Some of the units within Tavistock Development Company‘s next apartment community in Lake Nona will be designed as two-story lofts, a unique element the developer has never before worked into a project.
But in order to get the OK from Orange County, the team behind one of the hottest master-planned communities in the country had to tweak the design.
An earlier iteration of the project showed a parking lot along J. Lawson Boulevard with residential buildings of varying heights pushed more toward the middle of the property. With single-family homes already lining both sides of that roadway, Orange County planners advised the development team to put buildings along J. Lawson to create a more urban feel and to match the surrounding neighborhoods.
Tavistock went back to the drawing board. The plan ultimately approved by the county commission on November 15 calls for a 342-unit apartment community with a series of two-story carriage homes facing J. Lawson Boulevard near where it intersects Wyndham Lakes Boulevard, roughly ten miles south of the Orlando International Airport.
The carriage homes will include front porches.
Julie Salvo, Tavistock’s director of planning and entitlements, told the commission that her team likes the final product even better.
“It’s very nice,” she said. “The original plan that we had submitted had parking along J Lawson and it wasn’t quite as attractive. So we are really actually happy with the outcome.”
While the apartment building will rise three stories, four of the buildings will go up another level in places to accommodate two-story units with a top-floor loft.
When plans were submitted last summer, Karlee Dutton, Tavistock’s senior communications manager, told GrowthSpotter that the unique space could be utilized in myriad ways by residents.
“With so many more people working from home, this could be a great option for an office,” she said. “It could also be used for a play area or entertainment space.”
She added, “The loft apartments are not available at any of our other Lake Nona apartment communities.”
Tavistock owns more than 11,000 acres in Lake Nona, which has appeared on RCLCO‘s list of the nation’s top-selling communities for 11 consecutive years. Lake Nona saw 403 home sales in 2022, the 37th highest among all master-planned communities.
“Our mix of amenities, neighborhood options, public art, A-rated schools, and community events combined with top entertainment destinations and active employment centers makes Lake Nona a one-of-kind place to live,” Rob Adams, Tavistock’s VP of Residential Development, said in a recent statement about the latest ranking. “We’re focused on creating an environment where people can thrive and that commitment continues to make Lake Nona one of the fastest-growing communities in Central Florida and in the country.”
While home sales remain high in the area, Tavistock continues to add to Lake Nona’s multifamily inventory as well.
The latest project would be titled Kelson Apartments, according to site plans by engineering and planning firm Donald W. McIntosh Associates.
It will consist of ten apartment buildings, nine two-story apartment carriage buildings with two units apiece, and a 6,767-square-foot clubhouse.
A swimming pool amenity area is located directly to the east of the clubhouse, while a playground and dog park would occupy space on the southeastern edge of the property.
The site also includes a surface parking lot with 607 spaces.
The apartment community will have 156 one-bedroom units and 186 two or three-bedroom units.
The project would rise on a 17-acre parcel directly to the northwest of Tavistock’s 348-unit Lake Nona Ariel Apartments, which opened on Lake Nona Boulevard in 2018.
The land sits south of where the Orange County school district plans to build a new high school by 2029 and just southwest of the future home of the Orlando campus for Inter American University of Puerto Rico, which will also include student housing.
Nearby, at Lake Nona’s Town Center, Disney is moving forward with development plans for its 1.8 million-square-foot corporate campus.
Tavistock submitted the application Jan. 18 for a framework master plan on behalf of Disney, which paid $46.4 million in 2021 for the 58-acre site. Vice President Jessi Blakely said the firm is acting in an advisory capacity for Disney to begin the process of approvals for construction of the future regional campus.
The project narrative noted that the “Office Campus will contain a strong open space element. Internal walkways will connect all buildings and lead to a centralized open space area that will serve as the heart of the campus.”
Construction will be phased, but upon completion, the campus would consist of six office buildings (B1-B6), two flex buildings (B7 and B8), three parking garages, a central plant, and a surface parking lot for visitors. Blakely declined to provide more details on the phasing plan for the project.
Access to the campus will be restricted to a handful of guard-gated entrances. Once inside the campus, employees and visitors will be able to circulate via an internal loop road.
Tavistock has already completed a number of apartment communities within Lake Nona and has several more in the works.
In March, after the company won approval from the City of Orlando to increase the maximum building height in Lake Nona, it unfurled plans for its largest multifamily development to date.
Skylar Apartments, planned for property across from Town Center, would consist of 625 residential units spread across three mixed-use residential towers and eight 2-story townhouses.
Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at (407)-800-1161 or dwyatt@GrowthSpotter.com, or tweet me at @DustinWyattGS. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn