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Scientology bids for construction in Clearwater as church seeks to tighten grip on Florida real estate

The Church of Scientology has proposed construction in Clearwater as it seeks to tighten its grip on commercial real estate in Florida, it has been revealed.

The church, which already owned 58 properties in Clearwater until 2019, was opened after bidding by city officials to bid on a project to develop three city-owned parcels of inundated land. Was one of five developers, according to Document Released on Tuesday after closing of the bid on Monday.

Other developers bidding are City Center Development LLC, Elevate Clearwater, Office America Group and SROA Capital.



The revelation comes as the Church of Scientology works to purchase commercial real estate in Clearwater, Florida – where the church is headquartered.

The document does not explain what the church intends to build in downtown Clearwater – where it already owns 49 other properties Tampa bay times Reported in 2019.

Since arriving in Pinellas County in 1975, the church has already stripped at least 60 properties nationwide with 58 of its names in the city of Clearwater, the outlet reported.

Officials in Clearwater, Florida announced that it was seeking bids for the city’s three waterfront properties in January

On Tuesday, it was revealed in a public document that the Church of Scientology had bid to develop the properties.

On Tuesday, it was revealed in a public document that the Church of Scientology had bid to develop the properties.

Officials in Clearwater, Florida announced that it was seeking bids for the city's three waterfront properties in January

Officials in Clearwater, Florida announced that it was seeking bids for the city’s three waterfront properties in January

The three lots include a 2.6-acre vacant city hall on Pierce Street and a 1.2-acre tract in the neighborhood that is also vacant, remaining, as well as the 1.4-acre site where the Harborview Center demolished in February 2019 Was sitting before it happened.

The three lots include a 2.6-acre vacant city hall on Pierce Street and a 1.2-acre tract in the neighborhood that is also vacant, remaining, as well as the 1.4-acre site where the Harborview Center demolished in February 2019 Was sitting before it happened.

A map shows property owned by the Church of Scientology in 2019 in the clear waters of the city

A map shows property owned by the Church of Scientology in 2019 in the clear waters of the city

Of the church’s properties, about 72% of them are tax-free for religious purposes, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

City Council member Hoyt Hamilton said in 2019 that there is a logical conclusion that Scientology needs to have a rough game plan in mind, but they are not public about it.

‘Typically, when people buy commercial real estate, they move forward with construction or redevelopment. This is not happening with almost any property. ‘

Other companies along with Scientology allegedly purchased 100 commercial properties between 2017 and 2019 within walking distance of the downtown waterfront.

“The church has acquired more than 70 buildings in major population centers around the world since 2004,” the church said. Website.

‘The combined size of the church complex increased from about 5.6 million sq ft in 2004 to 12.1 million sq ft in 2010.’

Of the church the headquarters In Clearwater, called the Flag Building, is a massive seven-story, 377,000-square-foot complex that opened in November 2013 when it was the tallest building in the city. It is also known as the Super Powers Building.

The Church of Scientology Flag Building, the focal point of a construction campaign for the church, is seen on May 22, 2008 in Clearwater, Florida.

The Church of Scientology Flag Building, the focal point of a construction campaign for the church, is seen on May 22, 2008, in Clearwater, Florida.

People arrived on November 16, 2013 in Clearwater, Florida, to celebrate the opening of the new Scientology Flag Building. Construction of the 377,000-square-foot center began in 1999 and cost more than $ 40 million to complete.

People arrived on November 16, 2013 in Clearwater, Florida, to celebrate the opening of the new Scientology Flag Building. Construction of the 377,000-square-foot center began in 1999 and cost more than $ 40 million to complete.

A Google Street View in Clearwater, purchased by the church in 2017, shows the atrium office tower at 601 Cleveland St., according to the Tampa Bay Times.

A Google Street View in Clearwater, purchased by the church in 2017, shows the Atrium Office Tower at 601 Cleveland St., according to the Tampa Bay Times.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, the church owns various properties in Clearwater, including an empty auto garage at 715 Laura St.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, the church owns various properties in Clearwater, including an empty auto garage at 715 Laura St.

DailyMail.com has reached out to the city’s procurement manager, Lori Vogel, as well as the Church of Scientology for more information and additional commentary.

Vogel told Tampa bay times On Tuesday that details of the plans submitted by any developers are made public by public disclosure until May 12, or any one of them is selected by city staff for recommendations for development.

In January, the Clearwater and Clearwater redevelopment agency announced that they would propose to ‘transform three city-owned sites into vibrant mixed-use properties, bringing activity and regeneration to the city.’

The three locations include a 2.6-acre vacant city hall on Pierce Street and a 1.2-acre neighbor, which is also vacant. Moved to city hall functions located adjacent to town and ‘investigating demolition of existing structure,’ according to Tender.

A map showing plans for the redesign of a park in Clearwater, Florida near three properties

A map showing plans for the redesign of a park in Clearwater, Florida near three properties

Rendering of the park is seen as the city redevelops its downtown area

Rendering of the park is seen as the city redevelops its downtown area

It also includes a 1.4-acre lot where the Hornview Center sat before it was demolished in February 2019. It sits a lot on the corner of Cleveland Street and Ossola Avenue, the city’s main coastline.

The three sites are part of Imagine Clearwater – the city’s $ 64 million master plan to redevelop Coachman Park and a 22-acre waterfield boundary owned by the city City documents.

The plan includes a $ 15 million, 4,000-seat covered amphitheater as well as a park with ‘a garden, playground, greenspace, trail and gateway plaza’.

The Tampa Bay Times reported that two of the parcels, the City Hall site and the Harborview Center site, would require a referendum for voter approval – with officials planning for March 2022.

City Manager Bill Horn told Tampa bay times In 2019, church leaders made it clear that they wanted to see a vibrant city. ‘

“However, it has not always been clear to me what exactly that means,” he said.

Tom de Voctt, a former Scientology executive who oversees the church’s property in Clearwater from 1996 to 2001, told the outlet that the church “has one intention, and only one intention.”

“Buy as many properties for the church as you want – whether they use it or not, whether they sit it there and let it rot – so no one else can be there,” he told the outlet.



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