Florida Keys News - Islamorada/KL Free Press
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
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Affordable housing work set to begin

ISLAMORADA -- Construction of the long-awaited affordable housing community at the village-owned WetNet site should begin either this week or next, said Hana Eskra of developer Gorman Co.

"We're pretty excited about it," Eskra said last week.

Gorman closed the last of its financing deals on the 36-unit rental community on Nov. 27.

The project, tentatively called WetNet Villas, should be completed within a year, Eskra added.

"Once we got the funding the village has actually be terrific to work with," she said.

The village acquired the 4-acre WetNet site at mile marker 81.5 in 2006. But the site sat vacant for years due to lawsuits and general inaction until talks began with Gorman last year.

Michael Swerdlow, a resident of the nearby Coral Cove neighborhood who was one of the litigants in the previous lawsuits, had threatened a suit to block this project.

Gorman and Swerdlow haven't come to a formal agreement. But Eskra said Swerdlow may have been assuaged because Gorman is using a site plan he originally had drawn up.

"We have been sure to work closely with their architect," she said of the Siskind Carlson Partners firm in Miami.

rsilk@keysnews.com

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