OSCEOLA COUNTY, FL – As more companies invest in converting old hotels along 192 in the Osceola County Tourist District to affordable workforce housing, county commission establishes new standards for Monday night living conditions.
“For example, you have to have a kitchen,” County State Commissioner Viviana Jaynor said earlier this month. “A lot of these motel rooms don’t have a kitchen and they put a hot plate and call it an apartment, that just isn’t going to be enough.”
However, Chad Booth says the hotel accommodation apartment he found in Maingate Village’s new apartments, the former Red Lion Hotel, goes beyond any apartment he has found at a price he can afford.
“I can understand standards, but when you have a business that goes above and beyond. Love it, the apartments are great, ”said Booth. “It’s actually better than some of the newer buildings I’ve seen.”
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Booth lives in a one-bedroom apartment, which consisted of two hotel rooms converted into one, paying $ 1,200 in rent, including water and cable.
“It doesn’t look like an old hotel,” he added. “For what I paid downtown, it was about the same and I have more space. They totally updated the floors, brand new kitchen, new appliances.
Rental agent Corey Jonas gave News 6 a peek inside, where there was no hotplate to see. Instead, there was a full kitchen with stainless steel appliances – even in the smaller 350-square-foot studio that was rented for $ 950 a month.
“The concept works,” Jonas said. “Because a lot of people can’t believe what they’re paying for when they get here. “
It also works – a few miles from Walt Disney World, local restaurants, and gift shops – perfect for nearby workers.
Maingate Village Apartments owner T2 Investments is currently working on converting two other hotels into workforce housing in the area. Company officials said they have yet to see the standards recommended by the Osceola County commission.
Standards set by county commissioners set out guidelines for these buildings, requiring a percentage of non-residential areas and green space, as well as structural and appearance regulations.
No word if a vote will take place on Monday evening.
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