- May 27, 2019
Orange County government and school district representatives held a community meeting Monday, April 29, regarding the rezoning of the property of the old Maxey Elementary School campus, 1100 E. Maple St., Winter Garden.
Julie Salvo, of OCPS facilities planning, is the applicant for the project. She’s requesting to rezone the property from R-2 (Residential District) to PD (Planned Development District) to repurpose the existing school site into an OCPS maintenance facility with agricultural educational buildings.
“We have … a somewhat empty building in our inventory,” Salvo said, referring to the old campus. “We have a lot of needs, district-wide, for ancillary and support facilities and special programs, and so we try to utilize, to the fullest extent possible, all of our buildings that are former schools.”
Salvo said OCPS is looking to repurpose the west side of the campus as a maintenance facility for some of its vehicles and equipment. The Orange Technical College Westside Campus, which is adjacent to the property, is currently being used for this purpose. Moving the maintenance facility from the college to the old Maxey campus would free up some room at the college.
“We currently have Westside Tech just to the west of the (old Maxey) school site, and Westside Tech also houses a maintenance area for our northwest maintenance community,” Salvo said. “(Westside Tech) is pretty full. … There’s a lot of portables on the site for the school and for the (maintenance) workers. There’s a lot of vehicles and parking, so we want to alleviate some of the pressure on the site (of Westside Tech).”
The maintenance facility would be relocated to an existing building on the west side of the campus. The east side of the campus is currently being used for agricultural education purposes and will continue to do so after the property is rezoned. The Special Hearts Farm and OCPS Transition School operate on this part of the campus.
“They have the animals already set up in their pens and their stables, and they have the staff and students already using the portables that are currently on campus, and so those portables would remain for that use,” Salvo said of Special Hearts Farm.
The farm is a nonprofit dedicated to serving individuals with intellectual disabilities by providing adult day training, supported employment, and possible entrepreneur business opportunities related to farming and gardening experiences.