Owners of former Moroso racetrack ask county to overturn denial of redevelopment

The racetrack is being considered for a 2 million-square-foot development.

Owners of former Moroso racetrack ask county to overturn denial of redevelopment

The owner of an abandoned racetrack in the northwest Palm Beach County will be going to arbitration in order to redevelop 186.4 acres as industrial.

The site at 17047 Bee Line Highway is no longer used. Its owner, a part of New York's Sixth Street Specialty Lending company, wants to develop it for industrial purposes. The County Commission rejected a site-plan application in April 2022 by a vote of 4-2. It called for 2,12 million square foot of industrial space. Many residents were against the plan as they advocated racing on the site.

Moroso is one of two racetracks that are legal in South Florida. The other is Homestead.

The owner is planning to rename the Palm Beach Logistics Center. However, the future of this property remains uncertain after the deal to sell the property fell through.

The owner, Palm Beach County staff, and attorneys will be present on April 19 for a public hearing. Bram Canter will serve as the magistrate. He is a former judge of Florida's Division of Administrative Hearings.

Seth Behn of West Palm Beach, representing the owner, hopes that the arbitrator will recommend approval of the site plan, as it is 100% compliant with the code for the county. He said that the current zoning allows for industrial uses, but commercial ones are discouraged due to its proximity to aerospace testing sites.

Behn stated that the implications were enormous for the property, and caused concern in the planning community. We believe the vote was illegal and incorrect, and that it is a burden on the property.

In two weeks, the ruling of the magistrate will be expected. Behn says that although it wouldn't be binding, it would send an important message to the commission. After receiving the decision, the county has 45 days to present the item to the commission.

Behn suggested that his client might file a Bert J. Harris Jr. If the commission refuses to approve the site plan, Behn suggested that his client could file a Bert J. Harris Jr. This law provides relief to property owners who are burdened by a government agency that is imposing an excessive burden on the use of their property or the rights they have vested in it.

Denise Coffman, the Palm Beach County attorney, declined to comment.

The development would be one of the largest in Palm Beach County, at a moment when industrial rents are reaching record levels.

Behn stated that if they reject it again, we would move forward with our claim for tens and tens millions of dollars. This would cost the county a lot of cash instead of creating thousands jobs and $4 million in property tax revenue.