The Planning Board hopes the HOA and the project's engineer can come to a mutual agreement on stormwater solutions.
The Planning Board unanimously recommended approval for a development order, rezoning and preliminary plat request for the construction of 60-townhome units off U.S. 1, hoping that the project engineer and the Ormond Lakes homeowners association can come to an agreement to solve the existing drainage issues affecting nearby residents.
A point of contention between the two parties is a ditch in the back of a property in Cliffside Drive, which was constructed as a solution to previous stormwater issues back in 2009, explained Planning Director Steven Spraker at the meeting. Ormond Grande will not be discharging water into that ditch, according to Spraker. Project engineer Parker Mychenberg, who is one-third owner of the project, said he's willing to maintain the ditch regardless, as well as donate fill and pay for a portion of the piping the HOA seeks to complete.
HOA President Joe Gallagher spoke before the board and asked the project's proposals be tabled until the Mychenberg implements a solution to the standing water in the ditch, which he said posed a threat of flooding, erosion, transient alligators and decreased safety to the neighborhood's children. A couple homeowners have also obtained an attorney for representation on the matter.
Ormond Lakes resident Thomas Gaynor also spoke at the meeting, saying that the standing water has been there since 2006. He's been active on committees within the HOA since 2005, including the stormwater committee, and pointed out that Mychenberg designed the stormwater systems for Ormond Lakes and the upcoming Ormond Grande project. They are willing to work him to find a solution, he said.
“There’s some responsibility here and we’re asking him to help us fix it," Gaynor said.
Board Member Mike Scudiero said the homeowners surrounding the Ormond Grande project likely would never have wanted to see that property developed. The project actually began construction in 2004 but halted in 2006 due to the recession.
“I think there’s not really another good option here that’s going to make the nearby residents happy," Scudiero said. "I think you have to remember what the property owner’s rights are here, and you heard it — there was a time where this could have been an industrial plant.”