Residential Property Developments

Controversial apartment development in Dr. Phillips moves forward

This is a building elevation of the proposed 5-story, 297-unit apartment complex proposed by Wood Partners as an expansion of The Rialto in the Dr. Phillips area.

Atlanta-based Wood Partners is moving forward with the second phase of its Dr. Phillips-area The Rialto apartments on Spring Lake.

The developer filed a Development Plan (DP) with Orange County last week for the five-story complex, with only minor changes from the proposal that generated enough neighborhood opposition last year for the developer to consider annexing into the City of Orlando.


Jim Hall, urban planner for VHB, Inc., told GrowthSpotter on Friday that the project is essentially the same, except that Wood Partners reduced the number of apartments to 297 from the original 325.

"We showed these plans all the way through the entitlement process, so the DP is consistent," Hall said. "The height of the building is the same. The orientation is the same. The connection to Rialto 1 is the same. It's all pretty much the same."

The five-story apartment buildings will wrap around three sides of the parking garage, as shown in this site plan.

The DP calls for a trio of mid-rise apartment buildings wrapped around a five-story, secured parking garage on three sides. The two smaller towers have courtyards, while the third features an amenity center and large, zero-entry pool.

In addition to VHB, the development team is composed of Charlan Brock Associates as architect and Mellich-Blenden Engineering, Inc.

Situated on 6.7 upland acres of a 23-acre parcel on the eastern shore of Spring Lake, the new development would lie northwest of the intersection of Sand Lake and Turkey Lake roads, and be built directly northeast of the first-phase of The Rialto (200 units).

A Wood Partners affiliate bought the site's two parcels totaling 24.31 acres in July 2015 for $26 million, and reached a school mitigation agreement with Orange County in November. Orange County Commissioners approved the Planned Development zoning revision in October that allowed the developer to change the use from commercial to high-density residential.

The expansion would be constructed in a single phase. The unit breakdown includes 196 one-bedroom units, 76 two-bedroom units and 25 three-bedroom units.

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