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Gated apartments could replace high-rise condos in New Port Richey

NEW PORT RICHEY — Nearly three years ago, the city annexed property slated for 500 high-rise condominiums, scoring big in efforts to pump up its general fund coffers.

Then the real estate market tanked, and developer Ryland Homes scrapped its plans. The nearly 30-acre property off Sea Forest Drive sat empty.

Now, Ryland wants to sell the property to another developer, with plans for a different kind of project: A 388-unit apartment complex.

Tonight, the City Council will consider approving a rezoning request and the new preliminary site plan. The meeting, the first of two required hearings on the issue, begins at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 5919 Main St.

Ryland wants to sell the property to Phoenix-based Alliance Residential, a national apartment builder that is moving into the Florida market. It has an office in Sarasota.

The gated apartment project would be called Broadstone Gulf Harbors and would feature efficiencies as well as units with one, two or three bedrooms.

Monthly rents would range from $800 to $1,270, according to information provided to the city. Amenities include a pool, clubhouse and trail.

Under Ryland's original condo plan, the six buildings would have been 85 feet high. By contrast, the plan for the apartments proposes 14 buildings that would be no greater than 45 feet tall.

Some city leaders in the past have complained that New Port Richey is home to too many rental units. But City Manager Tom O'Neill said Monday that this project is different.

"They have presented this as an upper-scale apartment complex," said O'Neill, "which we understand there's a good demand for."

Developers have told city officials that once they get their necessary approvals, they expect to start construction next year, O'Neill said.

Jodie Tillman can be reached at jtillman@sptimes.com or (727) 869-6247.

Gated apartments could replace high-rise condos in New Port Richey 10/06/08 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 8, 2008 7:57pm]

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