Polk County neighbors upset over proposed gas station

Posted at 9:22 PM, Jul 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-20 21:23:34-04

A proposed gas station for a Davenport neighborhood has residents fuming.
The neighborhood sits near Ronald Regan Parkway and Pine Tree Trail and currently is entirely residential.
People living there say they are afraid of smelly fuel, endless traffic and concerned about local wildlife.

“I will be looking at my bathroom window from my house and seeing a gas station,” Joanne Quinnonez, a neighbor said.

Quinnonez has been living in her Davenport home since 2007. She chose the area because of the rural atmosphere, low traffic and crime.
But Quinnonez wasn’t so sure that will stay the same if a 24 hour gas station moves in next-door.

“Cars stopping in the gas station, pulling out; tanker trucks coming in and filling up,” Quinnoez repeated her concerns about the possible store.

According to Polk County Land Development, the acreage is zoned for mixed-use and has been since 2002. This means that a developer can use the land for residential purposes or commercial.

The owner of that land is AK Oakmont LLC. The development company owns more than 180 properties currently in Polk County, buying this parcel in 2013.

Most recently, pink signs were posted and notices went out to homeowners living within 500 feet of the site, sparking both outrage and a movement lead by neighbors.

Ruben Ortiz, is one of the neighbors who is on board to fight and has already signed a petition to get rid of the proposal.

“As soon as I saw the paper, I say no, this cannot happen.” Ortiz said.

Ortiz moved to the area 14 years ago hoping for the same piece and quiet.

He said when he moved to the area, there weren’t many plans for development, but realizes that is changing.

“It's good for the people who doesn't live around here but people live around here especially behind it's not sounds good to me,” Ortiz added.

Residents are also concerned about the wildlife.
As the parcel is positioned right next to conservation land.

“It’s going to impact the wildlife,” Quinnonez said.

A hearing for the proposed gas station is schedule for the morning of August 2nd in Bartow.

Concerned citizens are invited and plan on showing up to show their dismay for the project.

ABC Action News reached out to AK Oakmont LLC, but have not yet received an answer.