Longboater fears traffic from new Manatee development

Editor & Publisher

The impact of traffic is perhaps the strongest concern Longboaters and neighboring communities have when a new development is proposed.

In some cases, even if the development is lauded for its amenities or attractiveness, the potential burden of additional traffic outweighs the pluses for fear of congestion and erosion of the quality of life. That scenario played out last Thursday when the proposed Peninsula Bay development was in front of the Manatee County Planning board.

The development, which connects directly to west Cortez Road, received a 5 to 1 vote recommending approval by the planning board. But for Longboater Larry Grossman, the approach to traffic is far too piecemeal and disparate to responsibly allow the approval to go forward.

“There has only been fragmented traffic planning. Longboat has urged FDOT to do a study and all of these concerns should be part of a truly comprehensive approach to transportation for West Bradenton and the beach communities,” said Grossman following the meeting.

At the meeting, planners and area residents praise the design and environmental protections the proposed Peninsula Bay development makes for Palma Sola Bay.

The plan seeks to allow Manatee Fruit Company to convert the site of its tree farm and greenhouse operations on nearly 359 acres between Cortez Road and Palma Sola Bay into a New Urbanism style community.

Commissioner Matt Bower cast the dissenting vote citing the lack of a comprehensive traffic plan.

The County Commission will consider the advisory panel’s recommendation and make the final decision on Sept. 1.

Straddling 115th Street West, Peninsula Bay proposes up to 1,950 homes (150 in a residential hotel), 90,000 square feet of commercial and office space, dry storage for 200 boats, a marina basin with a county boat ramp and a bed-and-breakfast inn with eight rooms.

The traffic generated could amount to 16,000 daily trips on Cortez Road.

“The development looks nice,” said Grossman, “but the question of transportation was left to the last minute. The existing infrastructure is limited and can only take so much. The beaches can only take so much from the impact of vehicular traffic. This should not go forward without a true plan in place for the traffic.”



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3 Responses for “Longboater fears traffic from new Manatee development”

  1. Judy Goldstein says:

    Approval of this plan would only make a terrible situation unbearable. The traffic backup when trying to gain access to Cortez Road in season is stultifying. You can sit there forever. Why do people deliberately set out to ruin our paradise? Oh, excuse me! I forgot. It’s so that big developers can make even more money and become bigger! You can be sure that they won’t be sitting in on those roads in Season. They will be elsewhere, looking for ways to mess up other once-quiet and peaceful country roads.

  2. ghostrider says:

    Perhaps residents need to understand the scale involved here. You have one hundred single-family homes in Emerald Harbor and Dream Island Road combined. The proposed development will increase that density fifty times. Try scaling that on graph paper.

  3. ghostrider says:


    Folks, it all sounds too good to be true.
    Two lanes in, two lanes out. What could go wrong ?
    When do we start “pitching” the new real estate ?

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