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Alliance Residential Company held a community meeting this past Friday to update residents on changes the company made to the design of Lake House, a proposed 10-story apartment project in Ivanhoe Village. Approximately 60 residents filled the Marks Street Senior Center armed with questions for the developer.
The College Park Paper spoke with John Zeledon, Managing Director of Alliance Residential, before the meeting began. Zeledon said that Alliance is a privately held company that operates like franchises throughout the United States. He and his partner have the Central and North Florida territory. Zeledon has lived and worked in Winter Park for 15 years. Zeledon selected Ivanhoe Village because of the “visibility of the site and the vibe of Ivanhoe.” He added that the location – the Baldwin Fairfield Chapel – is zoned MU-2, which essentially means high density.
Zeledon and Greg Bryla, a landscape architect with Dix.Hite and a resident of Ivanhoe Village, lead the meeting. One of the larger criticisms from residents – besides the traffic, which we will address shortly – about the project, was that the building was unwelcoming to people outside of residents of Lake House. To address this concern, the building was redesigned to include a first floor café on the southeastern corner of the project – the corner closest to Orange Ave. The café is approximately 2,500 square feet and would have glass doors that could open when Central Florida weather allowed.
Zeledon shared that the redesign lowers the proposed project by one story, which means Alliance will not be seeking a bonus for height. The project loses about 20 units, reducing the total to about 260 apartments. They will still be seeking a density bonus. Throughout the presentation, Zeledon repeated the phrase, “We have taken steps and listened to you.”
Another change to the Lake House was the outside design. Some critics said the building looked like a dorm. Bryla attempted to include some artistic elements. For example, the redesign includes a cement product that can produce photo etching of iconic landmarks of Ivanhoe Village such as the Fairfield Chapel. These would be displayed on the first floor of the project. The architects included other textures and colors to better represent the vibe of Ivanhoe Village.
The College Park Paper requested the updated renderings of the Lake House from Alliance, but did not receive them.
When the floor was opened to questions, traffic was the main concern. Residents complimented Alliance on the steps they took to redesign the building, but still felt traffic would be an issue. Alliance’s traffic study found the Lake House would generate about 900 trips inward and 900 trips outward daily. This amount of traffic was deemed acceptable to the City of Orlando. Some residents pointed out that The Yard, another mixed-use project already under construction in Ivanhoe, is going to add another huge amount of traffic to an area that is already congested.
Alliance has resubmitted the design to the City and the Orlando Municipal Planning Board will meet on Tuesday, April 18 to vote on the project.