|

Editorial Letters – Week ending March 1, 2019

Longboat Key News encourages Letters to the Editor on timely issues. Please email to: letters@lbknews.com or mail to PO Box 8001, Longboat Key, FL 34228. We also print letters sent to Town Hall that address Longboat Key issues. We reserve the right to edit.

Street light plan looking ugly

To: Editor

I am a resident of Longboat Key living at Bowsprit Lane, Country Club Shores. It has been brought to my attention that consideration is being given to putting 45 feet tall concrete poles for the street lighting along GMD and 35 feet tall concrete poles for the street lighting in the neighborhoods.

I wish to voice my strong opposition to both these proposals as my opinion is that they will look extremely ugly. I was in favor of the undergrounding for two reasons. Firstly, to beautify our wonderful island, and secondly to protect our electricity supply from adverse weather conditions. Introducing these proposed poles will have the opposite affect on the first reason.

I would kindly ask for these pole proposals to be rejected and replaced by the smaller and more elegant poles that we the residents were expecting.

Hugh Templeton

Longboat Key

 

This is wrong…

To: Editor

We voted to improve the lighting.  This is wrong, wrong, wrong!

Bev Shapiro

Longboat Key

 

Reader Comment on Proposed Light Poles

To: Editor

We were very dismayed to learn that light poles taller and thicker than our current light poles are being proposed for GMD and LBK’s neighborhoods.

Various surveys of LBK residents have shown a strong/universal preference for short, decorative poles, an approach that would be consistent with the very expensive undergrounding plan that is underway for the Town.

We urge your readers to contact Town officials asking them to ensure that 15-foot tall decorative lights are installed in the neighborhoods, and that attractive poles no taller than 25 feet are installed on GMD.  It is important to all of us that we avoid the “industrialization” of our visual landscape with out-sized light poles.

Thanks for your continued reporting on issues of importance to our community.

Henry and Donna Rae Smith

Longboat Key

 

Street light poles

To: Editor

Apparently the will of LBK residents for light pole esthetics may be sacrificed thrice vertically (45’ consultant advised pole height vs. 15-foot resident desired pole height).

Apparently, for the efficiency of cameras to be mounted on top. And what is the purpose of these cameras? We already have cameras at either end of our 10-mile island, I fear more cameras is an unnecessary, obtrusive intrusion on our privacy!

Joseph Iannello

Longboat Key

 

Street lights – neighborhoods

To: Editor

I would like to suggest that 15-foot decorative lights to create a neighborhood ambiance as found in most planned developments on this Key and nation-wide.

Gail & Des Wyer

Longboat Key

 

Street light pole height urgency

To: Keep Longboat Special Neighbors and Friends

Street Lights – GMD

The street light poles for GMD that are now being presented by the town are 45 feet tall (much taller than the existing GMD poles) and made of concrete with highway style lights attached. Just a few months ago the poles were described as 27’ 2” tall. Apparently the additional height is needed to get adequate coverage for the cameras and antennas for better cell reception.

Residents voted for undergrounding to beautify GMD. We don’t think 45’ concrete poles with 16” diameters and attachments at the tops (acting as small cell towers) are appropriate for Longboat Key. St. Armands has gorgeous 15-foot tall decorative street lights and no tall poles. Wouldn’t it be great to have these same, or similar, street lights for both GMD and the neighborhoods? We can do better than what is being planned for us.

A couple of the commissioners showed some concern about these proposed poles at last Tuesday’s workshop when the consultant’s report was presented. Now is the time for citizens to speak up.

Street Lights – Neighborhoods

The street light poles that were presented by the town for the neighborhoods are now 35 feet tall (taller than the existing poles).  Just a few months ago the poles were described to be 25 feet tall. As with GMD, the additional height is said to be needed to get adequate coverage for the cameras and antennas.

Residents voted for undergrounding the neighborhoods to help beautify them. In our Keep survey last year there was overwhelming support (94 percent) for 15-foot decorative lights to create a neighborhood ambiance as found in most planned developments on this Key and nation-wide. Lets try to get the street lights and poles we desire and expected.

Now is the time to voice your opinions on both the GMD and neighborhood street light plans. Contact the commissioners and Town Manager. Make your opinions known to the newspapers. Their email addresses are as follows:

gspoll@longboatkey.org (Mayor)

jbrown@longboatkey.org (Commissioner before Mar 12)

mhaycock@longboatkey.org (Commissioner after Mar 12)

jdaly@longboatkey.org (Commissioner)

ipastor@longboatkey.org (Commissioner)

rclair@longboatkey.org (Commissioner)

kschneier@longboatkey.org (Commissioner)

ezunz@longboatkey.org (Vice Mayor)

tharmer@longboatkey.org (Longboat Key town manager)

mwalsh@yourobserver.com (Longboat Observer editor)

sreid@lbknews.com (Longboat Key News editor)

Mote Scientific Referendum

There is a referendum on the Mar 12 ballot to rezone a 1.8-acre parcel of property at 5630 GMD from commercial to residential. We think a ‘Yes’ vote on this referendum is appropriate since seven residential units on the 1.8 acres will have minimal impact on Longboat Key. Let’s help Mote.

