Tavistock fine-tunes zoning on 369 acres near USTA for commercial & new homes

Bob Moser

Plans filed by Tavistock Development Company with the City of Orlando last week clarify how it may develop 369.49 acres in Lake Nona around its USTA National Campus, with a mix of commercial, hotels, an 11-acre Crystal Lagoon and residential linked by a new road to the Lake Nona Golf & Country Club.

The properties, dubbed Parcels 9 and 10 on planning documents, lie north of Lake Nona Boulevard, south of Lake Nona, east of the airport and west of Red Lake. 

More than 166 acres south of the tennis campus are labeled for Commercial use, which could feature a range of business development types, including some of the 2,250 hospitality room entitlements available within the PD zoning. 

The other 203 acres east of the campus are pegged for an 11-acre Crystal Lagoon, a potential resort hotel adjacent, and a gated "Residential" area that would expand the country club estates with a mix of condominiums and single-family homes. 

Connecting those homes to the Lake Nona Golf & Country Club will be an extension of Cromwell Road, to branch southwest from the gated community. The road would be built over a land bridge between Nona and Red lakes, new plans show. 

Tavistock is asking the city to amend the property's PD, modifying the acreage for each type of use, which sets the stage for development choices to be made in the coming months, spokeswoman Jessi Blakley said Wednesday.

In July, the Army Corps of Engineers division in Cocoa approved a Tavistock request to change its existing permit for the Lake Nona Central project site. 

That includes reducing the area of wetland and upland available for mitigation to accommodate the 11-acre Crystal Lagoon, which would stand 8 foot deep. It would serve both the publicly accessible resort hotel and private residential condominium, according to Army Corps documents. 

Changes Tavistock is making to the undeveloped area will result in a total functional wetland loss of 4.96 FCDs (Functional Capacity Debits). That's a term from the federal mitigation bank rule which means the degree to which a wetland performs a specific function, with "debit" being the loss through fill. 

That loss will be compensated by Tavistock purchasing 1.4 federal palustrine credits from the Crosby Island Marsh Mitigation Bank, and activating mitigation within the Lake Nona Central, Lake Nona South and Poitras conservation areas that were previously identified for mitigation use. 

At 11 acres in size, Tavistock's Crystal Lagoon won't be the largest in Florida. That distinction will go to a 14-acre lagoon planned for a mixed-use development in St. John's County named Twin Creeks, where the lagoon will serve as central amenity to more than 1,000 single-family homes and 150,000 square feet of waterfront dining and retail, said Uri Man, CEO of Crystal Lagoons USA.

The largest announced in the U.S. so far is by Wynn Resorts, to replace its Wynn golf course in Las Vegas with a 38-acre lagoon. The company's largest lagoon in the world is 98.8 acres in Dubai.

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at bmoser@growthspotter.com, (407) 420-5685 or @bobmoser333. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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