Saturday, February 7, 2009

Sheraton Iowa City Hotel Commences $11 M-Plus Renovation with Wall Breaking Ceremony

Mayor Regenia Bailey, CVB President Josh Schamberger in Attendance

MEMPHIS, TN—The 234-room Sheraton Iowa City Hotel (top right photo) has begun an $11 million-plus renovation, expected to be completed by mid-August 2009.

To mark the occasion, a number of local dignitaries attending the event, including Mayor Regenia Bailey, (middle right photo), CVB President Josh Schamberger and City Manager Michael Lombardo, participated in a ceremonial wall breaking.

Davidson Hotel Company, one of the nation’s largest independent hotel management companies, operates the hotel on behalf of joint venture owners, RockBridge Capital and Davidson.

“When we acquired the Sheraton in early 2008, it was clear that the property was not living up to its potential as a high-quality hotel for visitors to Iowa City and the University of Iowa.

"Nor did it possess the physical condition that would allow it to become an economic catalyst for the Pedestrian Mall and downtown area businesses,” said John A. Belden, (middle left photo) Davidson’s president and chief executive officer.

“By working with civic and business leaders in the community, however, we were able to craft an extensive renovation plan that would completely transform the hotel.

" Despite the extraordinary economic downturn gripping our country, I am proud to say that our ownership group has fulfilled its commitment to the city, and with this wallbreaking ceremony, we mark a new beginning for the Sheraton Iowa City.”

Located at 210 S Dubuque Street in Iowa City, the nine-story hotel features 13,000 square feet of meeting space (including 2,000 square feet of additional space being added to the lobby level).


Cyndi Norwood, Davidson Hotel Company, (901) 821-4155,
Jerry Daly, Chris Daly (media), Daly Gray Public Relations, (703) 435-6293,

Liberty Property Trust’s LEED® Registered Office Building Receives 'Office Building of the Year' Award

TAMPA, FL-- Liberty Property Trust (NYSE:LRY), the real estate investment trust that owns and manages nearly 2.8 million square feet of office and industrial properties in Tampa, announced that it has received the “Office Building of the Year” Award from the Tampa Bay Chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP) for its 4631 Woodland Corporate Boulevard building. (top right photo)

The award, presented to Liberty for its 90,000-square-foot 4631 Woodland Corporate Boulevard building, recognizes Liberty’s overall excellence in development and leasing.

This category is open to all office projects (either new construc­tion or renovated projects that were completed during 2008), and criteria in­clude total project value, occupancy rates, market vs. actual rates, and the complexity of project.

“We are very proud that our property won the ‘office building of the year’ award,” said Jody Johnston, (bottom left photo) vice president and city manager for Liberty Property Trust.
“Receiving the NAIOP award is prestigious, but more importantly, the award process provides us with the opportunity to measure our successes in development and leasing against the industry, while giving our team feedback that we can implement across our portfolio.”

Contact: Jody Johnston Liberty Property Trust, 813/881-1776. Media: Margo Hunt Winans a.s.a.p.r., 757/404-8653

Palmer Electric Co. opens Jacksonville office

WINTER PARK, FL — Winter Park, Fla.-based Palmer Electric Co. is pleased to announce the opening of a residential division office in Jacksonville, Fla. Palmer established the 1,500-square-foot office/warehouse facility to provide electrical wiring services to North Florida homebuilders.

To date, Palmer Electric has secured contracts with Taylor Morrison at four subdivisions in Duval, Clay and St. Johns counties, and is currently wiring 57 homes under construction. The Palmer Electric Jacksonville office employs a support and field staff of nine.

Jacksonville is the latest residential division office Palmer Electric has opened outside of Central Florida. Last fall, the Company opened an office in Lakeland, Fla., to serve homebuilders in Polk and Hillsborough counties.

“With the decline in homebuilding, we decided to go where our clients are building,” said Don Stebbins, (top right photo) vice president residential division, Palmer Electric Co.
Palmer Electric Company is a provider of electrical contracting for commercial institutional and residential customers.

Additionally, the Company provides service and repairs to utilities, businesses and consumers. Founded in 1951, the Company is headquartered in Winter Park, Fla., and has residential division offices in Lakeland and Jacksonville, Fla. The Company employs a staff of 350. For additional information, visit

Contact: Elaine Ingra, PR WORKS!, PH: 407 384-1344,,

SchenkelShultz Designs New Stetson University Building in DeLand, FL

ORLANDO, FL – SchenkelShultz Architecture, Orlando, one of Florida’s leading green design firms, designed Stetson University’s new $6.7 million, 20,074-square-foot Sage Hall Science Center addition in DeLand, in Volusia County, FL.

(Top left photo, Elizabeth Hall, Stetson University campus)

The state-of-the-art addition is designed to encourage cross-disciplinary collaboration of faculty and students in the University’s Biology, Chemistry, Geography and Environmental Science, and Physics departments.

The garden wall fa├žade reflects the historic character of the campus architecture. The addition will include: general biology and microbiology laboratories; a vertebrate anatomy teaching laboratory; a field science teaching laboratory; general, organic, analytical and physical chemistry laboratories;

Also: environmental chambers; a large group classroom which offers flexibility for small group instruction; student collaboration areas; and a Gillespie Museum of Minerals display. PPI Construction Management, Gainesville, FL, served as construction manager for the project.

Contact: Kenneth H. Cristol 407-774-2515

Tri-City Electrical Finishes $1M Job in Bradenton, FL

ORLANDO, FL – Altamonte Springs-based Tri-City Electrical Contractors, Inc. completed $1 million of work at the new 145,000-square-foot, 109-unit Waters Edge of Bradenton assisted living facility in Bradenton, in Manatee County, FL, under its contract with Core Construction.

Contact: Kenneth H. Cristoll, 407 774 2515.

Tilt-Con Completes High School in Miami-Dade, FL

ORLANDO, FL – Altamonte Springs-based Tilt-Con Corporation completed Miami-Dade County Public Schools’ new 6-building, 157,735-square-foot High School YYY-1 at 11035 SW 84th Street, Miami, FL, under its contract with Betancourt Castellon Associates, Inc. (BCA), Miami, FL.

Ranked as the nation’s largest tilt-up concrete constructor by Engineering News-Record magazine, Tilt-Con utilized its economical multi-story system for tilt-up concrete walls. Designed by Silva Architects, Miami, Tilt-Con’s scope of work included foundations, slab-on-grade and tilt-up concrete wall panels.

Contact: Kenneth H. Cristol 407-774-2515

Keene Construction Completing New Publix in Flagler Beach, FL

ORLANDO, FL – Keene Construction Company, Maitland, is well under way on the new multimillion-dollar, 64,031-square-foot Publix at Beach Village retail center on State Road 100 east of Interstate 95 in Flagler Beach, FL, for North American Properties, Fort Myers, FL.

The center features a 46,031-square-foot Publix Super Market plus 18,000 square feet of additional retail space designed by Fisher & Associates, Clearwater, FL. Completion is slated for May 2009. Notably, Keene has constructed over 140 Publix stores for the Lakeland, FL-based grocery giant.

Contact: Kenneth H. Cristol 407-774-2515