The Villages Success Spawns Copycat in Bay and Walton Counties

The Villages survived the housing bubble burst better than most. Last year more than 4,000 homes were sold there. St. Joe Co. wants to duplicate that success in the Florida Panhandle.

Palm Coast, FL – March 17, 2014 – St. Joe Co. has decided to expand its West Bay Sector Plan in Bay and Walton counties to 50,000 acres with plans to follow the lead of The Villages, an age-restricted community covering 20,000 acres northwest of Orlando.

St. Joe’s amended master plan will need to be approved by Bay and Walton counties as well as by the state. If the new plan is approved soon, new homes could be popping up there by next year.

For a detailed report, read St. Joe Co. reveals vision for its Bay-Walton communities // MAP from the Panama City News-Herald.

3 replies
  1. George Edward Chuddy
    George Edward Chuddy says:

    Palm Coast – Largest planned Community in the Worl

    Daytona Beach Sunday News-Journal AREA Section ‘C’, August 17, 1975. Titled: The Palm Coast Predicament, Subtitle: Charges of Corruption, Huge Lawsuits, A Probe of Criminal Actions, Hit ITT Development.

    Series Continues. The second article in this exclusive series will appear in the Monday Morning Journal. It describes the battle between Community Development Corp. and its chief engineer. The third story in the series will be in the Monday’s Evening News. Following stories in the series will run consecutively in The Morning Journal and Evening News.

    First in a Series of Eight Articles by Stephen Doig and Ronal Williamson News-Journal Staff Writers.

    A Portion of the Article Reads:

    PALM COAST —-Six years after its ballyhooed inception as one of the “Largest planned communities in the World,” this massive development covering some 156 square miles of Flagler County is once again the center of controversy.

    The Scandal that erupted into the open in late July involves a spreading wave of allegations of corporate corruption, kickbacks from contractors, bribes to officials, substandard construction and environmental shortcuts.

    In the months while the situation at the huge development by ITT Community Development Corp. ( CDC ) has been coming to light, these events have occurred…

  2. George Edward Chuddy
    George Edward Chuddy says:

    The Palm Coast Project ..’…100,000 acres …’

    FR: 1972 An Approach to a New City: Palm Coast :

    Planning a City

    Given the mode of growth, we confront the unhappy fact that even if engineering controls are ideal to the point where physical pollution is zeroed out, the community might still become the quintessence of social gargage heaps, amorphous in structure,
    Page 148
    malignant to the personality, monotonous in living rhythms, dehumanized to the edge of anonymity, and unarticulated to the point of disharmony. Those whoe have read The Death and Life of Great American Cities 16 by Jane Jacobs, saw chronicled in this already classic treatise some of the most monumental errors conceivable from city to city, from suburb to suburt.

    It is easy to say we are cognizant of the problem and even that we know how awesome it is. But candoe forces us to admit the pervisity of the dilemma. This should not be surprising, because planning may be one of the most stubborn problems the world faces. One knows from the start that all the problems cannot be solved, because the state of the art is not optimal…nor will it ever be. Picture this: No Community approaching

    100,000 acres

    has ever been both predesigned and come to fruition. So, if nobody has planned anything of this scope, who can do it? We at Palm Coast , however, start by asking the question a different way–how are we to do it? As a minute prologue, allow us a couple of quick, simple examples.

    Many communities make much of the fact that they have parks–nice green parks with quaint wooden benches in bucolic settings. There is even a tendency to automatically equate parks with proper planning. But if there is one thing that research shows , it is a park alone means nothing. It is where the park is situated –how it is related to the dynamics of the community–that is significant. This is whyin so many cities a park in one area is haven for the flowering of the human spirit, and a park in another area is a hot house for delinquency. So, it is clear that the issue is the context of what we offer, rather than merely what we offer.

