Tag Archives: plaza

Real estate finance expert joins Ian Black Real Estate team

via Tampa Bay Newswire


George Kruse brings with him more than 20 years of real estate finance experience

SARASOTA, Fla. (Dec. 21, 2016) – Real estate finance executive George Kruse has joined the Ian Black Real Estate (IBRE) team as a Sales Associate in the firm’s Sarasota office. Kruse brings with him more than 20 years of experience on both the debt and equity sides of commercial investments. In addition to his role as a commercial broker, he will provide the IBRE team with guidance in value creation, financing opportunities and an understanding of the present debt and equity environments.

Kruse is also a Senior Managing Director at Osprey Capital, a Tampa-based commercial real estate finance company, specializing in the financing of value-add investment opportunities.

“We’re thrilled to welcome George to the team,” said Ian Black, partner at Ian Black Real Estate. “His experience on the financing side of the industry is a valuable add-on to our existing skill set and will go a long way in providing our clients with the highest level of service available.”

Leveraging Kruse’s expertise in the finance industry will allow the IBRE team to better assess opportunities for clients and maximize their investment potential.

Previously, Kruse spent more than seven years as the sole managing director of Vesta Equity, LLC, a private real estate investment fund based in Sarasota. Under his leadership, Vesta made over $200 million in small balance senior and equity investments nationwide. He also oversaw both the lending and investment divisions and structured the fund’s capital deployment strategies.

Prior to that, he served as an Investment Officer at CapitalSource Finance in both the New York and Orlando offices. At CapitalSource, Kruse was directly involved in over $600 million in commercial loan and hypothecation line transactions.

Kruse earned his bachelor’s degree in finance and management from the University of Florida and his Master of Business Administration from Columbia Business School. He recently obtained his Florida Real Estate license.

“It’s an honor to join the Ian Black team and put my experience in real estate finance to use in this side of the industry,” said Kruse. “I’m looking forward to starting my career as a commercial sales associate and working alongside such a strong team of brokers in the Sarasota market.”

Kruse is currently on the Advisory Board for the University of Florida’s Masters of Science in Real Estate (MSRE) program, as well as the Board of the Columbia University Club of Sarasota. He is a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and the Sarasota Commercial Investment Division (CID), and is regularly asked to moderate and sit on panels about private commercial financing.

About Ian Black Real Estate
Ian Black Real Estate (IBRE) is a boutique commercial real estate brokerage firm located in Sarasota, Fla. The firm is one of the largest commercial brokerage firms in Southwest Florida and boasts a deep knowledge of the commercial real estate market in Sarasota and Manatee counties and the surrounding area. For more information, visit ian-black.com.

Click here for original press release

State Road Plaza in Cuyahoga Falls gets its Groove Back in new plan.

Upscale future for Falls plaza

The State Road Plaza’s future has solid footing and a real optimism looking to the future!


An upscale shopping center and housing development may soon replace the dilapidated State Road Shopping Center.

The development, called Portage Crossing, was announced at a news conference by Cuyahoga Falls officials at the city’s Natatorium on Thursday.

Last fall, the city bought the plaza at State Road and Portage Trail from State Road Associates for $10.2 million.

Cuyahoga Falls Development Director Susan Truby said the dilapidated shopping center was ”truly the black eye of our city.”

What will replace it will be a neighborhood marketplace that is walkable, unique and community-focused, officials said.

The first phase of the project will include about $30 million to $35 million in investment into a retail area that will be anchored by an upscale grocery store and several smaller retail or restaurant establishments.

It will be much smaller in total retail size at 150,000 square feet than the 300,000 square feet that the plaza once held.

Unlike the current plaza, which faces State Road, the new development will face Portage Trail, which also will get some improvements such as parallel parking, colored concrete and greenery to make it clear that it will be an area to slow down, Truby said. State Road along the new development will be turned into a boulevard with trees lining the middle.

The grocery store, which will be an anchor tenant, will have traditional parking and entrances. The grocery store will be 60,000 square feet and the space is expandable to 90,000 square feet.

The retail establishments along Portage Trail will have their entrances on the main street, which will encourage people to get out of their cars and walk around and even walk across Portage Trail to the other side of the development, which also will have retail.

‘It’s been a long time coming for the community,’‘ said Falls Mayor Don Robart. ”I think in the end, they’re going to be very, very pleased and excited about the quality and the product.”

Additional phases of the project, which could total $60 million, could be another retail phase or townhomes flanking both ends of the retail area, but will be dependent upon the economy improving.

Well-known developer

The developer for the project will be Cleveland-based Stark Enterprises and its Chief Executive Officer Robert L. Stark. Stark has developed such projects as Crocker Park in Westlake and several in the Akron-area, including West Market Plaza, the Shops at Fairlawn and the Strip in Jackson Township.

Stark said building designs and green space areas will be like Crocker Park.

An agreement has yet to be penned with Stark, and a lot of the details will be hammered out in the next three to four months before it must go in front of City Council for approval. But Robart said Stark has been a strong supporter of the city and is committed to the project. Stark also has been working with the city as a consultant to come up with a master plan to address the revitalization of the downtown area, which the mayor said will look more like Crocker Park than the State Road project.

Robart said he doesn’t see Portage Crossing as a regional draw, but serving the residents of the general area.

For the full article, click here <—–

By Betty Lin-Fisher
Beacon Journal business writer