Longleaf developer teams up with Unicorp for phase two of its $110M project

Orlando-based Project Finance & Development has teamed up with Chuck Whittall's Unicorp National Developments Inc. for phase two of its $110 million mixed-use Longleaf at Oakland project.

Plans for the second phase call for 364 units consisting of 280 apartments and 84 adult-only apartments, which will be targeted to seniors, Dwight Saathoff, president of PF&D, said on Monday.


The nearly 16-acre site sits on the northeast corner of Florida's Turnpike and Highway 50, along Oakland Avenue. "That's just a 10 minute bicycle ride from downtown Winter Garden," Saathoff said.

The land sold for $5 million in 2017 as part of a larger 58-acre assemblage of land previously owned by the Florida Department of Transportation.

PF&D tapped homebuilder Pulte Homes for the first phase of the project — 84 single-family homes and 100 townhomes. Prices for the residences start in the $300,000 range. The developer broke ground on the project about a year ago.

Saathoff said the second phase of Longleaf at Oakland will feature four-story buildings inspired architecturally by Henry Flagler's early 20th century Florida hotels. He pointed to the Grand Floridian hotel at Walt Disney World as a comparison. Slocum Platts is the architect.

Saathoff adds he wants to equip the senior living units with elevators, indirect lighting and adjustable-height shower heads with hand-held wands. He said amenities at Longleaf would be similar to the joint venture's Venetian Isle project, which features a pool, fitness center, fireplaces and a dog park. Longleaf at Oakland will also have a bicycle shop, Saathoff said.

Construction is expected to begin in the spring. S&ME, Inc. is the engineer.

In part of the project's design, a new trail spur on the West Orange Trail, which weaves along the property's northern boundary, was added. The developer also invested $250,000 to preserve and refurbish the historic black cemeteries that lie on the southern boundary.

It's joint venture partner, Unicorp, is behind a number of high-profile developments in Central Florida, including the I-Drive 360 development known for the ICON Orlando and Starflyer attractions and its most recent $1 billion mixed-use undertaking — O-Town West.

Plans for the project near Walt Disney World include more than 1,800 luxury apartments, a 250,000-square-foot retail and entertainment center and up to 200,000 square feet of new office space. A roller coaster attraction is also in the works.

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