After a long period of neglect, a van that was sitting idle in an unassuming parking lot in South Florida was being renovated.
But when the owner got to the site, he saw a big change.
The owners were going to demolish the van, he said.
So he went to the city and hired an architect.
He found an architect who specializes in renovation.
He said the architect did an amazing job, adding a new coat of paint and other upgrades.
The van was now a luxury rental car.
The owner said the project cost $3 million.
The cost of the new paint and the new coat was $300,000, he told ABC News.
He was thrilled to have it in the building.
He told ABC affiliate WPBF, “It’s a new start.”
The new paint is $40,000.
He estimates it will cost about $30,000 more to restore the van to its former glory.
The restoration of the van will be a boon to the neighborhood, said Mark McFarland, a former city planner.
“This was a historic building and it’s been a vacant building for decades,” he said, “and it’s a blighted building for the people that live here.”
He said if the city did not do the work, the neighborhood would not get the benefits of the redevelopment.
“You can’t go in there and take something that was just sitting there,” McFarl said.
The van has been in the neighborhood for more than a decade.
In 2005, it was purchased by a woman who said it needed a big makeover.
She said the van was a little too heavy and needed a lot of work.
She wanted a big restoration, so she got a consultant to come in.
That same year, another woman bought the van for $1.3 million and a group of residents got together to build a new building.
They were working on a parking lot that was too small to house the new house.
The new owners, meanwhile, had the van restored to its original state.
They decided to demolishing the old van was the best option.
“We’re going to bring it back to life and do something with it,” said Kevin Ollens, a member of the team who is the project architect.
“I’m a car guy, so I think it’s going to look amazing.
I think we’re going in there with a lot more pride than we’re getting right now.”
The work started this past spring and is expected to be completed in June, McFarlands said.
He is hoping to have the van up and running by the end of summer.