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Residential Property Developments

Lennar, Toll Brothers, McCraney hop onto Centerline’s recently established CDD in Apopka

Centerline Capital Advisors wants add recreational amenities to a lake within The Ridge at Lake Bronson master-planned community.

Lennar Homes, Toll Brothers and commercial developer McCraney Property Company will be part of a newly established Community Development District in Apopka.

Property records show the developers are buying into The Ridge at Apopka CDD, which stretches approximately 400 acres just north of the intersection of the Western Beltway (State Road 429) and State Road 414, between Binion Road and Ocoee Apopka Road.

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The City of Apopka enacted an ordinance establishing the special taxing district back in August. Its master developer Centerline Capital Advisors led the initiative to create the CDD.

Brian Perry, marketing and lease-up director at CCA, told GrowthSpotter they expect the CDD to be in place around mid-April.

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“All these reports about growth coming up recently from analytics by Redfin or CoStar, of the sort, they all have the Tampa and the Orlando submarkets pegged as the fastest-growing cities in the nation. And Apopka, we think, is prime for growth and prime for a boom, and we’re excited to be a part of it,” he said.

The Ridge at Lake Bronson master-planned community is entitled for up to 683 residential homes, 678 apartments, 350,000 square feet of commercial/office space, and 1.5 million square feet of industrial uses.

Toll Brothers is the first and only developer to buy into the community, so far. Lennar and McCraney are under contract to buy into the community at a later time. Perry said CCA has not yet executed contracts with developers for the parcels within the CDD that are dedicated to multifamily use and commercial uses.

Last month, through an arrangement with the land banking company DW Partners, Toll Brothers took control of about 80 acres north of Boy Scout Road with plans to build 313 residential homes.

The New York-based debt strategy firm is using the affiliated company, DRP FL 5 LLC, to hold the lots for resale. Records show in December DRP FL 5 LLC paid $13 million for the property, known as Parcel 2 within The Ridge Major Development Plan.

Toll Brothers intends to build 60 bungalow homes, 95 rear-loaded townhomes and 158 single-family homes on a mix of 55-foot and 60-foot wide lots. Toll Brothers Division President Brock Fanning said the community will feature a clubhouse, resort-style pool, tot lot, parks, and a community trail that will connect to a recreational area by a large central lake.

The residential development would be Toll Brothers’ second in Apopka. The homebuilder is currently selling and building homes at its 124-unit Oaks at Kelly Park single-family home community on Park Ridge Street and Kelly Park Road, in the city’s Kelly Park Interchange District. The community will feature home designs ranging from 1,917 square feet to over 3,300 square feet across of mix of one-and two-story single-family homes with front porches.

DW Partners and Toll Brothers are also working together on the 368-lot Westhaven at Ovation community in Horizon West. Last year, DW Partners paid $14.76 million for 136 acres through a similar land-banking arrangement with the homebuilder. The community is located around Lake Gifford, on the northeast corner of Avalon Road and Hartzog Road.

In March, GrowthSpotter first reported that Centerline had begun assembling the property and had applied for a Planned Development zoning known as the Ridge PD on about 365 acres within the CDD. The MDP was approved by the Apopka city council in October.

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In its entirety, the Ridge PD is entitled for up to 683 residential homes, 678 apartments, 350,000 square feet of commercial/office space, and 1.5 million square feet of industrial uses. The special taxing district will assist in the financing of the community’s infrastructure and off-site improvements including off-site roadway, intersection and utility improvements.

Lennar Homes is under contract to purchase Parcel 4, located south of Boy Scout Road within the MDP, and will likely build the remaining 370 lots allowed in the PD. A representative with Lennar did not respond to a request for comment.

The community wouldn’t be its first in Apopka. Recently the homebuilder paid $3.15 million for about 35 acres of agricultural land at 4550 Golden Gem Rd. with plans to develop 165 single-family, solar-powered homes.

Lennar was listed in an agreement with CCA as a developer within the Ridge CDD along with McCraney Property Company.

Under contract with McCraney Property Co. are 78.2 acres on the southwest portion of the CDD. The commercial developer is seeking to build about 1.26 million square feet of industrial space across five warehouse buildings, according to a submitted site plan.

The first phase for the industrial project consists of developing two sister facilities that span 146,904 square feet each. Phase 2 features a 116,323-square-foot industrial building. Phase 3 and Phase 4 each feature the largest warehouses. The industrial facility part of the third phase spans 423,365 square feet and the building in the final fourth phase spans 428,414 square feet.

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McCraney Property Co. assigned Smiley & Associates as the civil engineer and C4 Architecture is the architect.

VHB is the civil engineer working with CCA on the Ridge PD and Tom Sullivan with GrayRobinson worked as their land use attorney.

Perry said CCA hopes to activate the rural property, once part of a large citrus tree farm operation owned by the Bronson family.

“We want to preserve Mr. Bronson’s legacy,” he said. Part of that effort includes activating some of the natural resources on the property. Perry said CCA plans to build a lakehouse and grilling areas around a large central lake within the CDD.

CCA is a family-run real estate company based in South Florida that specializes in acquisition, development, and entitlement services.

In Osceola County, the company is in the pre-construction phase of its large Bella Tera master-planned community slated to feature more than 1,900 residential dwelling units on about 660 acres that stretch from Kissimmee Park Road to Lake Toho, next to BTI Partners’ Crossprairie community.

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Plans call for a mix of single-family homes, apartments, purpose-built rental homes, and townhomes. In addition, the proposed plans feature the potential for a school site and two neighborhood centers, including one that could include boating access to Lake Toho.

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at arabines@GrowthSpotter.com or (407) 491-3357, or tweet me at @amanda_rabines. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.


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