A A 350-unit apartment complex is planned for the former Moors Golf Club on Avalon Boulevard in Miltonbut some of the close neighbors plan to fight the development due to concerns about traffic, privacy and their home values.

The developers of East Avalon LLC request that Santa Rosa County Commissioners grant a rezoning at a meeting Thursday that would allow them to move forward with a multi-family development in the otherwise zoned Freeway Commercial Development District.

Planning documents filed with the county show developers would turn 40 acres along the Avalon Boulevard frontage of the parcel into an apartment complex, but the rest of the 364.7 acres to the north and east would remain undeveloped .

Dozens of neighbors emailed the county opposing the zoning change, largely expressing concern that the apartment building concept will negatively impact neighborhood property values . It’s an area with homes typically valued between $400,000 and $500,000, according to residents and the real estate website’s estimated values.

“As a real estate agent, I have observed that there is a demand for high-end homes and condos,” resident Bonnie Evans wrote in an email. “Given that the homes on this street were built and purchased in this manner, wouldn’t it make sense to continue this level of development on the golf course property with similar homes and high-end condos?” …I’m sure there are more suitable locations for additional apartments.

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Resident Lori Stacey, who is the secretary of the nearby Moors HOA, moved into her home in 2016, years after the golf course closed.

“I understood that it was going to be developed. I think we all knew it wouldn’t be a green space, but the most important thing is that the 350 apartments run parallel to the entrance to our housing estate,” she said. “It was supposed to be a golf course community and now they’re going to tear down apartments there.”

Rodney Sutton, who is listed as the developer’s contact in planning documents, was not immediately available for comment on Tuesday, but planning documents show the developers are proposing increased setbacks, landscaping and buffers to help address residents’ concerns.

For example, the documents show, by code, that setbacks must be 30 feet, whereas East Avalon LLC suggests 150 feet and a landscape buffer of 70 feet instead of the required 10 feet.

Stacey said residents are grateful for the developer’s communication and involvement, which is rare in these cases, but the HOA group is still pushing for an overhaul that would see apartment buildings relocated to the north end of the plot away from their homes. .

“As it is now, when I open my front door this is what I will see – a large apartment building – which is not what I intended to see when I bought this house,” Stacey said, adding that the subdivision is surrounded by a bayou, which could potentially see flooding issues with more development nearby.

Other neighbors who wrote letters of opposition echoed the sentiment that they expected some sort of single-family or commercial development on the site, and some said they would never have bought their homes in knowing that a multi-family development could take place in the future.

Ownership of the former Moors Golf Club was last sale in 2014at that time, the new owner talked about bringing in a specialty grocery store, an upscale restaurant, an assisted living facility, and an entertainment destination, a business that never happened.

Then, in 2018, the county came up with the idea of ​​acquiring the land to be used for sports fields, but that also did not materialize.

The special meeting on the rezoning application will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday at the Santa Rosa County Administrative Complex.

Emma Kennedy can be reached at [email protected] or 850-480-6979.