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Manatee commission rejects proposed apartments

BRADENTON — With the commission chambers overflowing with residents wearing red shirts opposed to an apartment project, the Manatee County Commission today denied a developer’s request for a rezoning.

It was standing room only as about 150 people packed into the chamber to hear about the proposal to build a 216-unit apartment complex on about 25 acres north of the Ridgewood Meadows mobile home neighborhood along Victory Road in Ellenton.

Mobile home park residents who spoke against the project said the three-story apartment buildings would not be suitable for a site that is surrounded by one-story mobile homes.

They also contend the land has a deed restriction to provide housing for residents who are at least 55 years old.

In a 6-1 vote, with Commissioner Donna Hayes voting in the minority, the commission denied the request to rezone the property from a single-family manufactured home designation to planned development residential.

The rezoning would allow an increase in density from 4.5 units per acre to more than 8 units per acre.

Several of the commissioners said they liked the proposed project, just not in that location.

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