BidVertiser ClickADu HilltopAds

The sight of an excavator digging into the dirt of the Shoppes of Wilton Manors was a long time coming for the Island City.

Comments to a picture of the construction posted on Facebook by Wilton Manors Vice Mayor Paul Rolli ranged from “long overdue” to “Hallelujah” to “Dreams really do come true!” 

While Rolli’s camera captured the first dig, the project is not funded by the city. Grass River Property, a Coconut Grove real estate investment and services company that owns the Shoppes of Wilton Manors, is constructing a pedestrian walkway. When completed the walkway will allow pedestrians to access and exit the plaza via Wilton Drive.  

“We’re building a sidewalk so all our patrons can safely walk to and from Wilton Drive,” said Jorge Espinal, a development manager for Grass River.   

Espinal said the COVID-19 pandemic slowed development plans for the plaza, but the sidewalk installation is the first step in upgrading the site. 

“Wilton Manors has potential to be a 24-hour city,” Espinal said.  

A building permit was issued to M.A. Construction Group on November 17, 2021, said Evangeline Kalus, Wilton Manors City Planner. In its permit with Broward County, the job value is listed at $118,000.  

The Shoppes of Wilton Manors is home to popular gay nightclubs Georgie’s Alibi and Hunters. Mark Hunter, one of the owners of Hunters Nightclub, applauded the installation of concrete and asphalt repair work.  

“First and foremost it will be safer for our pedestrian patrons to enter and exit the plaza,” Hunter said. “Second, it will increase visibility for a safer entry by car. Plus it gives a renewed walkability factor to Wilton Manors.”

The Gazette launched a Wilton Manors focused newsletter. Sign up today! You can also visit to join The Gazette’s community Facebook page.


'We've Been Talking About This for Years' - Commissioners Fed Up with Slow Progress of Wilton Drive Landscaping