soon move in that has residents even more excited about the change to the downtown landscape.

The building's owner already has big plans for he property and so do the potential tenants who are lining up to move in.

Co-owner of the property, Jared Czachorowski, said, "We've got about 25 spaces and half of those places, people already have intents to lease-sign, so, we're working on the rest."

In addition to the new businesses, the city has its eye on two locations for the first downtown parking garage.

Officials said another developer is interested in extended downtown at the opposite end of where demolition started Monday.

"On a weekly basis it seems like we're having to turn away two to three companies because we don't have space downtown, and downtown is the prime space where everyones wants to come and right now there's limited office space available," said Winter Garden City manager Mike Bollhoefer.

Once everything is taken down, the building owner said the first business should open by St. Patrick's Day.