New Public Parks Eyed in Northeast Venice


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, April 12th, 2017 – Public park facilities, long in the wish list of folks in northeast Venice, is a need soon to be filled and, in the process, also help spur market interest in old and new communities in this fast-growing part of south Sarasota County.

One project that the city government of Venice is now exploring is a dog park and pickle ball court in a privately owned land at 2203 Knights Trail Road, which is currently sales-listed for $2.1 million. This site’s northern boundary abuts the junction of Knights Trail and Gene Green Road bordering the new Toscana Isles community.

Venice Mayor John Holic is exploring the possibility of Sarasota County purchasing the land, with the city contributing park impact fees to help develop this property. Significantly, this site is also just north of a planned workforce housing, John Nolen Gardens, where a 4.5-acre is also on the drawing boards. This raises the possibility of having a park of close to 15 acres if the John Nolen Gardens’ community park is deeded to the city of Venice and it is combined with the Knights Trail‒Green Trail park.

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Currently, the only major park in northeast Venice is the 70-acre Myakka River Park, which was developed along with the platting of the Venetian Golf and River Club. Under a master plan drafted last year, several other city properties in this locality have already been identified for possible development as smaller parks.

One of these is a six-acre property off Laurel Oaks Road and northeast of Knights Trail, which is north of Toscana Isles and near Nokomis Groves. Venice also owns a 1.5-acre site for possible park development on the southeast corner of Edmonson and Pinebrook roads next to the golf community of Waterford.

That next step in the implementation of the Venice parks master plan will be coordinated with Sarasota County. The county, under a joint agreement with Venice, oversees parks in the city, the largest of which is the 160-acre Wellfield Park.

Other initiatives suggested in the master plan include providing picnic benches and shade trees along Venetian Waterway Park and upgrades at the city’s beach parks. Likewise under consideration is the repurposing of Centennial Park as an urban park with an adjacent parking garage.

Private Recreational Facilities

The establishment on new public park facilities in northeast Venice would be a fitting complement to amenities either planned or already existing in the private communities at this locality. At Toscana Isles, for example, prospective home buyers are being enticed by the community’s man-made lake, dog park, and tennis/bocce courts.

The homes are as attractively priced in this community as well. The price points at Toscana Isles start at the upper $200s for new builds with floor plans of 1,641‒1,816 square feet featuring two bedrooms and two baths.

At the older community of Sorrento Woods, the home choices and amenities are as remarkable. This community off Laurel Road boasts of its own 10-acre nature park featuring a complete picnic facility, gazebo, and boat ramp.

Homes for sale at Sorrento Woods are typically priced from the $300s and come with floor plans ranging from 1,870 up to 2,464 square feet designed with three bedrooms. These homes were built around the late 1980s and the 1990s but remain competitive in the market, more so now that additional public park facilities are in the pipeline in their northeast Venice neighborhood.