McGinley Farm, a 900-acre peanut and cattle farm located in Ocala, Florida, was sold to the city of Ocala on Monday. The farm will be redeveloped into a commerce park that would be the largest certified site in the state of Florida.
City officials anticipate the future business and industrial hub, named “Florida Crossroads Commerce Park,” will become one of the premier employers in Central Florida. They estimate that the park will employ about 3,000 people, creating new employment opportunities in the Ocala area.
“It makes it one of the best places, if not the very best premier logistical hub for the state of Florida,” said Marion County Commissioner Carl Zalak. “That’s why we’re here today, we’re here to celebrate opportunity in the midst of all the greatness that has come the last couple years in economic development.”
The property is located on County Road 484, only two miles from I-75. Since it will mostly consist of industrial businesses, the location makes it ideal and central to transport items and goods to major cities, such as Tampa and Orlando, which are both less than two hours away from the site.
Richard McGinley, one of the three shareholders of the farm, along with his mother and sister, has been a part of it since his father passed away in 2003. But, he says he’s ready and excited for the new change.
“Well you know, there’s always the unknown that always gives you a bit of uneasiness, but I feel real well working with the CEP [Chamber and Economic Partnership] and the county,” McGinley said.
The city plans to widen County Road 484 to allow for more traffic in the future, and the payment for the farmland is still being negotiated.
Construction will not be completed for another few years.