Doral working on annexation of 640-acre development site
By Claudio Mendonça
Doral is close to annexing 640 acres from Northwest 97th to 107th avenues and 74th to 90th streets, an area in which two developers plan 6,300 homes and a third plans major commercial development.
The tract, now covered with close-packed trees, is called Section 8 - an area inside the city's boundaries that remained part of unincorporated Miami-Dade County when Doral became a city in 2003.
But this year, Doral authorities came to an agreement with county commissioners to get the land - and will, if city voters approve by a simple majority in a Jan. 24 referendum. If so, the city instead of the county will do all zoning and permitting in that section.
First, however, the city council Nov. 9 must formally approve an election and modify Doral's municipal charter. Three of five votes are needed.
"This second reading coming up is more symbolic than anything else," said Mayor Juan Carlos Bermudez. "Once approved, annexation of Section 8 will allow the city to issue site-plan approvals and control projects."
Once infrastructure is in place, he said, developments in that part of the city will create a substantial stream of revenue for the fledgling municipality.
"At first, it's hard to calculate," he said. "But it represents additional millions of dollars to the city."
Slated for Section 8 are 6,300 homes - 4,600 single-family homes by Century Builders Inc. and 1,700 units by Lowell Dunn Co. - and commercial development by Codina Realty Services Inc.
The developers have agreed to construct one charter school for the community and donate 45 acres to hold a 25-acre park.
Grand Bay, the Century Builders project, is to have 2,700 homes in its first phase.
Said council member Michael Di Pietro, "This has been a blessing by the county and homebuilders."