More than two years after Osceola County commissioners adopted the NeoCity master plan, the county is taking a major step in realizing the vision for the 500-acre high-tech mixed-use district.
The county’s Development Review Committee approved a Preliminary Subdivision Plan that creates 366 individual parcels and formalizes the road network that divides the district into 48 distinct blocks. It also identifies the locations of trails, parks and open space.
“The preliminary subdivision plan is actually the first step and laying out a format for developing the property with dimensions and with real survey data,” Planning Director Kerry Godwin said. “And so one of the things we worked on was looking at a complete build out of the community and still having flexibility as we go forward.”
What it means is the county can begin actively marketing individual lots or entire city blocks in NeoCity to prospective buyers.
“It sets the stage for the transferring of property,” Godwin said. “The good thing about a subdivision plan is it provides engineering information so that an architect or engineer can start working on a site plan right away."
So a company like LG, which eyeing 30 acres in NeoCity for a “Smart City” with its own R&D offices and living laboratory, can stake out its property and start the design process. And hotel developer Riviera Point Development Group, which could partner with the county to develop a $40 million boutique hotel in NeoCity can reserve multiple lots across from the Central Park on the lakefront.
County planners and consulting engineer, Dewberry, followed the framework established in 2017 by the Perkins+Will master plan to a large degree. But there were some significant changes. The shape of the 100-acre lake and peninsula changed to accommodate the required water storage and retention for the region.
The location of Ethos Park Drive, which connects to E. Oak Street in the city of Kissimmee, was shifted north. Instead of a bridge extending from the peninsula, it now hugs the northern shore of the lake so it now provides connectivity with properties to the north.
One project that’s directly impacted is NeoSquare, a 292-unit apartment complex underway on E. Vine Street, across from the Valencia College Osceola Campus. The complex will have a quarter-mile of frontage on Ethos Park Drive overlooking the lake.
“Once that apartment complex goes in, there will be an internal road connection to Ethos Park Drive and NeoCity,” Godwin said. “So they’re right across the road from the lake. They’re going to have quite a view.”
The subdivision plan realigned NeoCity Way through the future Valencia Village mixed-use project, which will serve as a major gateway entrance across from Denn John Lane, and it provided on-street, parallel parking. All of the internal streets will be constructed with sidewalks, and the main roads will all have a 10-foot-wide paved bike trail in addition to the sidewalks. The bike trail also will completely encircle the lake.
Osceola County spokesman Mark Pino said the county has not contracted with a real estate broker to market the land in NeoCity. But that could be a next step after the PSP goes to the Board of County Commissioners in January.
“Currently, the county handles inquiries on a case-by-case basis,” Pino said.