A Lake County homeowner is taking her developer to court this week, saying her community never built the equestrian center promised when she moved in in 2007.
Sara MacKenzie still has the brochure from when she moved into the Sullivan Ranch community in Mount Dora. Along with lush, rolling hills it promises, “horses grazing near our privately-owned equestrian center.” The site plan shows its location near the clubhouse.
“It was going to be a two-story center with an office, stables and paddocks," MacKenzie said.
Today you’ll find double fencing for a riding area along the front of the Mt. Dora community, but no horses or equestrian center.
That’s prompted MacKenzie to file suit against Centex, the builder of the community. She said they’ve had ample time and with more than 500 homes, Sullivan Ranch is nearing build-out completion.
MacKenzie said after talking to neighbors she’s discovered an addendum in new homeowners' contracts that leads her to believe the builder no longer has any plans of building the equestrian center. She said those documents say planning has been approved for multi-family apartments that she believes will replace the equestrian center.
“I think they would simply save $1 million from not having to build it, and they can sell the land for another stack of money,” MacKenzie said.
Centex’s attorney said he couldn’t comment on pending litigation, but said the company, "vehemently denies any and all allegations."
MacKenzie said she was met with cease and desist letters when she first tried to notify neighbors of the situation, with the HOA saying she was breaking soliciting rules. So she’s taken to social media, where she’s getting plenty of support. Dozens of neighbors said they plan to attend the hearing before a Lake County judge Tuesday morning.