tbo: Tampa Bay Online.
Saturday, May 27, 2017

Walden Lake golf course owner drops adult living facility from development plans

PLANT CITY — The owner of a shuttered Walden Lake golf course is dropping a 90,000-square-foot adult congregate living facility from development plans.

Visions Golf Managing Partner Steve Mercer said his company gave up on the plans after considering the comments of concerned residents and getting a negative reaction from county planners, who said it would not be compatible with the neighborhood.

Mercer said Visions Golf will instead build up to 60 multifamily homes on the 10.4 acres where the adult congregate living facility would have been built.

Visions Golf is asking the city to rezone a total of 127 acres, including much of the closed 18-hole course known as The Hills. Initial plans to build as many as 740 homes on the property met with opposition from many residents and several government agencies.

In February, Visions Golf submitted scaled back plans and recently said it would consider multifamily housing as an alternate to the adult living facility.

Including the 60 multifamily homes proposed for the former adult living facility site, Visions Golf now proposes a total of 362 units, including 216 multifamily units and 146 single-family homes.

The revised plans had already met with a more favorable response from government agencies.

The county’s environmental department said in a report that it has no opposition to the revised plans, subject to some conditions already agreed upon by the applicant. County planner Jay Collins expressed concerns over the adult congregate living facility, but found nothing objectionable about the multifamily housing. School board officials also said area schools have enough capacity for the extra students who would live in the proposed development.

The city planning board is scheduled to hold a public hearing on the rezoning petition at 6 p.m. June 16 at the John R. Trinkle Center on Hillsborough Community College’s Plant City campus, 1206 N. Park Road. The city commissioners, who have the final say, would likely consider the proposal about 60 days later, city Planning and Zoning Director Mark Hudson said.

Twitter: @dnicholsonTBO

dnicholson@tampatrib.com

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