Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

DCA rejects massive development planned for Hernando

BROOKSVILLE — In a rare move, the Florida Department of Community Affairs has put Hernando County on notice Wednesday that it intends to find the proposed Quarry Preserve project "not in compliance.''

The County Commission approved a comprehensive plan change in September for the massive 4,282-acre project dubbed a "new town'' to be build on an old rock mine north of Brooksville.

The project was set to include up to 5,800 residential units of mixed types, 200 lodging units, an 850,000-square-foot business park, office space and public use areas grouped in a town center arrangement.

The DCA cited several problems with the project as presented.

While the developer Brooksville Quarry LLC tried to sell the "new town" concept to avoid a finding that the plan would create urban sprawl, the DCA concluded that "the amendment has not demonstrated that it is a new town'' for a variety of reasons.

The DCA also found that the method used to show that the project would fill a need was "professionally unacceptable.''

"The county is projected to need 30,897 dwelling units during the 2025 planning horizon. This could be accommodated by the current capacity of the county's comprehensive plan,'' wrote Mike McDaniel, chief of the office of comprehensive planning.

The DCA also concluded that the comprehensive plan amendment needed for the development was inconsistent with the objectives and policies of the comprehensive plan.

McDaniel recommends that the county revise the amendment to "demonstrate the characteristics of a new town.''

The notice is not a death blow for the project, said Tallahassee lawyer Jake Varn, who represented the developer. He plans to meet with DCA to see if the plan can be changed to satisfy the department's concerns.

Though he hadn't seen the department's letter, he correctly assumed one of the main objections was that the project would promote sprawl.

That means "we did not do enough to convince them that we are building a new town,'' Varn said.

If the developer can't reach an agreement with DCA, he said, the matter will go before an administrative law judge.

County Commissioner Dave Russell could not remember a noncompliance notice being issued for a major project in Hernando, and DCA Secretary Tom Pelham told the Times this week that the agency has approved 90 percent of the requests for comprehensive plan amendments it has received since 2007.

But Varn said noncompliance notices have become more common in recent years with Pelham in charge.

"It seems like we're always trying to get somebody out of a noncompliance,'' he said.

Barbara Behrendt can be reached at behrendt@sptimes.com or (352) 848-1434.

DCA rejects massive development planned for Hernando 10/27/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 27, 2010 8:01pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Trump, seething about attorney general, speculates about firing Sessions, sources say

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has spoken with advisers about firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions, as he continues to rage against Sessions' decision to recuse himself from all matters related to the Russia investigation.

  2. John McCain to return to Senate for health care vote

    WASHINGTON — The Senate plans to vote Tuesday to try to advance a sweeping rewrite of the nation's health-care laws with the last-minute arrival of Sen. John McCain — but tough talk from President Donald Trump won no new public support from skeptical GOP senators for the flagging effort that all but …

  3. Last orca calf born in captivity at a SeaWorld park dies

    Tourism

    ORLANDO — The last killer whale born in captivity under SeaWorld's former orca-breeding program died Monday at the company's San Antonio, Texas, park, SeaWorld said.

    Thet orca Takara helps guide her newborn, Kyara, to the water's surface at SeaWorld San Antonio in San Antonio, Texas, in April. Kyara was the final killer whale born under SeaWorld's former orca-breeding program. The Orlando-based company says 3-month-old Kyara died Monday. [Chris Gotshall/SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment via AP]
  4. Blake Snell steps up, but Rays lose to Orioles anyway (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Blake Snell stepped up when he had to Monday and delivered an impressive career-high seven-plus innings for the Rays. That it wasn't enough in what ended up a 5-0 loss to the Orioles that was their season-high fifth straight is symptomatic of the funk they are in right now.

    Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Tim Beckham (1) after being doubled off first on the liner by shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria (11) in to end the seventh inning of the game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Monday, July 24, 2017.
  5. A historic Tampa family saves a historic Tampa home built by an ancestor

    Human Interest

    The Knight family has replaced their roof and people are celebrating.

    The Peter O. Knight historical cottage, located in Tampa's Hyde Park neighborhood, is seen Thursday, July 20, 2017. The cottage fell into disrepair in recent years, but the Knight family stepped up with financial support to help stabilize the structure.