Multiple East Navarre Property Owners Seek to Use U.S. 98 Commercial Property for Housing Developments

Posted on September 1, 2021 by Romi White

The Santa Rosa County Zoning Board on September 9 will hear two agenda requests from U.S. 98 property owners who seek to use commercial property on U.S. 98 in East Navarre for future residential housing.

Derek Waters is seeking a conditional use to allow multiple family dwelling structures within a highway commercial development zoning district on roughly 13.37 acres he owns on U.S. 98 which extends back to Timber Lane. The property is currently zoned highway commercial district and contains a mobile home park.

For Phase I of the development, Waters aims to put up to two dozen single family residences off Timber Lane. That development would not have direct ingress to or egress from U.S. 98 and would be accessed off Timber Lane.

However, he does plan to utilize U.S. 98 for a 220-unit multi-family housing development.

Maggie Hammond emailed the county to oppose Waters’ request.

“I feel like there is something wrong here. They are trying to block the highway. And I feel this is deliberate. They know exactly what they are doing and someone needs to investigate this. There is no need to put apartments on the highway also it is dangerous for children,” Hammond said.

A second request for multiple property owners, including Carlee and Nick Foster of Fort Walton Beach and the Jack Kirby Trust, seeks a conditional use to allow four single family residences within a portion of a highway commercial zoning district.

The proposed site is located within two adjoining waterfront parcels, totaling around 15.4 acres and located at 8997 Navarre Parkway. Both parcels are currently vacant and include HCD zoning on U.S. 98.

Documents submitted to the county indicate plans for two commercial outparcels on U.S. 98; however, a subdivision of about three dozen single family residences is planned south of those outparcels, and the request, if approved, would allow around four future home sites within the HCD.

The zoning board will hear both agenda items and make a recommendation to Santa Rosa County Commissioners, who will make the decision at a future rezoning meeting.

The meeting is scheduled for 6-9 p.m., Thursday, September 9 at the Santa Rosa County Administrative Complex, located at 6495 Caroline Street in Milton.