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The Villages
Saturday, January 15, 2022

Villager makes passionate plea as 10,000 more cars per day to flood Cherry Lake Road

A Villager is making a passionate plea to the Lady Lake Commission as a massive new development will bring 10,000 more additional vehicles per day to the roadway behind her home.

Cherry Lake Road serves as the dividing line between Lake and Sumter counties.

Nancy Jordan Blackmore

Nancy Jordan Blackmore lives in the Village of Caroline and her home backs up to Cherry Lake Road. She and her husband purchased their home in 2006 and have been its first and only owners. They added on in 2013 and have made other improvements to their “forever home.”

As traffic on Cherry Lake Road has steadily increased through the years, they’ve been forced to live with speeders and the trash they discard. She points to the death of a 21-year-old man who lost control of his pickup and crashed into the side of a church in 2020 on Cherry Lake Road.

“We have school buses speeding, people in the morning, nighttime occasional ‘let’s see what this baby will do’ and crotch rockets love this road,” said Blackmore.

A driver was killed in 2020 when his vehicle crashed into a church on Cherry Lake Road.

A developer will close on the Meucci property this week and the 421 acres of pastureland south of County Road 466 and east of Cherry Lake Road will be transformed into housing and retail. It will be married by the developer of the project with an additional 150 acres known as the Hill property.

Mohammed Abdallah
Mohammed Abdallah

Mohammed Abdallah of Traffic Mobility Consultants, hired by the developer of the massive project, at Monday night’s Lady Lake Commission, tried to soothe the fears of Blackmore and others who will be the new neighbors of the development.

“The traffic that is using the roadways is not connected to the vacant land,” he said.

He described the notorious traffic on Rolling Acres Road, Lake Ella Road, Micro Racetrack Road and Cherry Lake Road as motorists trying to maneuver around less desirable driving options. He said the “country feel” of the roads lures drivers who believe they can make better time and abuse the speed limit.

Lady Lake commissioners on Monday reviewed the traffic on Cherry Lake Road and around the proposed development
Lady Lake commissioners on Monday reviewed the projected traffic on Cherry Lake Road and around the proposed development.

He said the development, with the addition of housing and retail, could make those roads less desirable to “cut through” traffic.

Abdallah added that the development will bring improvements to Cherry Lake Road, including some widening and the addition of turn lanes.

“We will be improving the conditions at the access points,” Abdallah said.

The development will include a gated community for 55+. The gated community will have card-access at two points – one on Cherry Lake Road and one on Rolling Acres Road. The housing will reportedly be “upscale.” You can see details of the development at this link: 2021-25-Conceptual-Plan

There will also be “market rate” housing for working families. It will include town homes and apartments.

Blackmore opened her remarks before the commission with a prayer for “good neighbors.” She described the property owner, “Mr. Hill,” as a good neighbor.

She clearly has doubts about the details from the traffic study offered by the developer’s representative. And because she is a resident of Sumter County – and not Lady Lake or Lake County – it was not clear how much sway Blackmore’s plea had with the commission.

“I don’t have a traffic study, but I live there and I live it,” she said.

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