GatewayJPG

This illustration proposes a new multi-family development at the corner of Old Englewood Road and North Indiana Avenue (State Road 776). Sarasota County commissioners will be asked Tuesday to approve modified plans with fewer units and three building that will stay within the county’s 35-foot height limit.

SARASOTA — Sarasota County commissioners will decide Tuesday whether Gateway Court will become a multi-family residential gateway into Englewood.

The developers are seeking a rezoning that will allow them to build a 90-unit, multi-family condominium and apartment complex on an 11-acre triangular property in north Englewood at Old Englewood Road and North Indiana Avenue (State Road 776).

The project has seen a few bumps in the road before getting to county commissioners. Since 2009, the proposed development has gone through several different designs and renditions.

In November 2019, before the county’s Planning Commission, the project saw more than 150 Englewood residents — many of whom were Pine Lake residents whose homes abut the property — turn out to protest the project, according to Sun reports.

The developers asked the Planning Commission to recommend a project that called for 96 units in four 45-foot tall buildings, which would exceed the county’s 35-foot height limit. The Planning Commission voted 5-2 to deny the rezoning request.

Since then, the plans have been modified, said Brian Lichterman, consultant for the developer.

“We think it is a workable plan,” Lichterman said.

The project now calls for 90 units in only three buildings that will stay within the county’s height limit, Lichterman said. The mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units has not been decided.

In the center of the property is what Lichterman described as a "degraded wetland." Developers propose to create an artificial wetland on 4.63 acres at the south end of the property that will also serve as a 235-foot wide vegetative buffer between Gateway Court and Pine Lake homes.

The item is set for discussion when the County Commission reconvenes after a lunch break at 1:30 p.m. at the County Administration Building, 1660 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota.

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