Wesley Chapel, FL (February 18, 2020) – Avalon Park Group/sitEX has been working with Pasco County over the past year to develop an agreement that will bring smart growth and development to Wesley Chapel in the form of a downtown cultural center. The agreement was unanimously approved today at the Pasco County Board of County Commissioners meeting.
“This project is truly a unique opportunity for Pasco County,” says Beat Kahli, CEO, Avalon Park Group/sitEX. “It is our vision that Avalon Park Wesley Chapel will be a place where families can build memories and traditions together in a town, they can call their own.”
According to the agreement, Avalon Park Group/sitEX will use existing entitlements from the approved MPUD in a more efficient manner to add to the approximately 1,000 single-family homes already existing or under construction in Avalon Park Wesley Chapel.
Avalon Park Group/sitEX proposes to spend in excess of $800 million to develop 215-acres into a mixed-use, urban downtown. Based on Traditional Neighborhood Design/Transit Oriented Design and smart growth principles, the focal point will be an area primarily comprised of multi-storied buildings with a mix of uses that will all be within walking distance, thus establishing a vibrant, pedestrian-scaled environment unlike the single use development that are typical in conventional suburban communities and that can only be comfortably reached using the automobile. The urban design and full mix of uses will result in creating a place that has an identifiable city center and edge. Walkable streets and alternative means of transportation (bikes, scooters, ride share, etc.) encourage positive and spontaneous interaction in the integrated civic, recreational, cultural and commercial centers. Workplaces and housing options available for a diverse population make a community for everyone in Pasco County.
The value added to this public/private partnership will be recognized in several agreement requirements from both parties.
The agreement outlines that Avalon Park Group/sitEX will deliver a minimum of $90 million in public infrastructure and Class A offices, including spine roads, public parking garages, park and ride parking spaces, transit improvements and bus shelters. It is additionally outlined that the developer is allowed to use 20% of the rise in increased County-only general ad valorem taxes to spend on this specified public infrastructure.
Understanding the immense need for workspace in Pasco County, a minimum of 75,000 SF of Class A office space is required, while Avalon Park Group/sitEX plans call for over 200,000 SF in vertically mixed-use buildings.
Upon completion, Avalon Park Wesley Chapel will encompass more than 1,800 acres and will generate close to $198 million in ad valorem revenue to the county over a 30-year period. This translates into an additional $112 million more than a conventional suburban development on the same acreage. In addition to the 230% increase in ad valorem revenue, it is anticipated that the small town will create over 2,100 jobs and be home to more than 15,000 residents. Completely different than the typical strip mall and subdivision developments seen throughout the County, Avalon Park Wesley Chapel will create a sense of place and truly be the place to live, learn, work and play in Pasco County.
In addition to added revenue, the traditional neighborhood design calls for less impact on county resources, while generating significantly more revenue for the County and the Sheriff’s Office in the form of traffic, fire, schools and parks. Since residents can walk to work, shopping, schools, restaurants and other services, traffic is significantly decreased by internally capturing those trips.
Fire Station 44, which services Avalon Park Wesley Chapel, will receive fire impact fees paid by the developer to offset impacts.
Another important part of the agreement includes the play component of the community, more specifically parks and recreation. Building on the relationships with the Pasco County Fine Arts Council and the Pasco County Library system, alongside the quarterly community festivals, monthly movies and food truck nights and various community outreach activities, Downtown Avalon Park Wesley Chapel will be designed around and continue to program at its own expense, its own open spaces, while still paying approximately $2 million to Pasco County in park impact fees.
While not part of the agreement, education is at the forefront of the Avalon Park Wesley Chapel development. The New River Elementary site was dedicated to the County by Avalon Park Group/sitEX. Additionally, Phase I of Pinecrest Wesley Chapel Charter School is under construction in Downtown Avalon Park Wesley Chapel and will open for the 2020-21 school year with the goal of becoming the highest rated school in the Tampa Bay area. This school is managed by Academica, which operates three National Blue Ribbon Charter Schools in Miami-Dade County. The on-site schools will provide nearly 2.5 times the capacity that are needed to serve all student stations in all of Avalon Park Wesley Chapel (3,386 seats provided versus the anticipated demand of 1,389 seats).
Even after revenue split and excluding any single-family within Downtown Avalon Park Wesley Chapel, over the 30-year period the County will generate almost 50% more revenue ($128 million versus $86 million). This is all while assuming that all other impact fees are paid to offset the cost of development.
The final component to the agreement outlines that if the developer does not deliver on the promised development components, no incentives will be provided.
“It was important for us to develop a program with Pasco County that was a win for the community,” Kahli says. “It is our mission to change the way the world lives, learns, works and plays and public private partnerships are instrumental in fulfilling this mission of creating a community anyone in Wesley Chapel can call home.”
Avalon Park Group/sitEX has successfully executed these design principals in the flagship community, Avalon Park Orlando, and is currently developing Avalon Park Tavares and Avalon Park Daytona Beach using the same standards.
About Avalon Park Group/sitEX
Avalon Park Group/sitEX is a uniquely diversified family of companies engaged in businesses ranging from master-planned community development, to home building, mining and property management, in Florida, Texas and Switzerland. With more than $1 billion in total assets, Avalon Park Group/sitEX combines its exceptional reputation, sound business experience and significant financial resources to invest in extraordinary opportunities. At Avalon Park Group/sitEX, our mission is to change the way the world lives, learns, works and plays through creating healthy sustainable communities and every aspect thereof. Avalon Park Group/sitEX develops communities like Avalon Park, where our residential villages are surrounded by preservation, fields, and ponds that are interconnected by roadways, pedestrian walks, and trails that provide effortless access to For more information on Avalon Park Group/stiEX, visit www.AvalonParkGroup.com or call 407-658-6565.
Contact: Beat Kahli, Avalon Park Group/sitEX, 321-229-4116 or Stephanie Lerret, Avalon Park Group, 407-427-6073.