Court once again sides with residents in Calusa development fight

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – Residents of the Calusa neighborhood in southwest Miami-Dade have scored another huge win.

A state appeals court Wednesday once again sided with residents fighting a developer’s plan to build hundreds of homes on a former golf course.

A court previously ruled in favor of residents back in November.

Residents there had asked that the county’s original zoning decision be quashed because there wasn’t proper notice.

The latest decision means developers have to start from scratch and ask the county for approval.

Many residents opposed the plan because of concerns over traffic congestion, lack of infrastructure and the environment.

Residents argued multiple protected bird species nested there, which state officials confirmed.

The issue is now back in the hands of the developer, who can re-submit the proposal.

The area was originally under a covenant that restricted its use to a golf course for 100 years. But, under the terms of that covenant, the people with homes bordering the area could vote to lift that covenant.

The developer paid those owners and the covenant was lifted.

Court opinion:


About the Authors:

In January 2017, Hatzel Vela became the first local television journalist in the country to move to Cuba and cover the island from the inside. During his time living and working in Cuba, he covered some of the most significant stories in a post-Fidel Castro Cuba. 

Cody Weddle joined Local 10 News as a full-time reporter in South Florida in August of 2022. Before that, Cody worked regularly with Local 10 since January of 2017 as a foreign correspondent in Venezuela and Colombia.