Winter Haven-based Cassidy Organization is continuing its development spree with a land-use change request for 130 acres in Haines City.
Cassidy, with the help of Dennis Wood Engineering, is asking the city to approve a change to low density residential from agriculture to eventually build 585 single-family homes in a planned development.
The property, located at the intersection of Powerline Road and Baker Dairy Road, would be built out about 40% within the first five years, according to the Large Scale Land Use Amendment (LUPA) application. When fully built out, the neighborhood is estimated to increase Haines City’s population by approximately 1,831 people. The city’s 2019 population was reported at 25,091.
Cassidy’s planned development will add to the five single-family home communities representing about 1,200 units in various stages of planning within Haines City limits, planner April Brown told GrowthSpotter.
Cassidy is one of Polk County’s most prolific residential land developers. Cassidy currently is asking Polk County for a land-use change to build a 396-home subdivision on 88 acres between Davenport and Haines City.
“We’ve got a lot of development going on out in that area,” with most of the citrus groves being sold off, Brown said.
The development nearest to starting construction is Summerlin Groves, which is in final plat review. The 155-lot single-family residential community will be built by Winter Park-based The Keewin Real Property Company. The development on 45 acres will have an entrance off of Hinson and Johnson avenues.
Like Cassidy’s latest plan, Summerlin Groves and many of the new developments are replacing citrus groves that have been there for generations. About 81 of the 130 acres for Cassidy’s latest Haines City project were once part of the Congdon family citrus groves, according to property records. The land is made up of citrus groves, open pasture and has a barn on it.
Cassidy plans prepared by Dennis Wood show 13 acres of open space with 6.85 acres for required recreation area. The total acreage includes wetlands, making for 85 acres of impervious area and 45 acres of useable space.
Haines City planning commission is recommending approval of the land-use change, given that surrounding development is already residential or planned to be under a future land use plan.
The school board informed the commission that as of right now, it would have availability for the expected number of students that would come with Cassidy’s development.
Cassidy is also partnering with Highland Homes to seek an amendment to the 2025 Future Land Use Map for 112 acres in the City of Winter Heaven. The developer is seeking a change from Industrial to Residential-Low Density, and to assign Multi-family Residential- Low Density (R-3) zoning district on a portion of two parcels. The site can be accessed from 12th Street or 4th Street. It abuts the Florida’s Gateway industrial park and the 77.5-acre site the city agreed to sell last year to Florida Caribbean Distillers for a future canning plant.
Highland Cassidy has owned the land since 2006 and wants to build a single-family home subdivision with a maximum of 1,081 units but likely less than 560 with 5 dwelling units per acre, according to the application.
The request is scheduled to be heard by the Winter Haven planning commission June 16. Staff recommends approval.