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Friday, April 12, 2024

64 New Homes May Come to Lake Wales Now That City Commission Approved First Reading of Residential PDP

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64 New Homes May Come to Lake Wales Now That City Commission Approved First Reading of Residential PDP

by James Coulter

Nearly 64 new residential units may be built in Lake Wales now that the City Commission has approved the first reading of a special use permit approval for a residential planned development project (PDP).

At their meeting on Tuesday evening, Lake Wales City Commissioners voted unanimously to approve the first reading of an ordinance for a 64-unit preliminary subdivision plat and a special exception use permit for a residential PDP.

The proposed subdivision plat is planned to be constructed on approximately 9 acres of land south of Burns Avenue, east of Wales Drive North, and north of Hillside Avenue.

The site is situated at the end of 7th Street North with, as the city memo explains, a “significant slope creating a vista towards the southwest. The plat will include 64 residential units, which includes 57 townhome units and single-family lots.

“The property currently has a land use designation Low-Density Residential (LDR), which allows for 5 units per acre,” the city memo for the ordinance states.

However, through the approval of the special use permit, the property will be permitted to have, “a density of 12 units per acre, giving them a maximum of 101 units; they are proposing 64 units for a density of 6.78 units per acre.”

If approved, the proposed residential PDP could generate, according to the city memo, “an average of $200,000 in taxable value per unit, it could potentially result in over $12.8 million in taxable value, and generate a little over $81,000 in ad valorem taxes.” Both the city staff and planning and zoning board had recommended its approval.

Lake Wales City Commissioners have been approving several proposed residential PDPs within the past month. At their meeting on Jul. 5, they approved a PDP that will build 300 new single-family homes on approximately 29.94 acres of land south and west of Old Scenic Highway and east of Scenic Highway North. Likewise, they approved another PDP for 67 single-family units to be built on 8.66 acres of land south of Passion Play Road and west of 11th Street South.

Polk County is the fastest-growing county in Florida and the seventh fastest-growing in the nation, according to a two-year study by the GiveWell Community Foundation and United Way of Central Florida. The study finds that the county’s total population is expected to increase by over 20 percent by 2030.

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