CLEARWATER, Fla. (WTSP) – The Church of Scientology is moving forward on a secretive plan to take over downtown Clearwater through aggressive property acquisition. According to a report in the Tampa Bay Times, the church plans to turn the area into a master retail district.
The plan, according to two city officials briefed by Scientology leader David Miscavige, requires all property from Osceola to Myrtle avenues between Drew and Pierce streets being bought by the church, its parishioners or others willing to participate.
The plan involves the church, its parishioners or other willing participants buying up all the property in the downtown area from Osceola to Myrtle avenues between Drew and Pierce streets.
The church then wants to recruit a few major retailers as anchors for the shopping district and choose the rest of the businesses with a concept geared toward high end retail.
The church already owns a good portion of downtown and has been buying up more parcels for the past several months through anonymous LLCs.