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By Dorie Cox
Plans for Ft. Pierce Megayacht Center were rejected by Fort Pierce county commissioners in early April. Partners for the proposed project were reported to have indicated the yard would work on government and commercial vessels instead of the previously stated megayachts.
A report in the Treasure Coast Newspapers stated that yachting industry veteran Buddy Haack withdrew from the project and that the company owner Richard Ochsner wrote that the new focus would yield more returns.
“Our business model shows revenue projections from the government-commercial operations at least initially far exceeds mega-yacht operations due to lower startup cost and the fact that it is not seasonal revenue,” Ochsner wrote in an email to Deputy County Administrator Mark Satterlee. “The mega-yacht operations can start at the same time but will require a significantly larger investment of time and money to begin to generate revenue. This would be done by utilizing revenues and profits from the government-commercial operation to offset some of that time and money.”
The city has pushed for development of the 20 acres of waterfront land on Harbour Pointe Park, located on the north side of the Port of Fort Pierce, to bring jobs to the area and fill a need for such a facility in the area.