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RELEASE – September 1st 2017

State approves funding for Braves spring training complex

State approves funding for Braves spring training complex
SARASOTA COUNTY - The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity on Thursday conditionally approved $20 million in funding for the new Atlanta Braves spring training complex being developed in West Villages in North Port. Earlier this summer, The West Villages Improvement District, along with Sarasota County, the City of North Port and the Atlanta Braves, filed the grant application seeking funding to help with facility construction costs.

This is the final piece of funding necessary to move the project forward. "We are pleased to have the state join the partnership of the city, county, West Villages Improvement District, Mattamy Homes and the Atlanta Braves to make this a reality," said West Villages Improvement District Chairman Martin Black, AICP, ICMA-CM.

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RELEASE – August 22nd 2017

Mattamy Homes Opens Renaissance at West Villages

Mattamy Homes Opens Renaissance at West Villages
West Villages, Fla. — Renaissance at West Villages is celebrating its grand opening, Saturday, August 19, from noon until 4 p.m. Mattamy Homes is opening four professionally decorated models as well as an onsite Sales Center and Design Studio. At completion there will be about 650 single family and paired villas in this new, gated neighborhood.

Ideally located between the Gulf of Mexico and the Myakka River and just 10 minutes from Interstate 75, West Villages in south Sarasota County is on its way to becoming the most desirable new community in Florida.

“We are so pleased with the enthusiastic response to our new designs and floor plans, explained Mattamy’s Tampa-Sarasota Division President Jim Birkholz. “We have already sold more than 30 homes and will welcome our first residents this fall.”

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RELEASE – July 7th 2017

West Villages Ranks 4th in National Master-Planned Community Sales

West Villages Ranks 4th in National Master-Planned Community Sales
West Villages, Fla. — RCLCO Real Estate Advisors has ranked West Villages Florida as the 4th Top-Selling Master-Planned Community in the United States in the first half of the year.
Already one of the fastest-selling new home communities in the United States, West Villages in south Sarasota County had 526 sales in the first half of 2017.
“We are proud to be ranked so highly on this prestigious list,” said Paul Erhardt, President of West Villages. “The momentum we are building is beginning to capture national attention as we put in place the building blocks for West Villages to be the most desirable new home town in the country.”
The community is home to the area’s finest and most reputable builders including Mattamy Homes, Neal Communities, Lennar, DiVosta, WCI Communities, Sam Rodgers Homes, D.R. Horton and M/I Homes.
West Villages also recently placed in the number four slot on the annual John Burns Real Estate Consulting list of top-selling master-planned communities in the United States. There were 848 new home sales in West Villages in 2016. West Villages is comprised of five actively selling neighborhoods, including Sarasota National, Gran Paradiso, Grand Palm, Island Walk and Renaissance. Two new communities are planned to open later this year.

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RELEASE – June 20th 2017

West Villages Names Paul J. Erhardt President

West Villages Names Paul J. Erhardt President
West Villages, FL — A veteran community developer, Paul J. Erhardt has been named President of the West Villages development team. Erhardt will direct all aspects development at West Villages, a 15,500-acre multi-builder, master-planned community in Sarasota County – the 4th fastest selling community in the United States.
Erhardt brings more than 13 years of experience in both homebuilding and community development in the region. Most recently, he was Senior Vice President of Homebuilding and Development for WCI Communities and he led WCI operations in Southwest Florida.
“I am excited to be a part of this dynamic and capable West Villages Florida team,” Erhardt said. “I am honored to have the opportunity to plan and develop an entirely new town which reflects the trends in the way people live today and try to anticipate the future.”
Erhardt has been in the homebuilding and development industry since 2001 and has a B.B.A. and M.B.A. from the University of Michigan.
“We are pleased to have Paul directing the West Villages Florida Development,” said John Peshkin, Managing Partner of Vanguard Land, LLC. “He is an accomplished leader with a vision for the community.”
West Villages Florida is made up of seven contiguous neighborhoods: Sarasota National, Grand Palm, Gran Paradiso, Island Walk, Renaissance and the upcoming Preserve and Oasis. Together, they comprise the West Villages. Plans are in the works for a new downtown within the heart of the community, as well the Spring Training baseball facility for the Atlanta Braves.
“Sarasota County and the City of North Port leaders have ensured the complex will be used for many other purposes other than just the spring training games,” Erhardt said.

