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The Villages
Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Wildwood mayor raises concerns about commercial project on Marsh Bend Trail

Mayor Ed Wolf
Mayor Ed Wolf

In a rare rejection, Wildwood commissioners voted 3-2 Monday night against a proposed commercial project along Marsh Bend Trail.

The failure of the comprehensive plan amendment came after Mayor Ed Wolf expressed concerns about the development and staff members disagreed about whether it should be approved.

The proposed amendment called for designating the nearly five-acre site for general commercial instead of agriculture. The property is nearly a mile south of Warm Springs Avenue and near Villages of Southern Oaks neighborhoods.

Along with a zoning change, the amendment was recommended for approval by Special Magistrate Lindsay C.T. Holt and city planners. The zoning change was rendered moot when the amendment failed.

City Manager Jason McHugh, who also has a planning background, said he disagreed with the planners because the general commercial zoning would allow any type of project from storage lockers to a convenience store.

The owner, Thomas Group Investments #1 of Gainesville, did not indicate what type of commercial development is planned for the property, except that it would serve adjacent neighborhoods.

Wolf said the property originally was part of a planned unit development that included housing and that it would have been better to approve it as part of the larger project. Now, he said, it would be next to homes.

Favoring the amendment were commissioners Joe Elliot and Julian Green. Opposing it were Wolf, Pamala Harrison-Bivens and Marco Flores.


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