DeSOTO COUNTY, FL-The Washington, DC-based Carlyle Group and Cleveland-based Cameratta Properties LP are developing a 5,700-acre master planned community that will include 10,000 residential units, a town center, and retail and office space. The property, which is currently being operated as a ranch, is located south of Arcadia, along two miles of State Road 31 frontage.

Cameratta acquired the property, known as the 2 X 4 Ranch, in April 2006 from McCarlton Partners LTD. Carlyle acquired a 50% stake in the property from Cameratta. Financial details were not disclosed.

A project cost and scheduled groundbreaking have not yet been determined. “This is a rare development opportunity,” says the Carlyle Group managing director and head of the US real estate team Robert Stuckey. “Demand for planned communities is on the rise, as people seek out environments that combine housing, shopping and recreation.”

The companies will develop plans for the community and seek local and state approvals over the next two years. Preliminary plans call for a mix of multifamily and single-family housing on the site. In addition to the residential and commercial space, plans for the site include developing schools, houses of worship, a golf course, recreation facilities, athletic fields and walking trails.

“This is a nice location because it’s within commuting distance to Fort Myers,” says Cameratta Properties spokeswoman Rachel Galvin. “It provides a good opportunity for housing than is lower priced than those along the coast.”

Other projects the two companies have partnered on include High Point Place, a 32-story condominium project in Downtown Fort Myers.

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