MEETING DATE:   December 14, 2009


FROM:                       Bill Wiley, AICP Community Development Director


SUBJECT:                  Ordinance to amend the City’s Growth Management Plan, Future Land Use Element, Chapter 1, B. Existing Land Use Data and D. Goals, Objectives and Policies



Staff Recommendation: 

The Planning staff and Planning Commission recommend approval of the proposed amendment to City’s Growth Management Plan, Future Land Use Element, Chapter 1, B. Existing Land Use Data and D. Goals, Objectives and Policies.



The proposed Comprehensive Plan text amendment is needed to address the increase in large mixed-use development activity in the city. As proposed, the amendment would create a new Mixed-Use category requiring a mix of residential, commercial, and office uses, and may also include light industrial, office, hotel, and institutional uses. Properties would require a minimum of 300 acres to be eligible to receive this designation.


Property designated Mixed-Use would be developed with a mix of at least three different land uses (i.e. residential, commercial, and office) and could not exceed 4 dwelling units per gross residential acre.


The proposed amendment would require any property assigned the Mixed-Use designation to be zoned and developed as a Planned Unit Development PUD. 


The Planning Commission/Local Planning Agency during a public hearing on April 10, 2008 by a vote of 6 to 0, voted to recommend approval.


The first reading of this amendment was held October 13, 2008.  The amendment was subsequently transmitted to the Florida Department of Community Affairs (DCA) and an Objections, Recommendations, and Comments (ORC) Report was issued by the state.  Revisions have been made to the amendment which is reflected in both the ORC response as well as the Justification Statement.



1.         Approve the adoption of the Comprehensive Plan text amendment; or


2.         Other such action as the Commission may deem appropriate.


Fiscal Impact:

There is no fiscal impact to the City.


Submission Date and Time:    12/10/09 5:14 PM____

Department: Community  Development

Prepared by:   Yvette L. Brandt, AICP and Bill Wiley, AICP                     

Attachments:         Yes__X_   No ______

Advertised:   ____Not Required ______                     

Dates:   __________________________                     

Attorney Review :       Yes_X_  No ____



Revised 6/10/04


Reviewed by: Dept. Head __BW____


Finance  Dept. __________________                                     


Deputy C.M. ___________________                                                                         

Submitted by:

City Manager ___________________


Account No. _________________


Project No. ___________________


WF No. ______________________


Budget  ______________________


Available _____________________











































WHEREAS, the City Commission has received written objections, recommendations, and comments from the City of Leesburg Planning Commission acting as the Local Planning Agency, regarding amendment of the Comprehensive Plan of the City of Leesburg, and has made recommendations to the City Commission for amendment of the Plan; and


WHEREAS, the City Commission of the City of Leesburg has held public hearings on the proposed amendment to the plan, in light of written comments, proposals and objections from the general public; 






Section 1


The Growth Management Plan of the City of Leesburg, adopted by the City of Leesburg on September 22, 2003, pursuant to the Local Government Planning and Land Development Regulations Act of 1985, Chapter 163, Part II, Florida Statutes, after public hearings by the City of Leesburg Planning Commission, is hereby amended in the following manner: 


Goal 1

Quality of Life.  The City of Leesburg shall implement Smart Growth through comprehensive, consistent and effective policies, regulations, capital projects and incentives for effective management of the land use pattern in the City to enhance the quality of life for its citizens; promote economic vitality; and, accommodate population and development growth in an environmentally acceptable manner. 


Policy 1.1.1

Future Land Use Map. The adopted Future Land Use Map shall contain and identify appropriate locations for the following land use categories, as defined in the data and analysis of this element.


Land Use Categories

Maximum Density/Intensity

Estate Density Residential

Up to 4 units/gross acre

Low Density Residential

Up to 8 units/gross acre

Medium Density Residential

Up to 12 units/gross acre

High Density Residential

Up to 18 units/gross acre

Downtown Mixed-Use

4.0 FAR/100% ISR

General Commercial

2.0 FAR/80% ISR


2.0 FAR/75% ISR


2.0 FAR/80% ISR


.25 FAR


Development must comply with applicable regulations.


Up to 4 units/gross acre

2.0 FAR/80% ISR


k.            Conservation

The conservation designation includes public lands that have been acquired and private land areas that have been reserved by mutual agreement with the property owner for the preservation and protection of City’s natural resources.  For lands designated as Conservation, residential or non-residential development shall not be allowed.  Passive Recreational uses shall be allowed such as trails, boardwalks, etc.


