Oakland places moratorium on multi-family housing projects

The town temporarily will not accept and process new applications related to apartments, condos, townhomes and duplexes.

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Oakland’s mayor and commissioners think there is enough multi-family housing in the town based on a needs study previously conducted. The Town Commission has taken the first step in the process of placing a 180-day moratorium that “prohibits the acceptance and processing of new applications, including special-exception uses, rezonings, comprehensive plan amendments and other development applications or plans proposing to increase multi-family entitlements.”

Town Commissioners voted unanimously to pass the first reading of the public hearing.

“We have gone through three different developers for multi-family, and there have been two public meetings,” Town Manager Steve Koontz said. “One got to P&Z, and another got to public workshop. It’s apparent we can’t keep doing the same thing.

“The idea here in doing the moratorium is having open discussions with (Planning & Zoning) along with the commission, and if there are changes to the current zoning, then we can evaluate that … and make changes. The process isn’t working at this point.”

“It’s not like we don’t have diversity of housing at this point,” Stark said. “It’s a touchy subject, and I think it’s worthy of discussion.”

The second reading will take place at the Jan. 25, 2022, commission meeting.



Commissioners approved the applicant’s submittal for Secure Storage with revised elevations plus several stipulations. The storage facility will have nine buildings on nearly 14 acres at 16360 W. Colonial Drive, north of Florida’s Turnpike and south of Colonial.

Town Planner Jay Marder shared an update on the project, visibility, building specifications, frontage and landscaping. The two main buildings will face a Florida Department of Transportation retention area. Landscaping will include a line of trees between the retention and the building, and the driveway will have landscaping.

The buildings will hold various types and sizes of storage space, including indoor and outdoor.

Mayor Kathy Stark asked for the landscaping to be Florida native or Florida friendly.



• The Town Commission accepted the consent agenda, which included the following: an interlocal agreement with the city of Winter Garden, an acceptance of infrastructure for The Avenues on Oakland, approval of the new space for the Planning, Zoning and Permitting and Human Resources departments, and an increase in starting officer salary from $21.14 to $21.98.

• Commissioners approved the first reading and public hearing of a series of ordinances that annexes, rezones and designates land use for a parcel of land on East Oakland Avenue, east of Catherine Ross Road and slated to be part of a planned single-family residential development formerly known as Hidden Preserve and now being called The Grove at Oakland. Koontz said there is a small strip of land between West Colonial and the proposed development and stressed it will be properly buffered as commercial comes to the highway.

The Grove at Oakland will have 44 lots in the 19.2-acre community.

• Commissioners approved resolutions relating to prohibited parking and no-parking signs in certain areas of the town, including Southern Railway Road; proposed multi-family utility rates for water and wastewater; and the final subdivision plat for Phase 6B-3 of Oakland Park.

• Town Manager Steve Koontz said about 1,750 people attended and 580 toys were distributed at the Santa’s Lane event Dec. 4.

• The town’s Planning, Zoning and Permitting and Human Resources departments are temporarily set up in Historic Town Hall until Jan. 3, when they will move into their new offices at 2 W. Oakland Ave.

• Koontz announced that his first grandchild was born during the meeting.



Amy Quesinberry

Community Editor Amy Quesinberry was born at the old West Orange Memorial Hospital and raised in Winter Garden. Aside from earning her journalism degree from the University of Georgia, she hasn’t strayed too far from her hometown and her three-mile bubble. She grew up reading The Winter Garden Times and knew in the eighth grade she wanted to write for her community newspaper. She has been part of the writing and editing team since 1990.