This story brought to you for free by:

Pita Pit pulls plug on project; property for purchase

Back on the market — This property just north of the Stetson University campus on Woodland Boulevard in DeLand was slated to become a Pita Pit, a franchise laying claim to a fun atmosphere and healthy options. The franchisee, perhaps daunted by community opposition, decided to open shop in Daytona Beach instead.

Back on the market — This property just north of the Stetson University campus on Woodland Boulevard in DeLand was slated to become a Pita Pit, a franchise laying claim to a fun atmosphere and healthy options. The franchisee, perhaps daunted by community opposition, decided to open shop in Daytona Beach instead.

BEACON PHOTO/ERIKA WEBB B

After a monthslong fight over whether a Pita Pit would fit at the corner of Woodland Boulevard and Plymouth Avenue in DeLand, the restaurant chain has changed its mind, and the property is back on the market.

The Pita Pit plan won approval in January 2017 from the DeLand City Commission to replace the vacant Primitive Baptist Church on the narrow lot. 

But neighbors’ opposition and concerns about traffic discouraged the restaurant chain, according to the property owner.

“Because it dragged on so long, the legal bills mounted,” Benedict Land manager Michael Benedict said, “... because a few of the citizens there didn’t want it … they got fearful about what might happen when they opened.”

Benedict said he and his wife, company co-manager Stephanie Benedict, have grown tired of driving across the county to meet law-enforcement officers responding to trespassing at the two empty church buildings on the property, so they have listed the land for sale.

Interest has been high in the 50-foot-by-240-foot lot, Michael Benedict said, including from other restaurants.

“The goal is still actually to develop it,” he said. “The legal work is done, and it’s zoned appropriately.”

He added, “We were about to announce a really cool project, but they needed 2,000 square feet, and the site will only accommodate 1,600, and 16 parking spots.”

According to the Property Appraiser’s Office, Benedict Land LLC purchased the prominent parcel at 850 N. Woodland Blvd. for $165,000 in December 2015. 

The property, currently home to a vacant church and an accessory building, is listed for sale with SVN Alliance Commercial RE Advisors for $259,000.

“It’s such an ideal location,” Michael Benedict said.

- Erika Webb, erika@beacononlinenews.com 

Rate this article: 
Average: 4.3 (4 votes)