02/18/2015 3:25PM

Ocala City Council approves development at Ocala Stud Farm


The Ocala, Fla., City Council approved a plan Tuesday to develop Ocala Stud and Red Oak Farm into a roughly 400-acre residential and commercial area called Trinity Lane, the Ocala Star-Banner reported.

Developer John Brunetti, owner of Hialeah Park, owns both farms. Ocala Stud comprises roughly 183 acres, while the adjacent Red Oak Farm is about 226 acres. Both properties were annexed into the Ocala city limits from Marion County and given new land-use designations.

Red Oak Farm has been in the Brunetti family since Joe Brunetti purchased the property in 1969. His son, John, bought Ocala Stud in 2010 through his Trinity Lane LLC, expanding his plans for development in a growing section of the Ocala area.

The operators of Ocala Stud were granted a long-term lease under terms of the 2010 purchase, allowing the farm to continue operations, which currently includes an eight-horse stallion roster. The farm had been owned and operated by the O’Farrell family since 1956 and is a perennial leading breeder and consignor in central Florida.

Representatives for Ocala Stud were not available Wednesday to discuss the farm’s future after the board’s decision.

The property resides on the southeastern outskirts of Ocala near Interstate 75, next to Trinity Catholic High School and Glen Hill Farm.

Craig Bernick, president of Glen Hill Farm and a longtime opponent of the development, was present at the city council meeting and brought forth a proposal to lessen the density of residential buildings on the property near his farm. He told the Star-Banner after the meeting that he was not satisfied with the compromise presented by the developers.

After the meeting, Bernick noted on Twitter that the Ocala Stud property had been sold to Brunetti without offering Glen Hill Farm an opportunity to purchase the land at any price.

After Tuesday’s meeting, Trinity Lane was divided into five segments, as reported by the Star-Banner: 42 acres of Residential I, for single- and multifamily and recreational use, with a maximum of 200 single-family and 600 multifamily units; 113 acres of Residential II, for single-family and recreational use, with a maximum of 345 single-family units; 40 acres of Multi-Use I, for commercial and office development; 65 acres of Multi-Use II, for residential commercial, office, hotel, educational, and employment center, including a maximum of 500 multifamily units; and 115 acres of Multi-Use III, which is similar to the previous segment but allows for single-family housing.