Polk County Developments

Developer downzoning apartment sites in Haines City for single family

A developer based in Celebration is working with Haines City to downzone two sites that had been approved for more than 2,000 apartments for single family homes.

Both sites on across 30th Street from Haines City Senior High School and straddle Robinson Drive, which will be paved by the developer.


David Waronker, president of CBD Real Estate Investment LLC, told GrowthSpotter he acquired the properties and had intended to develop multifamily there because the sites were so close to a planned cloverleaf interchange for the future 6-lane Polk Parkway Extension.

"It would have been a slam dunk," Waronker said. "We had planned on bringing these to market as multifamily sites, but the parkway extension has been delayed for so long, I just couldn't keep sitting on it. I have to follow the market, and there's demand for single family. It'll still be great, but it would have been great as apartment sites, too."


CBD has designed the property as two separate communities, north and south of Robinson. Waronker is seeking to reduce the entitlements on the 80 acres north of the road from 1,152 apartments to 297 lots, all 50-feet wide. CBD is providing 3.7-acres of recreation space divided among four park sites.

CBD  paid $2.1 million for the 69 acres south of Robinson that had an MPUD for 900 apartments. Zephyrhills-based Cornelison Engineering has designed a 256-lot subdivision called Covered Bridge at Liberty Bluff. These lot sizes will be slightly larger, 52 x 110 feet, and the community will have a special feature on its main interior road.

"It's going to have a water feature with a covered bridge," Waronker said. "I suspect it will be under construction by the end of April, and we'll sell it as a developed site to a national homebuilder."

CBD is currently negotiating with several builders for the Bonnies Landing site, which would trail Liberty Bluff's construction schedule by about a month. Both projects would be developed and delivered on one phase and will be coordinated with the paving of Robinson.

The project is bounded on the south by Roe Road and abuts Tarpon Bay, a 361-lot subdivision now in development by Feltrim Group and under contract to D.R. Horton.

Cassidy Organization, a Winter Haven-based land developer, owns the 50 acres abutting Bonnies Landing to the north.

These are just two of the several active projects CBD has going now in Polk County. The firm is also developing a 134-lot subdivision -- Berkley Ranch -- in Auburndale and will sell it later this month to Highland Homes, Waronker said.

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