County’s vote on Oak Bridge development plans pushed to later date

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The county’s final vote on development plans slated for the Oak Bridge Club will have to come another day.

According to St. Johns County spokeswoman Sarah Hand, the two agenda items concerning the development plans that went before the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) today, Jan. 16, have been “continued” to a later date and time that is to be determined. Hand said the applicant requested additional time to consider concerns brought forth by the board and community. The county spokeswoman noted that approximately 20 to 30 opponents of the development attended the meeting to express their concerns.

Golf course owner Alta Mar Holdings LLC (the applicant) is seeking the county’s approval of zoning and land use changes that would allow the company to sell six holes of the course for development into an age restricted residential community (55+) up to 330 units and four acres of commercial uses with a maximum of 15,000 square feet.

The plan is to sell the course’s back 40 acres, with 23 of those acres to be developed, and reduce the course’s holes from 18 to 12. The applications filed with the county specifically feature requests for changes to the Caballos del Mar Development of Regional Impact (DRI) and Players Club at Sawgrass Planned Unit Development (PUD), which would allow the property owners to allocate existing, vested development rights to the golf course.

The Planning and Zoning Agency (PZA) unanimously recommended approval of the Oak Bridge applications in December.

Opponents of the development say it will lead to increased traffic and safety issues on the roads, decreased property values, a loss of wildlife, a loss of green space and more. One particular group of Ponte Vedra residents has formed over the past year with the desire to purchase the property in question and preserve it as a community park. For more information on the vision of “Ponte Vedra Central Park,” click here.

David Miller and his partner and cousin Jeff Miller of Alta Mar purchased the mortgage note for the Oak Bridge Club in 2014 after the club’s former operator went into default. Since then, the Millers have embarked on a now four-year journey to resurrect the property, develop a plan to raise capital and win over the public. For more information on that journey and details on the plan, click here.

“The Oak Bridge team appreciates the commission’s time yesterday in helping us understand the details they want added to the proposed development plan," said David Miller. "We will certainly make the requested revisions, while staying within the footprint of the written agreement made with the residents of the surrounding Sawgrass Players Club community. In the end, having a sustainable project at Oak Bridge will benefit not only the Players Club residents but everyone in Ponte Vedra.”

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