• 7 p.m. Thursday, 11/16/2023
Our Mission: Conserve, protect, and restore waters resources in the Loxahatchee and St. Lucie Rivers, and keep and restore the natural systems in Martin County, Florida, with a primary focus in the Atlantic Ridge Ecosystem.

PLEASE ATTEND, and pass around. LPA deciding on development Expansion outside of current RLS area. Remember: The public was told Discovery (Atlantic Fields) was unique and complying with RLS criteria would be a seldom and difficult challenge for developers.

Summary written by Virginia Sherlock, Esq.

Read LPA Agenda

Two proposed amendments to the Martin County Comprehensive Plan will be presented to the Local Planning Agency (THIS THURSDAY 11/16) for the Calusa Creek Ranch project, which seeks to designate more than 3,900 acres of agricultural land (including 621 acres of wetlands) off Kanner Highway and Bridge Road for Rural Lifestyle use. The applicant seeks a Future Land Use Map change as well as a Comp Plan text amendment to expand the Rural Lifetyle designation to apply to still more acreage in the County's western farmlands.

The Rural Lifestyle designation approved by Commissioners Harold Jenkins, Doug Smith and Stacey Hetherington is available for any property of 1,000 or more contiguous acres adjacent to the primary or secondary Urban Services District or a freestanding USD. The Calusa Creek Ranch amendment would eliminate the requirement for property to be adjacent to a USD and would allow the Rural Lifestyle designation to be applied to property within 6,000 feet (more than a mile) of the USD if the property is a minimum of 3,000 acres.

The Calusa Creek Ranch proposal would change the text of the Comp Plan to allow for density in excess of one unit per 20 acres (although a proposed maximum density is not specified . . . the proposal provides that maximum density will be the "density allowed in the P.U.D.")

In addition to the "self-supporting project elements" such as first-aid, private security, recreation amenities, and a community store which are allowed in Rural Density communities, the Calusa Creek Ranch adds "residential multi-slip docking facilities" to be included for accessing the St. Lucie Canal.

At 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 16, the LPA will consider the Comp Plan text amendment to expand the Rural Lifestyle designation and approve a Future Land Use Map Amendment for the 3,902.64 acres owned by JWA Ranch, LLC, along Bridge Road and SW Kanner Highway not far from SW Pratt Whitney Road. The owners of JWA Ranch, LLC, are from Palm Beach Gardens, West Palm Beach, and New York, NY. The Ranch P.U.D. is described as "an exclusive luxury rural enclave of 175 dwelling units" plus two 18-hole golf courses, 24 golf cottages, pro shops, administrative offices, food and beverage service and "world-class outdoor recreational activities and amenities."

The applicant boasts that the project "is expected to attract and introduce new visitors and future residents" to Martin County who will be "so enthralled with the community that they decide not to leave."

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