Timeline: History of Guana Lake, Guana Preserve and Outpost property.
GTM-NERR created this timeline, presented below in three parts. Emphasis (in red) added by Save Guana Now to place the Outpost property within historical context.
Ponte Vedra Corporation's acquisition of the Outpost property took place in 1982 when its President, Herb Peyton, purchased the Guana Peninsula. Two years later, he sold the 11,000-acre tract to the state for $49 million, but first carved out the 99-acre parcel known as the Outpost and excluded it from the transaction despite the state's request to include it. (Scroll down to continue.)
GTM-NERR was established in 1999. One year later, the Outpost property received Conservation status. Ponte Vedra Corporation did not dispute this designation and thereafter paid low taxes commensurate with Conservation land.
In 2016, the Ponte Vedra Corporation submited an application for a PUD (Planned Unit Development) to be built on the Outpost property even though it is Conservation land, 97% surrounded by GTM-NERR. That same year, Save Guana Now formed in opposition to development of the Outpost, and then PVC sued St. Johns County. In 2018, a judge denied the corporation's request for an administrative (behind closed doors) ruling on the property's designation and ordered that PVC must go to public hearings in its attempt to change the designation of the 80 acres of the Outpost's uplands from Conservation to Residential.
In January 2019, Ponte Vedra Corporation chose not to appeal the judge's ruling and is expected to go to hearings to fight for the Outpost property's change from Conservation to Residential. Save Guana Now has retained an attorney and a land use consultant to fight a change in designation of the Outpost property which would open it up to development of 66 proposed homes.
Following an April 16 settlement agreement on the lawsuit (that involved no concessions from the county), PVC submitted an application to the county, and public hearings are scheduled for August 15, 2019 (PZA) and September 17th (BCC). Save Guana Now urgently calls on the public to attend these meetings to oppose development of the Outpost.
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