- January 27, 2015
WINTER GARDEN A preliminary community meeting intended for residents near the area under consideration turned into nearly full Winter Garden City Commission Chambers Oct. 12.
City staff had invited such citizens around the 90-acre portion of the Walkers Pond property, which stretches from Lake Roberts to Walker Pond Road, with Windermere Country Club immediately south. Developers wish to see Winter Garden annex this piece of land.
But the other 6 1/4 acres abut the western side of Windermere Road and would remain unincorporated Orange County, so many received notification from the office of District 1 Orange County Commissioner S. Scott Boyd about the meeting.
Thomas Daly, president of the Daly Design Group that provided landscape architecture for Key Isle in Ocoee, presented a first draft of the 120-lot and four-lot areas. The larger area would include 43.26 preservation acres, making the maximum density 2.57 units per acre, whereas the smaller area would have 1.75 preservation acres for a max density of 0.89 units per acre.
The 1986 Joint Planning Area agreement local municipalities entered with Orange County provided the reasoning for the split — the 90-acre area is in the allotted land for Winter Garden to annex and is abutting current city property, whereas the separated area is neither allotted nor abutting.
“The city of Ocoee, the city of Winter Garden, Windermere and Orange County, along with Apopka and a bunch of other cities, came together to figure out what would be a reasonable annexation of municipalities,” Daly said.
The average lot size would be about one-third of an acre. Zoning would change to Winter Garden PUD, although the land is part of the Windermere Rural Settlement. Toll Brothers is the builder Daly has in mind, but no application has been submitted.
Developers seek one- and two-story houses, a roundabout and setbacks of 15 to 20 feet, Daly said. There would be no community access ramp to Lake Roberts, but a few properties would be lakefront, he said.
A throng of locals rejected the proposal on the basis of disrupting the rural settlement and the neighboring properties, with a variety of related points. Windermere Crossings residents had concerns with disruptions to wetlands, possible flooding, environmental and fauna issues, home sizes, effects on neighbors, road quality and school capacity.
Contact Zak Kerr at [email protected]