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Editorial Letters – Week ending May 31, 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.

Pickleball Court Location

To: Town Commission, Town Manager Tom Harmer

Review of the Town Staff Pickleball Court proposal, earmarked for the parking lot used for Tennis Courts 7 – 10 raises several issues.  To accommodate 4 clay courts there are currently 22 designated parking spots (I counted), one of which is for Handicapped Only.  It is not unusual to find all parking spots in use, plus a couple of extra cars squeezed into non-designated spots.

As per Attachment A, 4 Pickleball courts located as proposed would eliminate 20 of the 22 parking spots, while simultaneously increasing player participation and a corresponding increase in demand for parking spots.  Only 2 currently designated parking spots, one of which is and must be Handicapped Only, would be left to accommodate a doubling of courts to 8 total. More courts and virtually no parking are not logical.

Noise generated by Pickleball and some other newly developing similar games versus that generated by tennis was recently considered by the Planning and Zoning Board, with a recommendation to be forwarded to the Town Commission that noise attenuation relative to Pickleball, (but, not tennis) be provided where deemed necessary.  Since the proposed location is adjacent to a residence, noise attenuation equipment would likely be required.

Rather than locate Pickleball Courts at the Tennis Center, it is proposed herein that both existing Bayfront Park courts be converted to Pickleball only, for a total of 4 courts at that location, and that 2 new Tennis Courts be constructed adjacent to existing courts 9 and 10, but behind the Longboat Key Library, as shown on Attachment A.  The courts could either be clay or hard, but if hard – free to the public, albeit subject to reservation via the Tennis Center.  This would initially consume 10 parking spots behind the Library, but 5 to 6 could be regained via new parking along the west side of the Library, for a net loss of only 4 or 5 spots versus the net loss of 20 much more valuable spots on the east side of courts 7 – 10.  Another advantage of this arrangement would be tennis court availability during the peak season when there is high demand and for Town sponsored Tournaments, either for at least warm-up if hard or actual use if clay, which really appears to be the better overall option vis-à-vis revenue generation and activity.

Since tennis would be the only continuing activity at the Tennis Center, there would be no need for any noise attenuation, and since there are no residences near the Bayfront Pickleball Courts-to be, there would also be no need for noise attenuation there either. The location behind the Library could also be used for the 4 proposed Pickleball Courts and would appear preferable to that currently proposed, but that would require noise attenuation equipment and not offer the advantages associated with tennis as just noted.

Another site taken into consideration for new court location of any type was the Town Center/Amore property, as depicted in Attachment B.  That does not appear feasible due to potential costs associated with terrain management (i.e., the gulch and a possible need to bridge or encase it) or due to other plans in play therefore.  Even “nibbling at the edges” of this property would in a likelihood not be well received.

Part of our Town’s prestigious reputation is associated with our outstanding Tennis Center, and the Tournaments hosted thereby only serve to further enhance it.  There is obviously an increasing demand for Pickleball facilities in our community, and we should accommodate this demand, but let’s do it in such a manner that does not do so at the expense of our other highly valuable and esteemed facilities, which could occur given the Town Staff proposal.

Phillip Younger

Planning and Zoning Board

Longboat Key

 

Pickleball courts at the Town Tennis Center

To: Town Commission

With regard to the proposed location of adding pickle ball courts to the Public Tennis Center, has the option of converting the hard tennis courts that are currently at Bayfront Park into pickle ball courts, and relocate the existing two tennis hard courts to the former Amore restaurant location been considered? If not, I ask you to do so. Logically, it would contain all pickle ball courts in one locale and place all tennis courts at the town’s Tennis Center; the hard courts could still be made available to anyone without a fee if free access is a concern. It would also eliminate the noise issue raised by many tennis players and residents/neighbors. I happen to play both tennis and pickle ball, and firmly believe separating the two is not only a better solution for all players and residents, but also provides a better long term approach to a sport that is growing rapidly. Thank you in advance for your consideration.

Fanny Cohen Younger

Longboat Key

 

The ACE Center convo…

To: Town Manager Tom Harmer

Following up our recent discussions, I offer a few thoughts in advance of anticipated discussions at the June 3 Commission

Meeting. First, I will not dwell on my position that the Town’s  best opportunity for the ACE building and activities has been ,and continues to be, a joint venture with Ringling ; while recognizing at least  two basic points: 1. Obviously, Ringling’s understandable decision not to go forward, “at this time,” and 2. That it appears to me that a majority of the Commission (4, 5 or 6?), has been, and still may be, supportive of going forward with Ringling at some point in the future. However, while we certainly need to let the dust settle with Ringling for a while; at the June meeting I think we should renew our efforts to articulate an endorsement of a long-term ACE facility which we have been striving for over a number of years as the cornerstone of a Town Center for Longboat Key. Accordingly, to achieve that objective I recommend, beginning at the June meeting, that we strive to attain a unanimous consent on each of at least the following issues: (A) Reconfirm that the old Art Center building (and activities), should be replaced in the Town Center (former Amore site) location as recently endorsed by the Commission with Ringling before their decision; (B) That  the Town should own the building; (C) That the capital funding for the building must  be from private involved  sources obtained by experienced fund raisers ; (D) That a private entity should maintain and operate the facility ; (E) That  a private entity and the Town should jointly agree on the artistic and cultural  activities to be provided; and (F) That the Adult Educational Center should be an integral activity in the building. Then, assuming that we can reach such a consensus on each of these and any other related issues, after a reasonable period of time to do so while also reflecting on Ringling’s decision, we would  be in a position to evaluate and consider  all potential private entities to enable the Town to jointly work with to  meet these criteria and renew our efforts to develop our ACE building. I remind that commissioners should not respond all to this email.

