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DeBary to halt new apartments for retail near SunRail station

Recent development proposals are not aligning with that vision

DEBARY, Fla. – A boom to a city in Volusia County has council members putting a halt to residential development. DeBary council members are proposing an eight-month moratorium to keep developers from building more apartments along U.S. 17-92 near the SunRail station.

City Council members said they did not receive any proposals for retail or commercial development to cater to the hundreds of families expected to move in within the next few years. The 289 Exchange apartments are set to open in about a month within walking distance from the SunRail station, but some people argue there aren’t any retailers in the area.

“A Town Center is very much needed to give it the proper atmosphere with the movie theater and the restaurants and so forth,” DeBary Councilman Stephen Bacon said.

The recent development proposals are not aligning with that vision.

“I spend my money outside of DeBary and most of the people here do,” said Bacon.

This is why Bacon and the other council members say a moratorium is necessary. It will prevent residential development in the Transit-Oriented Development Overlay district for at least eight months. The district lies just east of the DeBary SunRail station off U.S. 17-92.

Some people have mixed feelings about the situation.

“We didn’t see anything a new Dairy Queen down the street, that’s the best there is around here,” Pam Kaiser said.

“DeBary is growing. There’s a lot of stuff going on. You have the train, but there’s really no place to stop to do anything, the traffic is also a concern,” Glisselle Camareno said.

Others don’t want any major commercial development in the area.

“I don’t mind having to go a little out of the way for shopping because I like to keep the small-town feel,” Cindy Bricker said.

The city council hopes the moratorium will start a conversation with developers and bring in more interest in retail space.

The moratorium can go into effect as soon as Wednesday during a special city council meeting after a second reading and vote.

The meeting takes place at 6:30 p.m. inside council chambers on Colomba Road in DeBary.