ORLANDO, Fla. – Universal Parks & Resorts has selected a developer for its affordable housing community in Orange County.
What You Need To Know
- Universal picks developer for its new affordable housing project
- Wendover Housing Partners, based in Altamonte Springs, was selected
- The housing community will include 1,000 apartments and retail space
- Construction is expected to begin in late 2022
Altamonte Springs, Florida-based Wendover Housing Partners will design, build and manage the housing community, Universal announced Tuesday.
Seventeen developers submitted initial proposals for the project. After the list was narrowed down to five finalists, Wendover was picked by a selection committee that included Universal team members and representatives from the community.
“This is an unprecedented partnership between a major company in the community and a private developer to work together to design a community that is close to where people work, filled with amenities that they want and with rents they can afford,” Wendover founder and CEO Jonathan L. Wolf said in a statement.
The housing community will be located on a 20-acre site near International Drive that Universal pledged to use specifically for the initiative. It will include 1,000 “high-quality” apartments and 16,000 square feet of retail space.
Universal released renderings of what the proposed community will look like once complete. The renderings show a transit area for residents as wells as outdoor common areas that feature gardens, fountains and walkways.
Housing for Tomorrow, a not-for-profit established by Universal, owns the site and serve as master developer on the project—overseeing the initiative to make sure it stays true to the original vision. The entity will enter into a $10 per year, 55-year lease for the property with Wendover. Housing for Tomorrow will also set guidelines for community.
“Affordable housing is one of our community’s biggest challenges and we want to be part of the solution,” Universal Parks & Resorts executive vice president John Sprouls said in a statement. “We have brought people with the right expertise together with land to create a new affordable housing community—and a new approach on the issue.”
Universal first announced plans for the project in 2019. By October 2020, it revealed it was searching for a developer for the project.
Construction on the new housing community is expected to begin in late 2022, Universal said.