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Sovereign Properties sees June construction start for 710-unit garden-style apartments

Sovereign Properties is planning to build 710 apartments on the site outlined in red. It's one of five mulitfamily communities recently completed or planned on the stretch of County Road 532 between I-4 and Old Lake Wilson Road.
Sovereign Properties is planning to build 710 apartments on the site outlined in red. It's one of five mulitfamily communities recently completed or planned on the stretch of County Road 532 between I-4 and Old Lake Wilson Road. (DRMP)

The first phase of a 710-unit apartment complex on C.R. 532 and Old Lake Wilson Road is on schedule to start construction in early June as growth continues to pour into the Four Corners area of Polk County.

New York-based Sovereign Properties, bought the 92 acres in Davenport in August with plans to build 3-and 4-story apartments – some with elevators – in a luxury environment, Ryan Lang, Sovereign’s head of development and operations, told GrowthSpotter.

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“We’re going to make it very tropical. … We’re going to beef up amenities on this project,” Lang said. Those amenities will include a golf simulator; pet spa, 7,500 -square-foot club house with a large gym, fitness center and club room; outdoor grills and a luxury pool, said Lang and architect Ken Linehan of Winter Park-based Fugleberg Koch.

The land has been graded and is ready for construction as soon as the site plans and civil plans are approved – probably in April, Lang said. Phase I construction of 360 apartments is expected to take about 20 months. Phase 2 – another 350 apartments – should begin 18-20 months after completion of phase 1.

Construction is moving forward again on a luxury vacation townhome complex across from Reunion that had been stalled since last year.

Garden-style apartments offer “that maintenance-free lifestyle we find our renters really like,” Lang said.

Orlando-based Innovations Design Group will create the garden style as the landscape architect. Sovereign plans to start the general contractor bidding process in March, he said. Orlando-based DRMP Inc. is the engineer.

“I think our bread and butter is the garden style,” Lang said. “They are going to survive a recession. People are going to be flocking out of the high rises of the cities,” Lang said. “There’s housing needs everywhere. We aim to fill that gap.”

Lang said Sovereign chose to buy land in Polk County, instead of neighboring Osceola, because the land there is more affordable and the impact fees are substantially lower. The project is in the heart of the growing Reunion-ChampionsGate submarket. “We are believers in that area. I believe it’s a great area,” Lang said.

The company that built EOS apartments near UCF is putting down stakes in the ChampionsGate - Reunion submarket.

“532 I guess is a very good rental market,” Polk County planner Erik Peterson told GrowthSpotter. “As soon as we get one apartment complex up, another one comes in. They are doing awfully well.”

Among the apartment complexes in the area are recently completed Legacy Union Park and The Garrett Company’s Verso – a 240-unit gated community. Watermark Residential’s 326-unit complex called “Thrive by Watermark,” is under construction, and Atlanta-based Catalyst Development Partners is planning a 280-unit complex called Catalyst Reunion.

Fugleberg Koch has 1,800 apartment units in development within a 4-mile radius in including the Lake Wilson project, Linehan told GrowthSpotter. Among the other Polk County projects are in Dunson Park at 27 and I-4, a project in Reunion and two others that are under Non-Disclosure Agreements, Linehan said. The Old Lake Wilson property, to be named Sovereign at Town Center, has changed hands several times and most recently was approved for 347 townhomes and 116,228 feet of commercial development, Peterson said.

Details on the newest luxury apartment community planned for the Reunion-ChampionsGate submarket.

Sovereign Properties’ principal and CEO is Russ Krivor in Sunny Isles Beach. Since 2010, Krivor has developed nearly 5,000 apartments across five markets in the U.S. under various of his brands, according to Sovereign’s Web site.

Sovereign came in last year and amended the PD to allow for the apartments a future charter school on the approximately 9-acre outparcel in the community’s third phase. Lang said he still wants to build a charter school – that will be after completion of all the apartments. That parcel is still owned by FHC Development, which sold the first two phases to Sovereign.

FHC CEO Frank Cawthon told GrowthSpotter he plans to take it to market this summer. If Sovereign doesn’t buy it for the school, Cawthon said it would make an ideal retail site.

GrowthSpotter editor Laura Kinsler contributed to this report.

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

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