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The west this year will welcome HomeGoods, Pollo Tropical, an Aldi supermarket and a freestanding emergency department Saint Lucie West. For those who aren’t familiar with the brands, Aldi is a “sister” company to Trader Joe’s, offering no-frills service but high-quality store brands at discount prices, while Pollo Tropical has been a very popular fast-food franchise down south due to its emphasis on fresh and healthy grilled foods. Meanwhile, The Atlantic at Tradition — a 252-unit luxury apartment complex in Tradition — is nearing completion.

Last year was the first since 2008 with more than 1,000 building permits, a sign growth is happening, according to city officials. Further evidence that businesses are returning are low commercial vacancy rates,which are slightly lower than state and national trends.

City officials anticipate the bulk of growth and development will occur out west. There’s plenty of room to accommodate westward growth. The city owns 27,308 acres southwest of Tradition, with the potential of more than 56,000 dwelling units.

“Developers are already starting to make that progression west,” Mayor Greg Oravec said. “You have some of the infrastructure ready.”

All of this is very exciting news for many residents. Meanwhile the city is also adding sidewalks in town and the project continues to extend the Crosstown Parkway to U.S. 1 in order to ease the flow of traffic within the city borders. It also purchased the 3100 acre McCarty Ranch out west with its many lakes and ponds in order to provide for potential future water needs while also adding to the city’s many recreational opportunities.

And to segue into real estate for a moment, while home prices have been increasing steadily at the rate of about 10% per year, St. Lucie County is still a bargain compared to the counties south of us (yes, you know who you are, Martin, Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade. And Monroe County? Fugeddaboutit!) Come check us out while we are still highly affordable! A 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with attached garage and screened in pool for under $150,000? You can still find them here, my friends.

Please email me at: SusanLaveryRealtor@gmail.com or call me at (772) 323-3130 if you would like to receive hot-off-the-press listings in the Treasure Coast from the multiple listing service. The information you receive will be more current and accurate than any online search available to consumers and I will not hound you constantly for your business either—only once in a while, and only by email if that’s what you prefer.