Objective 1.14


The City shall apply the Mixed-Use Future Land Use designation where appropriate.  The Mixed-Use land use designation requires a mixture of compatible uses, which reinforces an efficient pattern of development, reduces excessive travel demands, promotes multi-modal transportation opportunities, is bicycle and pedestrian-friendly, seeks a jobs-housing balance, provides varied housing opportunities, protects and enhances sensitive environmental areas, and provides sites for schools, parks, and other community services.  The Mixed-Use designation is intended for newly developing areas which are suitable for urban development and are under unified control for master planning.  The purpose of the Mixed-Use designation is to encourage flexible and creative site design.


Policy 1.14.1


The Mixed-Use Land Use designation requires a mix of residential, commercial, and office land uses, and allows light industrial, hotel, institutional, and recreational land uses.  All development designated Mixed-Use shall be rezoned to a Planned Unit Development (PUD).   The Mixed-Use designation may only apply to contiguous property that is a minimum of 300 gross acres.


The maximum floor area ratios and residential units for the Mixed-Use designation shall be as provided in Policy 1.1.1 Future Land Use MapThe Mixed-Use designation shall permit the following mix and range of uses, calculated as a percentage of gross acreage:


LAND USE                                         MINIMUM                  MAXIMUM                

Residential                                                 50%                       80%

Commercial                                               5%                         45%

Office                                                        5%                         45%

Light Industrial                                          0%                         40%

Hotel                                                         0%                         40%

Institutional                                               N/A


Residential over retail or office shall be permitted in mixed-use areas but the residential component shall be excluded from the percentage calculation of gross acreage listed above.

Policy 1.14.2


Residential uses shall be located so as to facilitate bicycle/pedestrian access to retail, office, and other non-residential uses, and to future transit links.  Residential uses may be vertically integrated with office and retail uses.  Mixed-Use developments shall include a diversity of housing types to provide options for residents from a wide range of economic levels and age groups. Attached housing units in the form of apartments, condominiums, and/or townhomes, shall be required.


Policy 1.14.3


A bicycle/pedestrian network shall connect the residential neighborhoods with non-residential uses and recreational areas.  A network of interconnected on-site roadways shall be established to reduce travel time and external trips.


Policy 1.14.4


The PUD ordinance shall include design guidelines that emphasize the pedestrian experience and promote a sense of place.  Design guidelines shall include: building mass and form; pedestrian, bicycle, and vehicular circulation; vehicular access; sidewalks; setbacks; open space; parking; service areas; architectural standards; materials; lighting; signage; and streetscapes.


Policy 1.14.5


Office uses shall be positioned to attract high-tech/high-value employment.  Design of office uses may include corporate campus style development.


Policy 1.14.6


Institutional land uses shall be comprised of schools, civic, cultural, and recreational uses. Parks and other recreational facilities shall be located and designed to encourage frequent use and enhance the community’s quality of life.  The design of Mixed-Use developments shall be consistent with the City’s Level of Service standards for parks and recreation, set forth in Policy 1.1.1 of the Recreation and Open Space Element of the Comprehensive Plan.  The location and timing of schools shall be addressed within the PUD ordinance and shall be consistent with the Goals, Objectives and Policies of the Public School Facilities Ordinance.  Where possible, schools shall be co-located with parks and other public facilities, consistent with Goal 1, Objectives 3 and 4 and associated policies of the Public School Facilities Element.


Policy 1.14.7


The City of Leesburg shall adopt site-specific sub-policies for any property designated Mixed-Use on the Future Land Use Map.  The site-specific sub-policies shall address the following items at a minimum:

·                     Development program, including the maximum number of residential units and non-residential square footage allowed on the property

·                     Development phasing plan

·                     Public facilities analysis and mitigation, including strategies to address the supply of the following, at a minimum:

o   Transportation facilities

o   Stormwater facilities

o   Water and wastewater facilities

o   Water supply

o   Public school facilities


All development designated Mixed-Use shall be rezoned to a Planned Unit Development (PUD). The PUD ordinance shall establish the permitted development program and may include a land use conversion matrix that will allow the developer to modify the approved acreages and/or square feet permitted for each land use, within certain defined thresholds. These conversions may be made to accommodate changes in market conditions etc. provided they do not exceed 10% of the approved residential units, non-residential floor area ratio, and acreage of the corresponding land use and as long as there is no net increase in impacts as a result of the land use conversion. (including transportation, potable water, water supply, sewer, stormwater and public school supply).  These conversions must also remain within the range of minimum and maximum mixture of uses permitted for the mixed use category (consistent with Future Land Use Element Policy 1.14.1).


Secret Promise DRI


Objective 1.14.1


The Secret Promise DRI (referred to under Objective 1.14.1 and the supporting policies as “the DRI” or “the project”) is designated as both Mixed Use and Conservation as depicted on the City’s Future Land Use Map and is consistent with the supporting policies identified in this Objective.


