Despite opposition from Oxford Oaks residents, new Special Magistrate Lindsay C.T. Holt Tuesday recommended approval of a planning map amendment and zoning change for the Oxford Village RV Resort at meetings of the Wildwood Planning and Zoning Board.
The resort, planned south of County Road 466 and west of U.S. 301 along the northern boundary of the Oxford Oaks neighborhood, would have 244 camp sites that would be occupied from about Oct. 1 to March 31 each year, according to a co-owner.
The plan amendment and zoning change would alter the land designation for the 10-acre site from agriculture to commercial. The Wildwood City Commission likely will consider Holt’s recommendations later this month.
Steven Jennings, one of the resort owners, said the project should not be confused with a KOA-type campground.
“We plan on putting in a destination-type park,” he told Holt. “This is not a one-day, in-and-out park.”
He said most RV owners would have long-term stays at the resort throughout the winter season and his customers would bring a lot of money to the area.
But residents of Oxford Oaks raised concerns.
“I feel our home values are going to plummet,” said Lisa Bufkin, adding that the resort would be about 20 feet from her property.
She the park isn’t a good fit with her neighborhood.
Nancy Chretien, who lives in The Villages but owns property in Oxford Oaks, said she owns an RV, but is opposed to the resort because it will increase traffic, possibly harm the environment and require additional police protection.
“The traffic terrifies me,” she said. “An RV park should be farther away from residential areas. It’s going to be a negative impact.”
A traffic impact analysis by Kimley-Horn & Associates Inc. estimated the site would generate 490 new daily trips and recommended no external transportation improvements. The developer may be required to relocate gopher tortoises because burrows were found on the property.
The meeting was Holt’s first as special magistrate after a contract with her was approved at a special Wildwood City Commission meeting on Tuesday morning.
A 2007 graduate of the Stetson University College of Law, where she received her Juris Doctorate, Holt is a partner at the Crawford, Modica & Holt law firm in Tavares. Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, she is a Leesburg High School graduate.
She replaces W. Grant Watson, a Mount Dora attorney who resigned after serving as the city’s special magistrate since late 2017.