After a decade of debate, the first 2050 village wins approval.
Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, developers of Lakewood Ranch, received approval from the Sarasota County Commission May 12 to move forward with a 5,100-unit, mixed-use village development on about 5,500 acres.
Known as the “Villages of Lakewood Ranch South,” the multi-phase project surrounds several large lakes and open space areas. The project was supported by local business groups in hopes of it jump-starting the local economy.
The developers sought approval under the county's cumbersome Sarasota 2050 regulatory scheme since the village regulations were adopted about eight years ago.
The commission approved a comprehensive plan amendment and a rezoning application on 4-1 votes with Commissioner Jon Thaxton in opposition. Thaxton argued that the plan did not meet fiscal neutrality requirements or environmental standards for a village.