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Windermere Observer Thursday, Apr. 14, 2016 2 years ago

High-density apartments planned near Big Sand Lake

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Off Turkey Lake Road right by Boo Boo Lake, developers seek 286 multifamily units.
by: Zak Kerr Staff Writer/Reporter

DR. PHILLIPS  In a change from a 2014 plan, developers of the Eden Springs PD would like to build 286 multifamily apartment units instead of 329 timeshare units. The apartments would be in two buildings no taller than 85 feet on the western shore of Boo Boo Lake, according to maps of this proposal.

County staff hosted a community meeting April 7 at Dr. Phillips High, where Miranda Fitzgerald presented on behalf of the applicant team.

This 9.98-acre portion of what once was a Yogi Bear campground, as well as the rest of the developers' parcel, is currently slated for commercial land use. No high-density land use exists in the immediate vicinity, according to the county map, which local resident Jim Pasquinelli said would make this project incompatible.

“Turkey Lake Road is a complete choke point,” Pasquinelli said. “How many times does traffic back up from Walmart to Sand Lake Road and then the post office to Sand Lake Road? It's ridiculous to get up and down that road.

Fitzgerald said this project would differ from similar recently withdrawn projects in the area, such as for the Majorca PD, because of 652 reserved p.m. peak-hour trips. Prior owners of this parcel, including Dr. P. Phillips Hospital, contributed to intersection agreements in 2006 for vested trips that expire Nov. 28, 2018, she said.

The property would have three access points on the west side of Turkey Lake Road, with no plans for any traffic light, Fitzgerald said. She also mentioned buffering in the area surrounding the apartments, especially along Big Sand Lake.

“I hear you, and I've heard Renzo (Nastasi, Orange County transportation planning manager) talk,” Pasquinelli said. “Anyone that lives in real life in Orlando and who reads the traffic analysis – they're two different worlds. It's just not reality.”

Pasquinelli said he would prefer a maintained commercial use for something the Dr. Phillips community could use to be more self-contained, such as a hardware or home improvement store. This led to District 1 County Commissioner S. Scott Boyd saying officials are trying to get infrastructure moving and updating attendees on nearby construction.

Work on Daryl Carter Parkway to connect it to South Apopka-Vineland Road should begin in September or October, Boyd said. The Daryl Carter Parkway interchange improvement is a big goal moving forward, he said. A flyover would go over Palm Parkway en route to South Apopka-Vineland Road, a long way from two years ago with basically nothing, he said.

Another resident with decades of experience in the timeshare industry said that industry has been in turmoil: “As a timeshare, that has a snowball's chance in Hell of being developed.”

Local Roy Messinger said timeshares probably would be better than apartments in terms of putting fewer cars on the roads during peak hours, but Fitzgerald said it likely would be not so different. Messinger also agreed with Pasquinelli that a density of 28.6 units per acre seemed too high for the area.

 

Contact Zak Kerr at [email protected].

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