Commissioner Rita Pritchett’s Highlights
I am just finishing up my first year as your District 1 County Commissioner and I regularly find myself thankful for the trust you’ve placed in me. It has been a pleasure getting to work with this great community. This past year, I was blessed with the opportunity to serve as your 2017 Vice Chair. It’s an exciting day in District 1 and I would like to share this excitement with you.
Through the combined efforts of Eric Garvey (Tourist Development Director), Troy Post (North Brevard Economic Development Director), the Tourist Development Council, and I, we were able to secure $7 million for a multi-use sports arena in Titusville. The project will be located at 300 N. Washington Ave, Titusville, FL. This location was selected to transform a blighted area and turn it into a tourist destination. This project is in its early stages, but will be a public/private partnership. In addition to the arena, the initial plans include an onsite hotel.
I would like to introduce you to some new businesses in the District 1 community.
On July 11, 2017, I had the pleasure of attending the grand opening for RUAG Space. RUAG is using 23,800 square feet of the Titusville Logistics Center. RUAG is the leading supplier of products for the space industry in Europe, and has a growing presence in the United States. RUAG has partnered with OneWeb with the hopes of bringing low latency broadband to the four billion unconnected people around the world. RUAG has projected to bring up to 50 jobs to Brevard County in four to five years.
Oneweb is a satellite manufacturing company that is operating out of a 100,000-square-foot manufacturing and testing facility at Exploration Park. OneWeb expects to produce 900 satellites, which is planned for launch into low Earth orbit beginning in 2018. OneWeb hopes to deliver affordable Internet access globally. OneWeb is expected to bring 250 jobs with an average salary of $86,000. This is an $85 million capital investment.
- Blue Origin
An American privately funded aerospace manufacturer and spaceflight services company created by Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com. They are currently constructing a 750,000 square foot building, where they will build their rockets. In 2018, they are expecting to launch their first human flights. They will also bring 330 jobs with an average salary $89,000 to the Space Coast. This is around a $205 million capital investment by Blue Origin and the owner Jeff Bezos, CEO/Founder Amazon.com.
- Flying J Travel Center
August 30, 2017, I was able to attend the Flying J’s had grand opening event. The business is located on State Road 524, just off of Interstate 95 includes a Wendy's, Cinnabon and PJ Fresh. The Travel Center is expected to employ about 130 people. It has 14 fueling stations and eight diesel lanes with high-speed pumps for quicker refueling. The company says it is projected to contribute 3.9 million annually in state and local tax revenues.
My office received an update that Farmton has sent out the invitation for bids for construction of the westward extension of Deering Parkway. Construction is expected to start within the next 60 days.
- Titus Landing
The Titus Landing shopping center is located on a 30-acre site between U.S. 1 and Hopkins Avenue where the Miracle City Mall was once located. We are happy to welcome a few new businesses to the area and are excited to see them continue to exceed expectations. These business include
- The Mayo Clinic
- Wayback Burgers
- Hobby Lobby
- Dunkin Donuts
- Mike Erdman Toyota and Nissan Dealership
The dealership is a 35 acres site off I-95 in Cocoa. The construction is expected to be completed in early 2018. This expansion includes a 160,000 square foot of buildings, an investment of nearly $30 million in new construction, machinery and equipment. The expansion will create over 100 new jobs in Cocoa
- Wal-Mart distribution Center
The distribution center is located just east of I-95 in Cocoa. The 132-acre, $100 million project will feature a 460,000-square-foot distribution facility and refrigerated warehouse. The distribution center can be open as soon as next year.
- Beef O’Brady’s
There is a new Beef O’Brady’s coming to North Brevard. The restaurant will be located at the intersection of Fay Boulevard and Curtis Boulevard in Port St. John. It seat up to 163 people and will also include an outdoor patio. The patio will be able to accommodate up to 55 people.
With the addition of these new businesses, we are expecting over 1,000 new jobs in District 1.
Also coming to North Brevard are the bike trails! Through many collaborative efforts, North Brevard will serve as the convergence point for several paved bike trails to include a pedestrian bridge over Garden Street, a Visitors Welcome Center in Historic Downtown Titusville and a beautifully redevelopment storm water park at Draa Field. Trails that will pedal through North Brevard include: East Coast Regional Rail Trail, Coast to Coast Trail, St. Johns River to Sea Loop, Space Coast Loop Trail.
The East Central Regional Rail Trail is a series of bike and pedestrian paths including converted railroad tracks which have been abandoned for years. The trail will stretch 52 miles from Enterprise to Edgewater, in Volusia County, including a 10-mile leg to Titusville.
The Coast-to-Coast Trail is a 275 mile multipurpose trail that goes across our state linking Titusville with St. Petersburg.
The St. Johns River-to-Sea-Loop is nearly a 300 mile loop that follows the East Coast Greenway along Florida's Atlantic Coast and the St. Johns River corridor.
The Space Coast Loop Trail includes the Kennedy Space Center Loop Trail and the Florida East Central Regional Rail Trail. The Space Coast Loop is part of the St. John’s River to Sea Loop, which spans 300 miles across five counties and the Coast to Coast Trail that stretches across Florida from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico.
I want to again thank the community for the support you have shown me over the past year. Serving as your Commissioner has been a blessing. I’m looking forward to the upcoming year and the opportunity to watch North Brevard grow. If there is anything I can do, please do not hesitate to contact my office. Happy New year to you! Have a blessed day.