Updated:ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. —
Residents in Orange County’s Avalon Park feared a new shopping center would bring more traffic, but WFTV found out developers had plans to improve traffic and shorten the commute.
Developer Frank Cawthon, Jr. with FHC Development told WFTV reporter Myrt Price the plan would include building a 100,000 square foot shopping center with a grocery store anchor, retail stores and restaurants.
The plan would also include a 50,000 square foot office building and a 10-acre public park, according to Cawthon.
Standard Pacific Homes also planned to build close to 200 houses behind the shopping center.
“I think it would be good for the economy, and good for the area,” said David Spurlock.
However, some residents worry it would add to the traffic congestion.
“I would think if they’re going to bring in more businesses that they’re going to bring in more people to this area and it’s already too congested,” Berkis Lopez said.
To account for the added traffic, the developer planned to put in a $300,000 traffic light so residents would still be able to get around.
The developer also built a road to connect Sunflower Trail and Avalon Park Boulevard.
It took about 15 minutes to drive from one side to the other, but the connecting road was expected to shorten the trip to only a couple of minutes.
“I live right on that road and it would make it easier,” said Brittany Mroz.
Convenient or not, some believe the benefits of the development outweigh the drawbacks.