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Port St. Lucie Mayor Oravec: Southern Grove not City Center should be the city's downtown

By Keona Gardner, Treasure Coast Newspapers

PORT ST. LUCIE — The city should change its course from establishing a downtown at the City Center property on U.S. 1 and instead opt to create one at Southern Grove,  west of town, and find a way to connect Crosstown Parkway to South Hutchinson Island, Mayor Greg Oravec said Monday at the state of the city address.

“City Center is not our downtown,” Oravec told more than 167 people of his vision for the city at the annual speech. “Where your downtown can be is in Southern Grove.”

The City Center property has been tied up in federal court since November 2015, when the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission seized control from owner Lin "Lily" Zhong and US1 Real Estate Developments. 

An SEC complaint accused Zhong of making false or materially misleading representations to international investors, court records show. Zhong didn't contest the charges or oppose the sale.

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