Unicorp National Developments gained steam Wednesday on a planned January groundbreaking for its Westside Shoppes development in southwest Orange County, earning Development Review Committee recommendation on two key requests before a Board of County Commissioners hearing set for Sept. 15.
Unicorp asked to subdivide the 117-acre property into six lots, which will facilitate development early next year of a new 70,700-square-foot neighborhood retail complex, which will neighbor the 302-unit Venetian Isle Apartments and 44 single-family attached townhouses.
National home builder Meritage Homes will buy roughly 30 acres of the property to build 151 single-family homes, and Unicorp will dedicate about 30 acres of the property to Orange County for future construction of a middle school.
The developer also requested DRC approval to construct 48,482 square feet of Commercial Village Center uses within five buildings on 9.43 acres, the first phase of the 70,700-square-foot Westside Shoppes. Both requests were recommended for approval, with a BCC hearing to follow on Sept. 15.
Located at the corner of Winter Garden Vineland Road and Reams Road in the county's Horizons West master-planned community, the 117 total acres known as North of Alberts is currently owned by Fran Pignone, a former county commissioner. Chuck Whittall, Unicorp CEO, expects to close the sale this fall.
Nearly 100 percent of the retail space at Westside Shoppes has been reserved for tenants, Whittall told GrowthSpotter in May.