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Clermont approves new projects on U.S. 27 in Wellness Way area

The Clermont City Council approved the land use and zoning to allow up to 600 multifamily units and 120,000 square feet of commercial uses on this 80-acre site just south of Hartwood Marsh Road in the Wellness Way area.
The Clermont City Council approved the land use and zoning to allow up to 600 multifamily units and 120,000 square feet of commercial uses on this 80-acre site just south of Hartwood Marsh Road in the Wellness Way area. (SM&E)

The Clermont City Council unanimously approved the land use and rezoning for a pair of developments on U.S. 27 that could add apartments, a hotel and commercial and retail uses to the Wellness Way area.

“These are part of the Wellness Way projects that have been waiting for the last couple of years while we work on the roads, the schools and other public facilities,” City Manager Darren Gray said.

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The larger of the two projects is owned by Hartwood Properties just south of Hartwood Marsh Road. The 80-acre site was annexed into the city in 2012 with a future land use designation of Regional Office. Shortly after, the owners sought high-density residential uses for 64 acres and general commercial (C2) use for the 16 acres fronting on U.S. 27. The HDR land use was denied in 2013 and the plan was tabled pending approval of the Wellness Way sector plan.

The Clermont City Council approved two rezoning applications for projects along U.S. 27 in the Wellness Way area.
The Clermont City Council approved two rezoning applications for projects along U.S. 27 in the Wellness Way area. (Lake County Property Appraiser/staff edit)

Now the owners have applied for Master Planned Development as the future land use and Planned Unit Development zoning, and City Planning Director Curt Henschel told council members both categories are appropriate for the site. A conceptual site plan filed with the application shows two potential multifamily communities, with a combined 600 units, and 100,000 square feet of commercial uses.

“This design offers one mixed use development scenario in order to depict potential uses, densities, and intensities of development,” the applicant wrote. “It does not reflect an intended development to be constructed.”

This 16-acre strip of land sits between U.S. 27 and the 743-acre South Lake Commons PUD, under contract to Lennar Homes, in the Wellness Way area. The plan calls for a hotel at the Schofield Road intersection and commercial parcels along U.S. 27.
This 16-acre strip of land sits between U.S. 27 and the 743-acre South Lake Commons PUD, under contract to Lennar Homes, in the Wellness Way area. The plan calls for a hotel at the Schofield Road intersection and commercial parcels along U.S. 27. (SM&E)

Gray emphasized that the land use and zoning approvals do not conflict with the council’s current moratorium on new multifamily development because there are no specific projects approved for the site. The developer could proceed with up to 10,000 square feet of general commercial use, but any residential uses or commercial projects over that size would have to come back to the City Council for site plan approval.

“We look forward to seeing what happens there,” Mayor Gail Ash said.

The land use allows for a maximum density of 12 units per area, and the conceptual plan by SM&E calls for low-rise apartment buildings in two separate communities, each with its own amenity center. The moratorium on new multifamily development is set to expire in April 2020, but council could decide to extend it, officials say.

The council will host a special workshop on the topic at 9 a.m. on Jan. 21 with Apartment Association of Greater Orlando AAGO and other stakeholders.

The massive mixed-use project covers over 700 acres. It's also approved for 800,000 square feet of commercial and office development.

The Hartwood site is immediately west of the the Hartwood Marsh Residential PUD, which was approved for annexation earlier this year and for development of a 321-home subdivision.

Following the Hartwood vote, the City Council also approved the annexation, land use and C2 zoning for a narrow, 16-acre strip of land along U.S. 27 just north of Schofield Road. The Bradshaw North property is sandwiched between the highway and the South Lake Commons PUD, which was recently approved for annexation and mixed-use development, including 1,850 homesites under contract to Lennar.

The Clont’s Corner and Olympus projects are immediately to the south.

The tract is being prepped to support up to 600 multifamily housing units and a maximum of 152,000 square feet of retail and office uses.

The owner/developer submitted a conceptual plan, also by SM&E, showing a 140-room hotel at the Schofield intersection and several commercial outparcels with up to 32,000 square feet of retail space fronting on U.S. 27.

The South Lake Crossing PUD designates the area adjacent to Bradshaw North as an Employment District entitled for a land use category that allows for a mix of offices, commercial and all types of residential development. The plan would cap the number of apartments at 350 units.

The 55-acre Clont’s Corner PUD is entitled for up to 600 multifamily housing units with a density of up to 12 units per acre and a maximum of 152,000 square feet of commercial uses.

Plans for Olympus call for up to 1,312 hotel rooms; 805 townhomes; 614 apartment units; 155,642 square feet of office space; 360,358 square feet of retail space and 345,283 square feet of medical office space that will feature spa services and holistic programs as well as centers that provide orthopedic injury diagnosis, rehabilitation services and physiology, nutrition and conditioning programs. The project is designed to be built out in five phases. A roughly 5,000-seat arena will anchor the project as part of the final phase.

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Earlier this year, Hanover Land Co. of Orlando paid $2.7 million for land south of the Olympus project with the intent to close a second deal next year giving it 152 acres for a 578-lot single-family home subdivision.

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at lkinsler@GrowthSpotter.com or (407) 420-6261, or tweet me at @LKinslerOGrowth. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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