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Harvey Vengroff
Sarasota Monday, May 2, 2016 5 years ago

Will Vengroff’s affordable housing plans move ahead?

Entrepreneur Harvey Vengroff must earn approval from a supermajority of the City Commission to proceed with plans for an apartment complex east of downtown.
by: David Conway Deputy Managing Editor

Today, the City Commission will consider a proposed comprehensive plan amendment that would allow Harvey Vengroff’s pursuit of a 393-unit apartment complex on Fruitville Road to proceed.

Vengroff, who manages around 1,500 rental units in the region, is attempting to change the city’s zoning designation of a nearly 8-acre site at 2211 Fruitville Road. A new classification would permit a density of 50 units per acre, which he says is essential to make his plans for affordable housing economically feasible.

A supermajority of four commissioners is necessary for the comprehensive plan amendment to gain approval. In April, Vengroff expressed some skepticism about the city’s interest in aiding his plans, but he believes the project would help address a long-standing workforce housing shortage in the city.

“They need affordable housing,” Vengroff said in an earlier interview with the Sarasota Observer. “Just let us do it.”

Both city staff and the Planning Board have offered their support for the proposed comprehensive plan amendment.

Even if the commission approves the amendment, there are more hurdles for Vengroff to clear before his project can become a reality. Perhaps most significantly, he plans to seek a reduction in the required number of parking spaces for the apartment complex.

Also on the agenda for today's City Commission meeting:

The full agenda for the meeting can be found on the city's website.

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