The City of Venice Planning Commission has given preliminary approval for rezoning 30 acres near the city's manufacturing hub to allow for the construction of a 510-unit apartment complex with rents starting at $750 a month.
Developer Edward Pinto has named the project the John Nolen Gardens, in honor of the legendary urban planner who designed the city in the 1920s. According to the Gondolier Sun newspaper, the Planning Commission endorsed rezoning the property on Knights Trail Road from eight to 18 units per acre. Pinto said such density would allow him to go ahead with the project without government subsidies. The project still must be approved by the City Council. A hearing is scheduled for late June.
The complex is near PGT Innovations, Tervis Tumbler and other manufacturers, whose leaders have told the city that the lack of affordable housing in the area has hindered their ability to attract workers.
"It's for working people who need an honest job with an honest wage where they don't have to spend 20 percent of their income on commuting costs," says attorney Jeff Boone, who is representing the developer, according to the Gondolier Sun.