At the March 22nd, Joint Workshop on the 2022 Cycle Comprehensive Plan Amendments, elected officials heard about a proposal that could result in the development of approximately 460 acres on the southside of Leon County by D.R. Horton, a national homebuilder.
D.R. Horton is based in Arlington, Texas and operates in 44 of homebuilding’s top 50 markets in the U.S.
The company has a presence in Wakulla County where it has developed Chadwick Estates . The neighborhood is located along Wakulla Arran Road and approximately 2.2 Miles from Hwy 319.
The workshop is one of the first steps in a process that will include public hearings and votes by elected officials related to the proposals.
During the workshop, elected officials highlighted the positives related to the proposal which included addressing the need for more housing options and the southside location of the development.
Leon County Commissioner Brian Welch noted “we do not have enough housing, there is not enough dirt.”
City Commissioner Curtis Richardson commented on the housing crisis and said, “we are growing….how we grow is what we determine…we need to bring more properties inside the Urban Services Area.”
Leon County Commissioner Jimbo Jackson said that “it is great to see something come to the southwest.”
There were also concerns mentioned about possible problems related to traffic issues and urban sprawl.
Leon County Commissioner Kristin Dozier said she was concerned about how the April Road project would impact traffic patterns in the area.
City Commissioner Jeremy Matlow voiced concern about the repeated expansion of the Urban Services Area (USA).
Matlow said, “I think we can’t continue to expand the Urban Services Area…we do not have enough money to provide service to sprawling neighborhoods.”
Comp Plan Changes
The changes requested by the developer include extending the Urban Services Area (USA) and changing zoning designations. The changes requested are related to three parcels.
The April Road designated parcel is approximately 173 acres of land at the northeast corner of Old St. Augustine Road and April Road. The proposed zoning changes would allow low-density residential development at 3.63 dwelling units per acre.
The proposed zoning allows townhouses, single family detached homes, two-family homes, and apartments as well as open space/recreation and community facilities related to residential use from 4-20 dwelling units per acre.
The Woodville Highway parcel is approximately 154 acres of land southeast of the intersection at Capital Circle and Woodville Highway and The Southwood Planation parcel is approximately 130 acres of land between Apalachee Parkway and Old St. Augustine Rd, east of Southwood Plantation.
The zoning request for these two parcels will allow low density residential development at a density up to eight dwelling units per acre and a mixture of office, commercial uses, and residential densities up to 20 units per acre.
The next step in the process is for planning officials to gather Information requested during the workshop and address any outstanding questions and concerns at public hearings scheduled for April 12 and June 14.