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RELEASE – June 14th 2017

Study Conservatively Projects Braves Spring Training will have $1.7 Billion in Economic Impact

Study Conservatively Projects Braves Spring Training will have $1.7 Billion in Economic Impact
West Villages, FL — The new Atlanta Braves Spring Training Complex being developed in West Villages Florida in North Port is expected to generate more than $1.7 billion in economic impact during the 30-year contract with the team.
On June 12, 2017, The West Villages Improvement District, along with Sarasota County, the City of North Port and the Atlanta Braves, filed a grant application with the State of Florida asking for $20 million to help with facility construction costs. The economic impact study is part of the application process.
“This conservative impact study shows what a dynamic impact the Atlanta Braves Spring Training Complex is going to have on North Port, Sarasota County and the region,” said West Villages Improvement District Chairman Martin Black, AICP, ICMA-CM. “We know this stadium and the excitement of Major League Baseball have more than just an economic impact, it will truly touch this community for two generations or more.”
The spring training complex will enhance and promote tourism while providing jobs and economic growth within the City of North Port and Sarasota County.
The Stantec study goes into great detail explaining how the company came to its conclusions about the economic impact of the spring training complex.
“Using the Total Direct Annual Expenses … the indirect and induced effects were estimated using the multiplier provided in the 2009 Major League Baseball Florida Spring Training Economic Impact Study Report, to estimate a total economic impact resulting from Direct Expenses,” the report reads.
The study looks at comparative Southwest Florida spring training facilities and even evaluates the fan base in segments to make sure the impact numbers reflect the real direct expenses. Conservatively, the study looks at the 6,500-seat stadium at a slowly rising attendance over the first 10 years of the deal.
“To understand the long-term economic impact of Atlanta Braves Spring Training in West Villages, the total economic impact over the next 30 years was calculated, in net present value, assuming a conservatively steady annual attendance growth rate of 1 percent for the first ten years, to 2028, maintaining approximately 82 percent stadium capacity, for the following 20 years,” the study reads.

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Sarasota County Media Relations news@scgov.net, 941-861-NEWS (6397)
West Villages Communications sondra.guffey@mattamycorp.com, 941-483-6259
Atlanta Braves Public Relations beth.marshall@braves.com, 404-614-1336

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RELEASE – May 30th 2017

West Villages Welcomes M/I Homes

West Villages Welcomes M/I Homes
West Villages, Fla— West Villages Florida welcomes M/I Homes to one of the fastest selling Master- Planned Communities in the United States. M/I Homes is planning to build 136 homes in Oasis at West Villages, the community’s newest neighborhood. Oasis is conveniently located just off South Tamiami Trail, across from State College of Florida-Venice Campus.
M/I Homes will construct single family homes on 60’ and 70’ wide home sites. The homes will have tile roofs, three car garages, outdoor living spaces, open floor plans with the latest features and upgrades available, and they will range in size from about 2,100 sf to over 4,000 sf under air.
“We look forward to building in West Villages,” states M/I Homes Area President David Hunihan. “This is the first venture into South Sarasota County for M/I Homes, and we are excited to be a part of the growth here. West Villages has done such a great job of planning for the future, we think this will be one of the most desirable locations we offer. We can’t wait to get started!”
Perfectly situated between Florida’s Gulf of Mexico and the pristine Myakka River, West Villages is about ten minutes from Interstate 75 and 15 minutes from the Gulf Beaches. West Villages in South Sarasota County is the fourth fastest selling Master-Planned Community in the United States.
“M/I Homes is a wonderful complement for the homes already in West Villages. They bring a distinct style and quality that our future residents demand,” states West Villages General Manager Martin Black, AICP ICMA-CM.

