UPDATED: MARCH 8, 2016 11:44 PM — The developer of a Hindu temple west of Lake Ruby has assembled 14 adjacent parcels totaling 2.59 acres over the past four years directly across the street, with the goal of expanding the religious center, paving a new parking lot and building a 3,800-square-foot home and office to serve the growing congregation.
Located at 11414 S. Apopka Vineland Road, the Maa Durga Sri Sai Baba Hindu Temple has been open for five years, a former single-family home converted and expanded to 3,621 square feet by owner Karam Duggal.
A growing Hindu community and demand for temple services prompted Duggal to file a Development Plan last year to expand the temple by 6,000 square feet.
Duggal assembled 14 adjacent parcels between 2012 and 2015 totaling 2.59 gross acres directly across the street from the temple property, located west of S. Apopka Vineland Road, north of 3rd Street and south of 2nd Street.
He now wants to rezone that land from R-CE to PD, and aggregate it into the existing Buena Vista Commons PD to the south that zones his temple building. Duggal can them develop that 2.59 acres into the parking lot and 3,800 square feet of office and a duplex, which will house the temple's two priests on site, instead of Duggal paying to rent them a home off-site.
The PD/Land Use Plan zoning change goes before Orange's Development Review Committee on Wednesday, followed by a likely date with the Planning & Zoning Commission in April, and Board of County Commissioners in late May or early June.
If the zoning change is approved, Duggal would amend and resubmit his DP for the temple's expansion to include the future parking lot and building, and apply for construction permits after.
Constance Owens, civil engineer on the project for Tri3 Civil Engineering Design Studio, said the entire process could be complete by the fourth quarter of this year, pending unexpected delays in the permitting process. Two community meetings were held for the project in the past year with nearby residents.
Expanded parking that had been previously approved by the county, and would have lied within 20 feet of a mobile home park, will be relocated to maintain a "good neighbor" buffer with the residents.
Rick Swisher Architects of Winter Park is designing the temple expansion.