Policy The Secret Promise Development of Regional Impact (DRI) Application for Development Approval (ADA) and sufficiency responses serve as supporting data and analysis for the project. The ADA provides a comprehensive analysis of the suitability of the area for the project proposed and its impacts. This DRI analysis can be used by the City of Leesburg to guide the timing, location, type and amount of future development. Thus, the ADA, sufficiency responses and the DRI Development Order provide supporting data and analysis for the Future Land Use Map (FLUM) and text amendments.  Additionally, the Secret Promise DRI Development Order by implementing these provisions ensures consistency of the Mixed Use and Conservation land use designations on the FLUM with Objective 1.14.1 and supporting policies and future conditions maps of the City of Leesburg Comprehensive Plan.


Policy            The Secret Promise DRI is a mixed use development that shall include a functional integration of residential, commercial and office and may include hotel, institutional, light industrial, recreation uses and supporting infrastructure (e.g. roads, water, sewer, etc.). The planning timeframe for the project is anticipated to be 2009 through build-out in 2025 but may be extended within the DRI development order. The project is scheduled to move forward in three phases.  The maximum non-residential land use intensity shall not exceed 1.0 Floor Area Ratio (FAR).  The maximum residential density shall not exceed 4 dwelling units per gross acre.  Consistent with these intensity/density standards, the Secret Promise DRI is limited to the following development entitlements:


Residential                               4,000 dwelling units and

(single family and                    2,800 age-restricted units


Affordable Housing Units       Maximum of 340 density bonus dwelling units (not to exceed 5% of 6,800 total dwelling units)*

Commercial                             1,600,000 SF

Office                                      1,500,000 SF

Industrial                                 500,000 SF

Hotel                                       400 rooms

Assisted Living                        200 units


*If density bonus units are built off-site, they would receive a 5% increase in density, above the established maximum number of units per acre in the applicable Future Land Use category.  The units shall be allowed in any Future Land Use category that allows residential uses.


These entitlements do not include public/institutional or civic uses needed to serve the community.  These entitlements may be converted through mechanisms described in the DRI development order.  Conversions must not create a net increase in public facility impacts (including transportation, potable water, water supply, sewer, stormwater and public school supply)  and must remain within the range of the minimum and maximum mixture of uses permitted for the mixed use category (consistent with Future Land Use Element Policy 1.14.1).  Additionally, conversions must not exceed 10% of the approved residential units, non-residential entitlements  and acreage of the corresponding land use in order to maintain the character of the development. 


The minimum and maximum mixture of uses and distribution of uses (not including support infrastructure, open space and natural areas) as a percent of the project’s acreage are as follows (consistent with Future Land Use Element Policy 1.14.1):


                                                Minimum         Maximum

Residential                               50%                 80%

Commercial                             5%                   45%

Office                                      5%                   45%

All other uses                          0%                   40%


This policy does not guarantee the approval of development orders which are in accordance with the percent distribution of acreage mix. The approval of development orders shall be consistent with this policy and other policies under Objective 1.14.1 and future conditions maps.


Policy            The Secret Promise DRI will meet all required local, state and federal regulations as specified in the DRI development order and zoning requirements.


Policy            The Secret Promise DRI as analyzed in the ADA is determined to be suitable for the land uses proposed for the site and will remain compatible with the surrounding area through design requirements including standards for buffering and landscaping. The project will also be developed as an intense urban center providing the benefits of a mixed use project that will include  pedestrian activity and other modes of transportation such as sidewalks, bike lanes and golf cart paths.


Policy            Amendments to the DRI through the Notice of Proposed Change process pursuant to s. 380.06(19), FS, including the use of density bonus units for affordable housing, shall not require a plan amendment, provided the change does not include the addition of land or a new use and is otherwise consistent with the comprehensive plan.  Changes to a DRI Development Order adopted by the City of Leesburg shall be reflected in the Conceptual Master Plan and other zoning support documents as a ministerial function.


Policy            The wetlands, wildlife conservation areas and upland preservation areas identified on the Secret Promise DRI Map H dated September 2009 are designated Conservation on the City’s Future Land Use Map.  No development is permitted in areas designated Conservation except those land use activities permitted in the Secret Promise DRI Development Order and Wildlife Management Plan such as passive recreation, trails, and boardwalks.


Section 2.   


All ordinances or part of ordinances in conflict with any of the provisions of this ordinance are hereby repealed.


Section 3. 


This ordinance shall become effective upon its passage and adoption, according to law.


PASSED AND ADOPTED at the regular meeting of the City Commission of the City of Leesburg, Florida, held on the ______ day of __________________, 2009. 






By: _________________________________






City Clerk