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PHOTO/FLYING CAT DRONEWORKS, ANTHONY DeFEO CHANGE IS COMING —Trees line both sides of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Beltway on the east side of DeLand. The crossing shown is the future intersection of the beltway with an eastward extension of Beresford Avenue. Supporters of Cresswind say the development will help bring about that extension, long planned and needed to relieve traffic congestion in the area. 

The DeLand City Commission approved two plats — one preliminary and one final — for housing developments at a regular meeting Aug. 16.

The commission OK’d a preliminary plat for Arlington Heights, a proposed 9.43-acre subdivision with 35 single-family units at the southeast corner of Voorhis Avenue and Pine Street.

The 35 homes would sit on lots ranging from 60 to 75 feet in width. While not connected, Arlington Heights would be just north of Beresford Reserve’s — the controversial development proposed for the former Southridge Golf Course — northern parcel along Euclid Avenue.

Some members of the City Commission took issue with aspects of the project’s design, like the 12 units with driveways that empty onto either Voorhis Avenue or Pine Street, but the landowner, Voorhis Partners LLC, is not seeking a planned development, or PD, zoning with the project. Instead, the Voorhis Avenue infill project would put 35 homes in a wooded area consistent with the medium density residential land-use and R1-A single-family zoning.

“When we review a plat, which is basically construction plans …,” City Attorney Darren Elkind explained to the commission, “… if the plat as presented complies with your land development code … then you have to approve it. You have no discretion not to approve it.”

City staff recommended approving the project, and a representative from the developer, Atlas Homes, said the plans were drawn up to make the project consistent with existing development.

“What we just tried to do is mimic what was already there; the lot sizes, the accesses,” Tom Russo from Atlas Homes told the City Commission. “That’s just the flavor we want to convey — not one of isolating that 10 acres, but including it with the rest of the neighborhood.”

With some discussion about what the City Commission could do when it comes to development plans consistent with existing zoning, the plat was approved unanimously — barring City Commissioner Charles Paiva, who was absent. Mayor Bob Apgar was present at the meeting, but participated virtually due to a recent positive COVID-19 test.

Moving down south

The other plat approved by the City Commission Aug. 16 was a final plat for Lakewood Park’s first phase.

Lakewood Park is a 433-unit, 198-acre housing development planned for the southeast corner of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Beltway and the planned Beresford Avenue extension. The units include homes on 40-, 50- and 65-foot lots.

Phase one of the project will include 187 of the planned 433 lots on 75.65 acres of the total 198. Lakewood Park’s preliminary plat was approved by the DeLand City Commission in October 2020.

With the final plat approved, the developer can begin selling individual lots and pulling building permits for homes, DeLand Planning Director Mike Holmes explained.

A future phase of the development’s construction will connect Lakewood Park to the future extension of Beresford Avenue to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Beltway.

The plat was approved unanimously by the four city commissioners participating in the meeting.


  1. This is completely ridiculous! We don’t need more homes. Clearly the commission isn’t worried about current residents because this is causing more traffic and distress to all of us currently living here. We didn’t move to the city for a reason. And now many people can’t afford to live here. You’re helping force people out, because what? we’re not the type of residents you want? So much for small town.
    Thanks DeLand.

  2. My question is; What is the City doing to address infrastructure and amenities. From what I have seen they are not big on allowing so called chain business but the recent influx of new homes and their proposed densities will definitely putt a strain the local business. The city needs to bring more commercial development to this city. As it is we have to drive to Daytona or Orange City to find a half way decent variety of shopping and restaurant options. Please note I am a huge fan of the downtown restaurant scene but the pricing is not one I can sustain on a regular basis. We need better shopping and restaurants i.e. Panera, PF Chang’s, Target Starbucks etc and not just in areas that serve the Victoria Hills area but North Deland.
    Some would say if you want to make change get involved. I say let me on the City P&Z and see what I can do.
    Note: I live in Glenwood so I may be barking up the wrong tree but I do spend a lot of my money in Deland for some less than average amenities.


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