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ResiBuilt is under contract to buy 168 acres in Fruitland Park near the Villages with plans for a new subdivision with over 600 homes. (Handout courtesy of Maury L. Carter & Associates)
ResiBuilt is under contract to buy 168 acres in Fruitland Park near the Villages with plans for a new subdivision with over 600 homes. (Handout courtesy of Maury L. Carter & Associates)

FRUITLAND PARK — The Fruitland Park Planning and Zoning Board unanimously approved the preliminary plat for a 603-home community on 158 acres located south of Lake Ella Road and east of Rolling Acres Road. 

The plan, submitted by ResiBuilt, calls for 413 single-family homes and 190 townhomes with a density of 3.78 units per acre. Based in Atlanta, ResiBuilt specializes in purpose-built rental homes and opened an Orlando office in 2021. On large projects like this one, ResiBuilt often sells lots to other production homebuilders to create a balance of for-sale and for-rent homes. The strategy adds variety to the community and facilitates a faster lease-up on the rental side. 

The company is under contract to buy the property from an investment group led by Daryl Carter of Maury L. Carter and Associates.

“The property is located approximately one mile from The Villages, one of the best and fastest growing communities in the United States,” Carter said. “In the City of Fruitland Park with existing land and zoning for single family and commercial use with a high percentage of usable land, the property is prime for development.”

The preliminary plat from Madden Moorhead & Stokes calls for detached home lots with a minimum width of 50 and 60 feet, and corner lots will be 15 feet wider than the minimum lot widths. Townhome lots will be 24-feet by 120-feet. 

At its April 20 meeting, the board unanimously recommended its approval to the Fruitland Park City Commission, with a condition. It won’t go to the commission until a master development agreement (MDA) is completed. That is still underway, Jay Byce, ResiBuilt co-founder and senior vice president told GrowthSpotter.

Byce also told GrowthSpotter that other details are yet to be worked out, including what builders ResiBuilt will partner with, and whether or not the community will feature fee-simple or rental homes.

“This will be a multi-phased master planned project that will likely feature multiple for sale builders and a professionally managed section of rental homes as well,” he said. 

The preliminary development plan, which was done by Madden, Moorhead & Stokes, features 49.7 acres of open space, which includes almost 10 acres for recreation, 21.3 acres for stormwater management and 17 acres for buffers and miscellaneous.

According to the plan, there is ingress and egress on both Lake Ella and Rolling Acres Roads, which, in the last decade, have become pieces of a popular route to get around The Villages, from County Road 466 to County Road 466-A. 

During a September planning and zoning board meeting, local residents expressed concerns about the roads, including the condition of Lake Ella Road and the need for a traffic signal. 

A draft MDA provided by Fruitland Park outlines road improvement ResiBuilt will be responsible for. They include: 

  • Dedicating a maximum of 50 feet of right of way along the property boundaries with both Rolling Acres and Lake Ella Roads. 
  • Improving Rolling Acres along the property boundaries to a two-lane road. 
  • Widening and improving Lake Ella along the property entrance, which will include four-foot paved shoulders and a minimum of 11-foot lanes. 
  • Evaluating the installation of a traffic signal and other improvements at the intersection of Lake Ella and Rolling Acres, “and if a signal is deemed feasible and warranted, install the traffic signal,” the draft MDA says.

This would be the second purpose built rental community on Lake Ella Road. In 2021, RealOp Investments purchased Lake Ella Estates, a shovel ready subdivision approved for 232 lots just across the street. That project is currently under construction.

Mas Development also has two BFR communities in the pipeline in Wildwood. Solamar at Wildwood is currently under construction, and the developer received site plan approval this month for Townhomes at Powel.

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