360-unit apartment complex proposed

Conceptual drawing of Pointe Grande Apartments

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Posted April 9, 2021 | By Ainslie Lee, ainslie@ocalagazette.com

Conceptual drawing of Pointe Grande Apartments

Facing stiff opposition from nearby residents, a plan to build a 360-unit apartment complex along Southwest 20th Street will come before the City of Ocala’s Planning and Zoning Commission on Monday.

The 35-acre property was approved for 116 homes in 2005. Now, the owners, listed as Williamson Linda Ann Trust and Hillpointe, LLC on paperwork filed with the city, seek approval for an apartment complex called Pointe Grande Apartments.

Plans call for 12 three-story apartment buildings. The conceptual plan for Pointe Grande also features a pool, clubhouse and 622 parking spaces.

The complex would be just off Southwest 20th Street across from the College of Central Florida’s campus and behind Paddock Villas, a deed-restricted apartment community.

Paul Worthman, a resident at Paddock Villas, worries that Southwest 20th Street, a two-lane road, can’t take the traffic Pointe Grande would bring.

“The entrance to the new community will be by my estimates less than 200 feet from the entrance to Paddock Villas and very close to the fire department,” Worthman wrote in an email to the Planning and Zoning Commission. “The proximity will exacerbate (an) already difficult situation of ingress and egress at peak driving times and potentially slow fire services due to added road congestion.”

Worthman also mentions the heavy traffic caused by nearby companies, including E-One, Cardinal Glass, Custom Windows and Signature Brands, which are all about two miles from the proposed development.

“I personally think it is time to step back from this until planning and roadway construction can be done to safely accommodate the current residents,” Worthman added to his email citing needs for sidewalks and lane expansion. “Moving forward with such a large residential project without some or all of these things will adversely affect many residents of Marion County and lower the quality of life for many.”

City staff recommends approval of the complex.

The issues will go before the commission on Monday at 5:30 p.m. The meeting is set for the city council chambers in city hall, 110 SE Watula Ave.

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