PLANNING THE FUTURE — DeLand’s 1960s Old Jail is directly across New York Avenue from the Historic Volusia County Courthouse, in the midst of the bustling Georgia Avenue entertainment district. BEACON FILE PHOTO

The DeLand City Commission will meet Monday, June 5, to discuss topics including the proposed plan to redevelop the Old Jail in Downtown DeLand and parking requirements for homes in the city’s core district. 

The Old Jail

The redevelopment of the Old Jail at 130 W. New York Ave. in Downtown DeLand has been a hot topic since 2018. Five years ago, the City of DeLand issued an RFP, or request for proposal, to fix up the property and the dilapidated building just off of the city’s main drag. The City of DeLand currently owns the 60-year-old building, but upon approval of a planned development agreement, the city intends to demolish the Old Jail and cede ownership to a new developer.

GlassHouse Square LLC, associated with Deltran Operations, was the developer selected for the project. But hang-ups — especially relating to the project’s parking area — have kept it in limbo for years. 

The last time the City Commission discussed GlassHouse Square was last September. That’s when the developer’s request to rezone the approximately 1-acre parcel with the Old Jail to a planned development, or PD, for the flexibility to build a mixed-use space, was delayed by the City Commission. 

“We’re getting close,” City Commissioner Charles Paiva said at the time. 

Chief among sticking points were concerns that the development would not create enough parking spaces to accommodate its demand. Currently, a city-owned parking lot next to the Old Jail offers about 40 parking spaces to employees working in and people visiting Downtown DeLand.

GlassHouse Square LLC’s latest parking plan offers 50 parking spaces for the entire development. Forty spaces are guaranteed, per the development plan, during the construction of Phase 1 “either on-site (maximum of 15), offsite to be located within 800 [feet] of the site, or through payment of a ‘parking mitigation fee’ in the amount of $10,000 per waived parking space.”

In addition to the parking spaces, GlassHouse Square LLC plans to build a pedestrian walkway from New York Avenue to Georgia Avenue “that will generally be open to the public” 8 a.m.-midnight daily. 

Vibration monitoring is also included in the plan to mitigate potential damage to nearby historic buildings, and the development is expected to “comply with architectural standards that maintain consistency with the character of the historic downtown area.”

City staff recommends that the City Commission either approve or reject the project instead of continuing GlassHouse Square’s first reading again.

A prepared staff report says that the City Commission ought to determine if it is in DeLand’s best interest to allow for payment instead of parking spaces, and whether the proposed design for GlassHouse Square lives up to what was promised in 2019.

Garages or no garages

Another item on the City Commission’s agenda is a potential change to requirements for indoor parking. In the City of DeLand’s core area, each residential housing unit must have four parking spaces — two indoor and two outdoor. The two indoor parking spaces can take the form of a garage or covered carport. 

But, to allow for more affordable infill development, a proposed change to the city’s code would allow for all four of the required parking spaces to be outdoor.

Additionally, staff is looking to gauge the City Commission’s interest in removing the indoor parking requirement across the entire city, not just the core area — a squared-off chunk of the city with Plymouth Avenue to the north, Beresford Avenue to the south and Hill and Boundary avenues to the east and west, respectively. 

These items and others, like the recognition of DeLand Middle School’s Lady Terriers basketball team, will be up for discussion at the Monday, June 5, City Commission meeting beginning at 7 p.m. 

The DeLand City Commission meets on the first and third Monday of each month at 7 p.m. in the City Commission Chambers at DeLand City Hall, 120 S. Florida Ave. Meetings are also broadcast live on the city’s website, HERE.

To view the full agenda for the June 5 meeting, click HERE.


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