A group of Orlando-area investors who bought 50 acres of vacant land just off State Road 46 in Mount Dora back in 2006 are now seeking final approvals to build a 101-home subdivision.
Orlando-broker Roger Soderstrom Jr. represents the ownership group, which filed construction plans this month with St. Johns River Water Management District for the project, known as Wekiva Ridge. The project received preliminary plat approval from the City of Mount Dora but has not submitted a final plat.
City Planner Shelby Eldridge told GrowthSpotter the owners elected to go with a straight zoning approach using the R-1 zoning, which requires a minimum 70-foot lot width, rather than rezoning to a Planned Unit Development. The majority of lots in the subdivision are 75 feet wide and 115 feet deep, while corner lots are either 80 or 85 feet wide.
“It’s true to what we originally planned,” investment partner Hugh Harling told GrowthSpotter. He said the city’s Wolf Branch Innovation District, which has specific design standards, “has upgraded everything.”
The plan calls for ample green space and trails. Harling said the future homebuilder would determine whether to build a community pool or other hard amenities. KB Home and Hanover Family Builders were previously under contract for the development. But Harling said now it is back on the market.
The site plan by Suncoast Engineering reserves a 2.17-acre lot on S.R. 46 for future commercial development and also dedicates a 70-foot right-of-way for a future east-west road that will connect Niles and Round Lake roads. “The idea is to keep traffic flowing on S.R. 46,” Harling said. The connector road provide cross access to D.R. Horton’s Timberwalk community, which is immediately to the east of Wekiva Ridge.
D.R. Horton has filed Final Construction Plans with the city for the 376-home subdivision. The community would be developed in two phases and would have three lot sizes. The plans call for 247 55-foot wide lots, 72 60-foot lots and 57 of the 70-foot lots. The plans also include various amenities: a pool and cabana, two playgrounds and a pair of dry retention areas that function as multi-purpose fields.
Park Square Homes is also in the final permitting stages for the Phase 4 of Summerbrooke, which is across Niles Road and entitled for 166 additional lots.
The Wolf Branch Innovation District was conceived in 2004 by a partnership between Lake County and the city of Mount Dora as a means to bring high-paying jobs and new housing to a region being activated by the construction of S.R. 453 (Wekiva Parkway) and expansion of S.R. 46.
Original plans called for creating an employment district that spanned 1,300 acres in unincorporated Lake County, but officials in both municipalities amended the plan to span 850 acres to ensure commercial developers target key areas that will support long-term commercial growth.