Plans for a newly proposed multifamily development in Apopka are moving forward.
The city’s planning and zoning board on Wednesday approved a rezoning request sought by local developer Rafael Martinez, allowing the developer to advance on a proposed 126-unit garden-style apartment project called Monarchs at Lake Pleasant.
The multifamily community is being planned to rise at 1711 Apopka Blvd., on about 24 acres of land west of S. Lake Pleasant Road. The property is surrounded by areas that predominately feature low-density residential and agricultural uses.
A conceptual site plan for Monarchs at Lake Pleasant shows the apartment complex features seven, three-story apartment buildings that encircle amenities including a clubhouse, pool and large gazebo. A dog park is also included in the site plan.
Orlando-based Linn Engineering & Design is the assigned engineer.
The land consists of three parcels that Martinez bought in 2017 through the entity Radam Investment LLC. In total, he spent about $650,000 assembling the land. Last year, Martinez transferred ownership of the properties from Radam Investment LLC to Monarchs At Lake Pleasant LLC.
Chad Linn, president of Linn Engineering & Design, said the next step will be to present the site plan before Apopka’s city council. The developer hopes to be “out of the ground as soon as possible,” Linn said. He adds Martinez has experience developing several single-family lot subdivisions throughout Apopka.
In recent years, developers have gravitated toward the city thanks to its fast-growing population and the introduction of major roadways like the opening of the Kelly Park Road interchange — one of four interchanges opening in part of the $1.6 billion, 25-mile Wekiva Parkway project that will complete the beltway around northwest metropolitan Orlando.
The expressway was designed to provide an alternative to Interstate 4, and relieve U.S. 441, S.R. 46 and other roads with traffic congestion, but professionals in the industry say it’s also opening up a wealth of real estate opportunities.
Another major project planned in Apopka includes Benge Development’s approximately 100-acre mixed-use development northwest of the S.R 429 and S.R. 441 intersection.
President Tony Benge recently told GrowthSpotter the company has acquired about 85 percent of the land it needs to develop the mixed-use project, and expects to close on the remaining properties by November.
Plans include a mix of apartments, which will be developed by the Collier Companies of Gainesville, retail and restaurant space, a hotel and a new YMCA Family Center facility.