    Suprise at the paradoxes in planning is not new. Many experts have pointed out that new buildings do not prevent slums, just as old buildings do not cause them. In planning, thousands of items, big and small, are critical. In a major community, little issues are no longer little, but are magnified; the size and arrangement of the blocks, the pattern of traffic, the solution to lighting problems, the placement of shps, the development of recreation areas, the provisions for parking areas and facilities, the location of churches, and the establishment of footbridges and vehicle bridges. What we are saying is that planning, like any other essentially vital social science, is not something readily accomplished by
    Page 149

  3. George Edward Chuddy
    George Edward Chuddy says:

    The Palm Coast Project = 160 Sq. Miles

    FR: 1972 ‘…An Approach to a New City: Palm Coast..’

    It is self-evident that our earth is finite and that our population is growing. In ever increasing numbers, man must be sheltered, and the shelter, of course, must cover land. Transportation media to and from the shelter must cover land. Shops and service facilities must cover land. Who will say that land should not be cleared for at least these purposes, assuming an increase in population?
    Proceeding from this starting point, we quickly arrive at the most sensitive area of environmental turmoil: making certain that when man clears and improves land, he simultaneously maximizes environmental integrity and maintains ecosystem continuity. thus being the challenges to us at Palm Coast. In our deliveration on the environment and ecosystems, as will be seen, much consideration has been given to both plant and animal life. Every attempt has been and shall be made to assure maintenance of al parameters of life cycles. Literature, both scientific and lay, is full of differing criteria with regard to protection for various plants and animals. In all candor, there is no way that all the sincere voices can be satisfied.
    At Palm Coast, the preponderance of voices will have a city more satisfactory in the ecological sense than ever before anywhere. Neither perfection nor utopia will result…only the best that our talents, time, energies and resources can produce. At Palm Coast, given the fact of biological synergism, we do speak for plant life…and we do speak for animal…but most of all we speak for man.
    Dr. J. Norman Young
    Page 128

    What follows is of necessity an all too brief discussioni of an approach to a new city. The brevity is unfortunate considering the scores of thousands of words appearing in out technical studies. It is our hope that the reader will gain at least a few insights into our thinking, our philogophy, our science. We only ask him to keep in mind the alternative to what we are doing with our land. It, as is certain with land ownership, our land has been sold to independent subdividers, each of whom built a fifty unit subdivision ( moe than the average builder in the U.S.) there would arise at the very least 5,000 different subdivisions– unplanned, unintegrated, uncoordinated, and without all our controls. Such an eventuality would clearly be unacceptable …typical of the American tragic city-building past. There is another alternative, to be sure. Do not build at all; but then how would the necessity of shelter be provided for the expanding population? In a book published recently, Housing Crisis, U.S.A. 1 ) P. Fried estimates that in a ten year period in the United States in order to replace inadequate housing and build the new housing needed by our expanding population, some thirty-one million new units are required. We estimate that less than two-thirds of that requirement will indeed be built. Worse. What happens later? Do we not build at all? One might as well prepare a dirge for America’s funeral.
    Palm Coast will be neither a “sudden city’ nor an ‘instant’ one but will grow in accordance with a pre-planned program, no matter whether it flourishes twenty, thirty, or forty years from now. Palm Coast is a strip of land thirty miles long at its longest, ten miles wide at its widest, covering approximately

    160 square miles.

    It is a fact that under the controls we will institute, despite its being larger in extent than Detroit or Philadelphia, it will have a density of say, Beverly Hills, California. But more on this later. Palm Coast has about six miles of ocean front, approximately twenty miles on the Intracoastal Waterway, and will have significant man made water areas. Again, these will be reviewed in the main body of the text.
    Now to a brief description of the terrain. Like other areas along the east coast of Florida, the property was formed primarily by sand dunes that have been build up by the interaction of winds, waves, tidal cycles, and ocean currents. This continued accretion of land as a repetitive process has caused the creation of lagoons between the new dune and the existing land mass. It is from these lagoon that the present salt water lagoons and marshlands evolved.
    Page 129

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