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Lake Wales
Friday, April 12, 2024

Nearly 77 Acres Approved for Future Development of Mixed-Use Neighborhood Through Zoning and Future Land Use Amendments

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by James Coulter

Approximately 76.95 acres of land located in northwest Lake Wales may soon provide residential housing for single and multi-family homes now that city commissioners have approved amendments to its zoning and future land use.

At their recent meeting on Tues. Feb 20, Lakes Wales City Commissioners voted to unanimously approve two ordinances that would amend the zoning and future land use designations to nearly 77 acres of land located north of Burns Avenue and west of Mammoth Grove Road/Buck Moore Road.

The first ordinance changed that land’s future land use designation from Low Density Residential (LDR) to Medium Density Residential. This change will allow the land’s proposed density to increase to 6.76 units per acre.

The second ordinance changed the land’s zoning designation to an R-3 Zoning Designation, which would permit a “mix of housing types and uses” on the property. This zoning change will permit the development to construct “single-family attached, single-family detached, multi-family, and support commercial” buildings.

According to the city staff memo: “The applicant has worked with City Planning Staff to design a mixed-use neighborhood, including a mix of both front-loaded and alley-loaded single-family homes and townhomes, multi-family, and a support commercial component.”

City commissioners motioned and seconded to approve both ordinances, which all passed through a unanimous roll call vote.

David Price, President of Bok Tower Gardens, approached the city commissioners in a public comment to request that some of the land within the 76.95 property be set aside for a potential trail.

Price claimed that a potential trail would be compatible with the Trails Program of the Department of Environmental Protections and could receive potential government funding.

“There is a proposed trail that will go onto Masterpiece Road and onto Burns Avenue. I ask that you consider leaving space between this development and Burns Avenue for a trail,” he said. “As we grow our city, we should allocate land for that because once we lose that land, we can never put a trail in there.”

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