Local residents learned what's in store for the future and heard a communtywide update from local leaders at the Horizon West Town Hall meeting Thursday, June 6.
Attendees of the town hall were updated on the upcoming growth of Villages H and F, which is seeing an expansion. The next big project, according to Chief Planer of the Orange County Planning Division Eric Raasch, involves Village I.
The amount of growth in the last five years has caused more construction and “a lot of growing pains,” said Orange County District 1 Commissioner Betsy VanderLey.
“We have, at this point in time, roughly 1,000 new residents a week moving to the Central Florida area and Horizon West is one of the fastest growing areas in the United States,” VanderLey said.
Also discussed were future transportation projects. The construction on New Independence Parkway should begin in June and finish in January 2020. This roadway would allow a connection to U.S. Route 27, according to Brian Sanders, Chief Planner for the Orange County Transportation Planning Division.
Christine Lofye, Orange County Public Works project manager in the Traffic Engineering Division, talked about plans for new traffic signals, a temporary multi-way stop at Reams Road and Summerlake Park Boulevard, and school and speed signs at Windermere High School.
Orange County Public Schools continue to grow, according to Orange County District 4 School Board Member Pam Gould. Fourteen new schools are planned in the next five years and three new schools will be opening this August.
Questions were asked from the audience regarding law enforcement presence in school zones, the construction of an elementary school near Overstreet Road, and what would be done with the temporary mast arm street signals once permanent signals were installed.
Check back for a complete updated story.