O-Town West, Kerina earn P&Z recommendation

Planning and Zoning commissioners voted to recommend that County Commissioners adopt the requested amendments for the projects

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  • | 2:31 p.m. October 31, 2018
  • West Orange Times & Observer
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Two proposed development projects in Dr. Phillips are a step closer to breaking ground.

Orange County Planning and Zoning commissioners voted Oct. 18 to recommend county commissioners adopt the future land-use amendments for the proposed Kerina Parkside Planned Development project and the proposed O-Town West project.

The Kerina Parkside PD encompasses a 215.67-acre parcel located east and west of South Apopka Vineland Road, south of Buena Vista Woods Boulevard and north of Lake Street. The applicant is requesting to amend the future land-use designation of the property from low density residential, low-medium density residential, and rural/agricultural to Planned Development-Commercial/Office/Medium Density Residential/Low Density Residential/Senior Living/Conservation (PD-C/O/MDR/LDR/Senior Living/CONS).

The change would allow for the development of up to 450 single-family dwelling units; 350 multi-family dwelling units; 200 senior-living units; 100,000 square feet of commercial/retail; 50,000 square feet of office; a three-acre park; and 93 acres set aside for conservation. 

The O-Town West project — also known as the Hannah Smith PD — encompasses an 84.32-acre parcel located north of Interstate 4, south of Fenton St. and east of Lake Ruby. The applicant is requesting to change the future land-use designation of the property from activity center mixed use, activity center residential, and low-medium density residential to Planned Development-Commercial/Medium-High Density Residential to allow for the development of up to 1,800 dwelling units and up to 415,142 square feet of commercial space.

More than two hours of discussion took place — most in opposition to the Kerina project — prior to the vote. Planning Commissioner Paul Wean raised concerns regarding the Kerina project’s compatibility with the surrounding area.

“It’s got to be compatible with existing development and development trends in the area,” Wean said, referencing a future land-us policy in the Orange County Comprehensive Plan. “It doesn’t meet the test of being compatible with the existing development. My point is, if you’ve got nothing but residential and institutional use on South Apopka Vineland Road, how can you put commercial and office use down on South Apopka Vineland Road? Because that would be incompatible with existing development.”

Senior Planner Jennifer DuBois said because the proposed extension of Daryl Carter Parkway runs through the Kerina Parkside PD, the future land-use amendment is compatible with development trends in the area. She added that the area needs retail in the area because the area is mostly residential.

“We believe there’s a need for additional goods and services and convenient shopping to meet the daily needs of overwhelmingly residential population in the area,” DuBois said. “We feel that, currently, there’s a lack of convenient retail (and) professional office use to serve the daily needs of that residential population. Presently, they need to travel further outside of their community for goods and services.”

Additionally, Planning and Zoning Commissioner Jose Cantero said the area needs more retail development.

“If you drive up and down Apopka Vineland Road from Old Winter Garden Road all the way to Downtown Disney or to I-4, all you see is houses,” Cantero said. “I can’t see how this type of neighborhood use is not needed. … On a compatibility perspective, I’m not of the same position as Mr. Wean.”

Jim Hall, of Hall Development Services, added the Kerina project does follow a development trend within the area. Two adjacent projects — O-Town West and the Ruby Lake Ranch Planned Development — are both proposed a mixed-use projects.

“The development trend is that it’s all going to mixed use,” Hall said. “That’s exactly what the comp plan envisions.”

Hall also commented on traffic and said the Kerina project could reduce traffic in the area because it includes a neighborhood center consisting of a grocery store, restaurants and other retail shops. 

Chris Kopec was one of the residents who spoke about the Kerina project. 

“They’re trying to turn this area of Apopka Vineland (Road) into another Sand Lake Road,” Kopec said. “If they do this (development) here and start slapping in restaurants, slapping in commercial (and) slapping in apartments, all you’re going to do is bring all the Disney tourists that don’t come up here right now into this area, and they’re going to turn it into another Sand Lake Road.”

The Board of County Commissioners adoption hearing for the Kerina project and O-Town West project will take place at 2 p.m., Dec. 18 at 201 S. Rosalind Ave., Orlando.



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