ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Friends of Split Oak Forest have taken every path possible to save its trees, and the animals that live among them.
After constant defeat, the next-level dedication may have finally paid off.
On Tuesday, more than 86% of voters said they wanted to protect Split Oak by taking away county commissioners' ability to change the current restrictions, including development, on the land.
However, commissioners already approved the plan for developers to build the Osceola Parkway extension about a year ago.
About a mile and-a-half of the nine-mile toll road would cut through the southwest corner of the forest, connecting State Road 417 with the Osceola Parkway.
County leaders considered the route a compromise, because prior plans cut through a larger portion of the land, and going around the forest would have booted several people from their homes.
Cox Media Group