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Sarasota County Media Relations news@scgov.net, 941-861-NEWS (6397)
West Villages Communications sondra.guffey@mattamycorp.com, 941-483-6259
Atlanta Braves Public Relations beth.marshall@braves.com, 404-614-1336

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RELEASE – MAY 28th 2017

Diocese of Venice chooses land in West Villages Florida for new church campus

West Villages, FL — The Diocese of Venice swapped vacant land and purchased additional lands for a total of 46 acres along River Road just south of the intersection with Tamiami Trail in West Villages Florida in the same development. The Diocese will build a new church campus since the land previously owned was not sufficient for the future parish site. 
“This location in West Villages is an ideal location for the Diocese to expand, to meet existing and future pastoral needs due to rapid growth in the area,” said Most Rev. Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida. “This is all part of the strategic planning by the Diocese of Venice.”
The Diocese sold 20 acres of land it had owned in West Villages toward the new property. “This benefits both the Diocese and the residents of West Villages,” said West Villages General Manager, Martin Black, AICP, ICMA-CM. “We feel the property the Diocese had owned here is well suited for our commercial development.”
Because home sales in West Villages are brisk and the Diocese is continually considering pastoral needs, the deal is well timed. “It will be a great benefit to the people buying homes in West Villages to have a community resource like the one that the Diocese is developing,” Black said.

West Villages is the fourth fastest-selling community in the United States and the Diocese also is growing. “We are in the right place,” Smeryk said. “The deal is about planning and growth.”

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Atlanta Braves in exclusive negotiations to make Sarasota County new spring home SARASOTA COUNTY

The Atlanta Braves have announced that Sarasota County is the destination for the team's new spring training complex, and the team is in exclusive negotiations with the county and its partners at the West Villages. If the terms of an agreement can be reached, the Braves will move their spring training operations from Central Florida to Sarasota County as soon as the 2019 spring season, said Braves Chairman and CEO Terry McGuirk, who has been leading the team's efforts to secure a new spring training site.

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West Villages #4 In Top-Selling Master Planned Communities

West Villages, FL— West Villages in south Sarasota County placed in the number four slot on the annual John Burns Real Estate Consulting list of top-selling master planned communities in the United States. There were 848 new home sales in West Villages in 2016. The West Villages is comprised of four existing neighborhoods—Sarasota National, Gran Paradiso, Grand Palm and Island Walk—with three new neighborhoods starting this year.

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WEST VILLAGES CONTINUES TO ATTRACT HOME BUYERS

West Villages, FL—Annual home starts in the West Villages area totaled 765 in the period ending June 30, 2016, according to MetroStudy. This includes the neighborhoods of Sarasota National, Grand Palm, IslandWalk at West Villages and Gran Paradiso at West Villages. Based on the same research, there were 611 starts in Lakewood Ranch and 261 in Palmer Ranch.

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RENAISSANCE AT WEST VILLAGES – NEW NEIGHBORHOOD, NEW HOMES, NEW PARK

West Villages, FL— Renaissance at West Villages is the first new neighborhood created by the partnership developing the 10,000-acre Master-Planned Community. Mattamy Homes is building about 650 paired villas and single family homes in this new neighborhood. Ideally located near Interstate 75 and just 15 minutes from the beach, West Villages in South Sarasota county is on its way to becoming the most desirable new community in southwest Florida.

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ATLANTA BRAVES CONTINUE DISCUSSIONS WITH SARASOTA COUNTY AND WEST VILLAGES

West Villages, Fla—Atlanta Braves Vice Chairman John Schuerholz has requested Sarasota County Commission continue discussions with the team about a potential Atlanta Braves’ spring training facility in Sarasota County. The proposed campus in the master-planned community of West Villages is envisioned to have training facilities, practice fields as well as a 7,500-seat stadium.

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