Newberry to consider 272 ag acres for 1,000 homes

The Newberry Planning and Zoning Board will consider an application to convert 272 acres along West Newberry Road from agriculture to a planned development for 1,000 homes, commercial, and mixed-use purposes.

The board was set to discuss the application on Monday night but due to concerns about an agenda with 17 items taking too long to get through, the applicant offered to move the item to the February meeting.

The zoning and land use change requests were submitted by Gainesville-based planning consultants Causseaux, Hewett, and Walpole, INC. (CHW).

The application submitted by CHW asks to change the Future Land Use Map classification on the 272 acres from Agriculture to Planned Development on behalf of property owner Glaeser Tract Investment, LLC.

Three parcels located north of West Newberry Road/State Road 26 and west of NW 202nd Street are identified by Alachua County Parcel Numbers 01920-000-000, 01920-001-000, 01920-002-000, 01920-002-001, and 01920-003-000.

The application also requests a zoning change from Agricultural (A) to Planned Development (PD) as it proposes a “mix of both commercial and residential uses, intended to complement each other and surrounding properties,” which it states is, “consistent with uses permitted by the City’s Comprehensive Plan for the Planned Development Future Land Use classification.”

A description of the PD on the application states the development will be “neighborhood-scale commercial uses along with multifamily residential uses are proposed along the SR 26 frontage, while the site’s remainder will be a single family detached subdivision.”

The applicant explains that the requested Future Land Use change to PD is, “consistent with Future Land Use Element Goal I.6 which states, ‘In recognition of community vision for Newberry to enhance the quality of life in the city, direct development to urban service areas which have in place, or have agreements to provide, service capacity to accommodate growth in a financially feasible and an environmentally acceptable manner.”

Newberry Planning staff stated in meeting backup documents that it, “has reviewed and concurs with the data and analysis regarding consistency with the Comprehensive Plan, concurrency/level of service impact for City of Newberry potable water and sanitary sewer, Clay Electric Co-Op electric services, City, County, and State roadways, and educational and recreational facilities provided in the applicant’s Justification Report.

“In addition, staff supports the included analysis of urban sprawl (163.3164(51), Florida Statutes) which documents that the proposed Future Land Use change does not create urban sprawl, and instead helps to discourage urban sprawl within the City and unincorporated Alachua County.”

If approved in February, and then by the Newberry City Commission, the PD known as the SAPP Planned Development will allocate 194 acres as residential area, 11 acres for commercial use, 25 acres for mixed-use areas, and 43 acres as common areas or open spaces.

The PD would allow a maximum total of 780 single-family homes and 260 multi-family units which would be phased over a 20-year period with an average of 50 new homes per year, according to the application.

The plan also calls for up to 80,000 square feet of general office area and 160,000 square feet of commercial/retail space.

The City of Newberry continues to move forward on developments that have been in the works for decades, Mayor Jordan Marlowe said this summer after the city annexed dozens of properties.

Slated developments already underway or soon to be in Newberry include Treehouse Village RV Resort with 850 sites, Avalon Woods with 260 single-family homes, Venco Mixed Used development with 500 residential units, Oak Park with 114 residential units, ARC 55 and older community with 900 residential units, CR 337 development with 270 residential units, Country Way Town Center with 365 residential units, Newberry Ridge with 999 residential units and Sandia Town Park with 1,400 residential units, sports arenas, plus a future bowling alley, movie theater and light industrial units.

“If every single one came online tomorrow, we’d still have capacity at our wastewater plant right now,” Marlowe said.

The Newberry City Commission also rezoned 18.48 acres of agricutral property into commercial intenstive on the opposite side of Newberry Road on Oct. 25 as they continue to fill in the urban boundary. 

In a recent meeting Newberry City Commissioner Ricky Coleman said he was concerned about local schools keeping up with the increase in population as the developments move forward.

Marlowe assured him that the school district is made aware of projected population increases.

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