Lots more great information on this Mote referendum can be obtained at: https://lbk.votemotescientific.com/

Keep Longboat Special – Street Light Committee

Bob McRae

Jill Nemeth

Joe Nemeth

Carla Rowan

Pete Rowan

Peg Stanton

Madeline Stewart

 

Strategy needed for red tide

To: Editor

We cannot afford to be plagued with red tide and it’s important to know all that’s being done to attack the problem.

Marina Slater

Sunset Realty

Sarasota

 

Parking on Broadway

To: Editor

Commissioner Zunz states that he was advised that, “Valet Parking is permitted on public streets where parking is allowed.” The issue that Ms Melanie Barber raises is that the Valet Parking is done for the restaurant patrons. This is while the restaurant is supposed to provide its own parking for its patrons on its own grounds, its own parking lot, not on the street. The restaurant does not have enough parking for its employees and patrons. I wander who gave this advise to Commissioner Zunz?

Street parking is for the residents, not for the restaurant. Restaurant parking is choking the neighborhood. Business is supposed to provide parking for its patrons and employees. Wait until the restaurant under construction opens, they will be parking on car transport carriers. One transport carrier or more will be blocking Lands end entrance, just wait.

Samir Ragheb, M.D.

Longboat Key

 

Wastewater damage by Verizon contractor

To: Town Commission

I was notified that the Verizon contractor working on Gulf of Mexico Drive damaged the Town’s sewer line. The Town installed a bypass pump until the contractor makes the repair. This work is not related to the Town’s undergrounding project and was permitted directly through the State for work in their right of way.

There have been several other issues related to the contractor’s operation since they started construction last week. We have met with the contractor to review expectations and communications for their continued work. We will be invoicing them for all staff time and effort related to this incident.

Tom Harmer

Town Manager

Longboat Key

 

Wastewater damage by Verizon contractor

To: Town Manager Tom Harmer

Here is a quick summary.  We have a by-pass pump in place until the contractor gets the pipe repaired.  Estimated repair completion Wednesday, Feb. 27.  We will invoice contractor for all Town time and effort related to this event:

The contractor for Verizon damaged a sewer line on 2/22/19 at 5250 GMD (Town bypassed and instructed Glenn Hartmann of Overland Construction to schedule repairs). The contractor did not pot hole to locate underground utilities.  Instructed Glenn that all underground utilities must be pot holed and utilities located be for direction drilling is performed.

Isaac Brownman

Director Public Works

Longboat Key

 

Too tall light poles

To: Commissioner Ed Zunz

Ed, we already have good cell phone reception along GMD. I cannot see a need for additional delivery systems to augment adequate existing antennas.

As for the proposed ugly light too tall poles now being pushed upon our community by the commission, you and the other commissions it seems did not listen when a citizen pointed out the fallacy of selling the awesome beautification of undergrounding to taxpayers, only to be replaced with even more and even higher poles, and to add to the increased ugliness, hundreds of unattractive yard wharts, called transformers, all along GMD. You have made things more unattractive and raised everyone’s taxes to do it. Is that successful government?

Gene Jaleski

Longboat Key

 

GMD & Neighborhood Lighting

To: Commissioner Schneier

As a long-time Longboat Key resident I implore you to relook at the heights for the revised street lighting on both GMD and in the neighborhoods. The reason the voters passed the undergrounding was to “beautify” Longboat.

I understand the GMD lighting that is now being presented by the town is at 45 feet (much taller than the existing GMD poles) and will be made of concrete with highway style lights attached. Just a few months ago these poles were described as 27 feet 2 inches.

And, the neighborhood street light poles that are being presented by the town for the neighborhoods are now 35 feet (taller than the existing poles).  Just a few months ago the poles were described to be 25 feet.

Both the 45-foot GMD and 35-foot neighborhood poles, as suggested in the Town’s revisions, exceed the allowable maximum height of residential buildings on Longboat Key.

Residents voted for undergrounding the neighborhoods to help beautify them. In the published Keep survey last year there was overwhelming support (94 percent) for 15-foot decorative lights to create a neighborhood ambiance as found in most current and planned developments on this Key and nationwide.

This is a huge concern and the town government needs to reevaluate these heights and get in sync with what the voters want. Take another look, Commissioner Schneier, these new heights are ridiculous.

Kimberly Ross

Longboat Key

 

GMD & Neighborhood Lighting

To: Kimberly Ross

Please know that we are studying the height, composition and spacing of all new poles and other structures with the purpose of arriving at the best aesthetic result that permits required functions.  Nothing has been decided yet and everyone’s view is being carefully considered.  Please stay tuned.

Ken Schneier

Commissioner

Longboat Key

Tags: , , ,

Longboat Key News

Leave a Reply