The Deer Run subdivision was founded in 1971. It is located off Red Bug Lake Road in southwestern Seminole County. While the majority of the subdivision has a mailing address in the city of Casselberry (with a few pockets of Winter Springs), much of the subdivision resides in unincorporated Seminole County.
The original housing tract was created by a developer named Dick Bond. He hired Bako Construction to build houses along the far side of Eagle Circle near Swallow Drive, Dew Drop Cove, and Laurel Way. At that time, there was no Eagle Circle South! This area--indeed, the entire housing development before a 'Deer Run' even existed--was named Sterling Park (known today as Sterling Park I). The Sterling Park Homeowner's Association (SPHOA) was founded to represent, regulate, and manage the interests of the community in just that part of the subdivision. Today, now known as the Sterling Park Housing Association, it represents about 391 homes, and is the largest and oldest HOA in the subdivision. A second phase of housing was added to the original tract by 1978 (Sterling Park II). A third tract (Sterling Park III) and a forth tract (Sterling Park IV) followed in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Today more than 528 homes are a part of the Sterling Park neighborhood. It was this neighborhood that gave its name to our elementary school when it opened in 1974.
Between the late 1970s and early 2000s, Deer Run exploded in a series of new housing developments. Each development has its own distinct name, personality, and homeowner’s association.
The subdivision contains many different neighborhoods, both gated and ungated: more than two dozen in all!
These neighborhoods include:
Club House Point
Deer Pointe *
Deer Run Court
Deer Run Cove
Fairway Oaks at Deer Run
Hunter's Chase Condominiums at Deer Run*
Pine Song Cove
Pine Tree Village
Sterling Park IV
The Terraces at Deer Run
The Village at Deer Run
Villas at Deer Run
*The three neighborhoods with stars are technically not a part of the legal entity known as the Deer Run Planned Development. However, they are included in this list as these neighborhoods are in close proximity to the more than two dozen neighborhoods that exist in the P.D. They also share similar concerns regarding schools, roads, drainage, etc.
To this day, there is no single homeowner’s association that represents all the residents who live in what is now considered the Deer Run subdivision.
Almost 25 separate HOA's govern their respective neighborhoods in the Deer Run P.D. Two property owners associations (Deer Run Property Association #1 and Deer Run Property Association #2) are comprised of smaller groupings of some of the HOAs for common goals such as landscaping, drainage upkeep, and maintenance of signage. But again, none of the POAs represent everyone and their purpose is limited to a specific set of predetermined tasks as outlined in their individual charters.
One of the most significant things that has consistently unified all these different neighborhoods is their proximity to the golf course. It was originally known as the Deer Run Country Club. The course was built in the mid-1970s as a nine-hole golf course as a part of what is known as a Planned Unit Development (PUD). Today, in 2020, this zoning designation is now known as a Planned Development (PD).
A Planned Development (PD) is a zoning designation. As quoted from Section 30.441 of the Seminole County Land Development Code, "The Planned Development (PD) district is intended to facilitate various development types, and combinations thereof, that may be difficult to achieve under conventional zoning regulations. Planned developments shall promote flexibility and creativity in addressing changing social, economic and market conditions, especially where they are used to implement adopted policies of the Comprehensive Plan. Examples of development concepts that may be appropriate for PD zoning include, but are not limited to, enhanced protection of natural resource areas, mixed use or transit oriented development, and infill development or redevelopment."
The total acreage of the Deer Run Planned Development is 1038.30. According to the Seminole County Land Development Code, 25% of a PD must remain green or open space. The Deer Run PD currently contains 262.11 acres of open or green space. The golf course currently encompasses approximately 2/3 of the open/green space in the PD. According to the Seminole County Land Development Code, a minimum of 259.57 acres must remain open/green space. This requirement has protected the land the golf course currently occupies for many years when other owners have wanted to develop it in the past. However, it is possible that a PD covenant can be amended or overturned by the County Commission if a majority of the five-member board votes to rezone or approve a major land use change to the PD. If the current covenant in place is overturned, there is likely no limit as to what the land could be used for when it comes to residential development.
On January 22, 2019, Seminole County Commissioner Bob Dallari (District 1) informed the rest of the county commissioners that he had been contacted by a representative of Robert Dello Russo. Mr. Dello Russo is the current owner of the golf course. His company, The Golf Group < http://www.golfgroupfl.com/> (also known as Golf Enterprises of Central Florida), bought the country club in 2002 for $1.5 million. They spent an additional several million dollars renovating the golf course and country club. However, as has been the case with so many golf courses in both Florida and throughout the nation, it has become harder to turn a profit. We suspect this is one of the reasons that Mr. Dello Russo has decided to close the golf course. Commissioner Dallari informed the board of commissioners that the owner plans to close the golf course by the end of June 2019 and sell the land to developers.
You can view Commissioner Dallari’s report at the URL below:
The part that references Deer Run is under the Commissioner's Report (District 1- Dallari). It begins at approximately the 51:00 minute mark and goes to the 1:03 minute mark.
Unfortunately, the days of the Country Club at Deer Run existing as an active and functioning golf course are numbered! It officially closed for business on Memorial Day in May 2019.
While we wish the golf course could remain open, we know that is almost an impossible thing. That's why we formed our Citizen's Action Group. Our group was formed to fight the further development of this land. With over more than a hundred plus acres that could be developed, it is theoretically possible that all types of housing could be built, from single-family homes to multi-family dwellings, like apartment complexes, condos, or townhouses.
Simply put, we believe that Deer Run can’t afford or sustain this additional development. We are fighting to keep our undeveloped spaces open and green!
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