Controversial Lido Pool & Pavilion plan heads back to City

Editor & Publisher

The plan to redevelop the Lido Beach Pool and Pavilion into a waterfront restaurant, tiki bar, and pool area serving alcohol is heading to the Sarasota City Planning Board on Sept. 12 and then likely the Commission on Oct. 15.

The City approved a lease last winter to allow a 200-seat restaurant to be developed on the site by the owners of the Daiquiri Deck.

Presently, a small concession stand operates but the deferred maintenance to the overall facility led to the city undertaking a process to redevelop or renovate the site. That is what the applicants propose to do.

But the restaurant and the proposed bar have proven to be offensive to no less than 3,200 petitioners as well as the neighborhood association, area hoteliers and the majority of the packed commission chambers that watched when the commission approved the lease to the owners of the Daiquiri Deck for the site.

The lease allows the operators to keep the restaurant open nightly until 10 p.m., far past when the beach is used.

The tenants will pay the city about $80,000 per year with annual escalations to use the site. The lease is for 10 years with an additional 20-year option. That lease is approved and done and the only step remaining is the approval by the commission of what is called a Major Conditional Use.

The Planning Board at its meeting on Sept. 12 will hear staff recommend approval of the Major Conditional Use according to City Planner Dan Greenberg.

Greenberg told Longboat Key News that the staff looked at the proposal from the considerations of zoning, site plan, and applicable regulations, and with some modifications made by the applicant, approval will be recommended.

The proposed restaurant exceeds what in zoning can be considered a minor accessory use simply supporting hungry beachgoers. It is this change from a concession stand and this expansion of commercial activity that requires the Major Conditional Use and specific criteria required for approval.

The applicant has added some parking to the site, said Greenberg and has strived to separate the tiki bar and alcohol activities from the child play areas and splash pools. Greenberg added that the site plan offers two different designs for the pool area that could be considered by the Sarasota City Commission.

Meanwhile, the petition and a mailing that has gone to Lido residents asking them to Google: Petition/SaveLido Pavilion, has garnered the 3,200 signatures as of Aug. 31.

The petition asks that the commission keeps the whole beach open to the public, protects the wildlife especially nesting sea turtles and sea birds, and to prevent additional traffic, “rowdy late night crowds and the increased need for police presence.”

The petition urges residents to attend the Planning Board Meeting at 6 p.m. on Sept. 12 in City Hall of Sarasota at 1565 First Street, Sarasota.

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Longboat Key News

1 Response for “Controversial Lido Pool & Pavilion plan heads back to City”

  1. Rod Boag says:

    We have been visiting Lido beach on vacation from Scotland for many years now. We have stayed also in Naples, Fort Myers Beach, Clearwater Beach and Sanibel and visited a number of different seaside lo actions and beaches on your beautiful Gulf Coast. In the 12 years we have been coming it is Lido Beach that we look forward to most. Lido Beach is unique, family friendly and a significant part of that is due to its unspoilt state and the appropriate size of the facilities and concession stand. On our visit last November we learned of the plan for this shocking development and struggled to believe that anyone could consider the proposals as being an improvement. As total neutrals who have a more detached view than residents we strongly feel it should stay unspoiled. If not the entire character of the area will be changed for the worse and a great facility will be forever lost.

    Rod and Mairi Boag

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