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MIAMI-Lennar Corp. is proposing the development of 174 townhomes and 380 multifamily units on a 45.8-acre industrial site in the Doral Isles community.

Over the past several years, the Miami-based homebuilder has constructed or contracted to build around 3,000 single-family and multifamily homes on the 600-acre development site in an area bounded by Northwest 58th Street and Florida’s Turnpike in northwest Miami-Dade County.

“We’re in the final year and half to two years of development,” Doyle Dudley, Lennar’s South Florida land division president, tells GlobeSt.com.

The homebuilder is reopening an existing application with the county’s Community Zoning Appeals Board No. 9, which seeks a substantial zoning deviation on the 48.5-acre site. Lennar wants permission to modify a governing land development agreement to allow for a planned area development, including multifamily structures. The property currently is zoned for heavy industrial manufacturing use and limited apartment development.

Although they originally filed the application in 1998, Dudley says that Lennar officials spent the past several years negotiating with state officials to resolve local road access to the turnpike. “It’s been in there a while, because we had to work with the Florida Department of Transportation,” he says.

It’s uncertain when construction could start, because Dudley anticipates the company will require a second hearing on the application in September before the Miami-Dade County Commission. “If it’s approved then, it would be another six months before the land development plan is ready,” he says. When approved, Miami-based Luxcom Inc. would be charged with constructing the multifamily project.

Although Dudley couldn’t confirm the information, it is likely those units would possess characteristics similar to the Bimini at Doral, a condominium project within the gated Doral Isles community. Those units start at $186,990 for two bedrooms of 1,712 sf and 238,990 for three bedrooms of 2,497 sf.

News of the zoning petition comes as Lennar is reporting substantial demand for its homebuilding products. The company is reporting a 74% increase in new home orders through the seven months ended June 30–15,312 units, up from 8,784 reported for the same period in 2000.

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