560,000 Acres For Sale in Florida Expected to Bring $1 Billion

April 8th, 2015 By Theresa Geyer in Blog,Florida Real Estate,NY Times,Sales. Tags: , , , ,

The enormous tract of land, owned by the Foley Timber and Land Company, is about 560,000 acres, or nearly the size of Rhode Island.

The land is almost empty except for the cedar, oak and other hardwood trees that cover close to 900 square miles between Tallahassee and Gainesville along the gulf coast just south of the Florida Panhandle. Foley has modest timber operations on the land that generate about $50 million a year.

But for a potential buyer, the land represents an opportunity to develop or sell development rights to a largely uninhabited corner of the state.

“The future of Florida is for sale here,” Howard H. Leach, one of the majority owners of Foley, said in an interview. “Growth is going to come, and when it does it is going to be significant.”

The land has an unusual history. It was once owned by the consumer products giant Procter & Gamble, which harvested the trees and processed them at a nearby mill to make pulp for Pampers diapers.

The land also has a unique distinction for Florida:  It has never been hit by a hurricane.

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