Jack Daly

Commissioner

Longboat Key

 

Town light poles

To: Sadler James

Sadler, you’ve been doing your homework my man. This first grouping is the Verizon 4G LTE installation better viewed at some distance as that one shot you have. Naturally the lollypop at top is the antenna radome with internal PC slotted arrays not unlike their 4G antennas displaced at 120°.

Note they’re not very high because their line-of-sight designed for downtown configurations. From not that far away their pretty benign looking in black blending in quite well with the surroundings. I’ve added Isaac and James’ addresses for your records

Ed Krepela

Longboat Key

 

Town light poles

To: Ed Krepela

Please find a series of two e-mails with pictures attached. It is a working example of the equipment shown at the workshop and painted black. I will leave it to Public Works, Mr. Kogle and the vendors to identify the components. The top antenna may or may not be representative of the units on GMD, but will be used somewhere in the system. 8 pictures, 4 each e-mail. I do not have the Director of Public Works e-mail readily available and sent these e-mails anyhow.

Sadler L. James

Longboat Key

 

Arts Center

To: Longboat Key Education Center Director Susan Goldfarb

As I mentioned, the Town Commission meets today at 1 p.m. for its regular monthly workshop. While the Arts center has not been put on the agenda for this meeting, there will be an opportunity at the opening for members of the public to speak for 3 minutes each. If you were interested to clear the record on your views on the Ringling arrangement, you could do so then. Otherwise, I will keep you apprised of the next time the matter is formally scheduled for discussion. Thanks.

Ken Schneier

Commissioner

Longboat Key

 

Arts Center

To: Commissioner Ken Schneier

Thanks for the reminder. I found out from George Spoll that the Arts, Culture and Education center was not on the agenda so I have decided to skip this meeting. But please keep me apprised of the when it will be scheduled for discussion as I would definitely attend. Best, Susan

Susan Goldfarb

Executive Director

The Longboat Key Education Center

 

Arts Center

To: Longboat Key Education Center Susan Goldfarb

Will do.

Ken Schneier

Commissioner

Longboat Key

 

Arts Center

To: Longboat Key Education Center Susan Goldfarb

Town staff spoke with Larry Thompson several times recently to see if he would agree to appear before the Town Commission again to discuss the Arts Center. Unsurprisingly, Larry demurred to avoid further negative publicity from those opposed to Ringling, combined with the small likelihood of a positive result at this time. The current plan is to focus on the preparation of a temporary outdoor venue on the Arts Center site, with the hope by many of us that discussions with Ringling can re-commence in the not-too-distant future under more positive circumstances. Good luck with your new program year; I hope we can meet at some point.

Ken Schneier

Commissioner

Longboat Key

 

Arts Center

To: Commissioner Ken Schneier

Thank you for the update. I put in two calls and sent two emails to Larry asking if he would like me to say something publicly at Town Hall about a possible arrangement between Ringling and the LBK Education Center, but he never responded. I was impressed however that he called me the morning he sent out the press release about backing off the LBK Arts, Culture and Education center project and also emailed me the statement he sent to all the local publications. I am not sure why he never called back even if it was to say not to bother addressing the issue any further. I think the outdoor venue could be great. I recently went to an outdoor Amphitheatre at Bradenton’s Riverwalk and I thought it was very exciting to be enjoying a concert under the stars. The seating was perfect and the stage was equipped with everything you would need for bands, movies, plays. Have you ever been to Bradenton’s Riverwalk? I think an outdoor venue could be permanent in the future and there is still the adjacent property for a facility of some kind. Maybe when the SMOA finally opens in Sarasota Larry will be less stressed and come back to the LBK project feeling more positive. I am busy putting next season together and have invited Ringling to bring a speaker series to help them brand their Olli/Ringling partnership. So we are working together. Thanks so much for keeping me informed. If there is a meeting you think I should attend at some future date just let me know. I would like to meet you also. Enjoy Memorial Day.

Susan Goldfarb

Executive Director

The Longboat Key Education Center

 

Light pollution

To: Town Commission

You received an email from Mr. Melamed regarding concerns about lighting on a neighboring property. The lighting is not currently an issue as they are shut down for turtle season but staff has offered to follow up with Mr. Melamed regarding the lights post turtle season. Below is a response from the staff on his concerns.

Thomas A. Harmer

Town Manager

Town of Longboat Key

 

Light Pollution

To: Mr. Melamed

Thank you again for speaking with me. I apologize that your nighttime views have been impacted by the neighboring property and that your attempts to resolve this as a private matter have not been productive up ‘til now. I apologize too that you were waiting for additional contact from the Town. I was informed of your contact with our Code Enforcement Officer on May 15th and mistakenly thought that conversation had addressed your concerns.

As we discussed, fortunately the lighting has been turned off for marine turtle nesting season, which runs from May 1 – October 31. And when you return next season, if these lights are still an issue, we’ll have our staff out to investigate whether the lighting is potentially a Code Enforcement issue (the applicable Code Section that addresses such lighting is in Chapter 130 – General Offenses; Section 130.03 – Annoying Spotlights or Floodlights, which states that “outdoor lighting consisting of spotlights and floodlights shall be installed, regulated, and maintained by the owner and person in control thereof, so as to reflect the light away from any adjoining residential premises and avoid disturbance, annoyance, or interference to persons upon these adjoining premises.”) or if it’s a private property matter that we can seek to assist with resolving to everyone’s satisfaction. My contact information is below. I look forward to hearing from you when you’re back.

Allen Parsons

Director Planning, Zoning & Building Department

Town of Longboat Key

 

Park in the Rosemary District

To: Mayor Liz Alpert

I am a resident of the Rosemary District. I have just been informed that the park we were told we would have in our district, now has a low priority.

I am very unhappy to hear this, and hope that you will support this project wholeheartedly. I cannot attend the meeting on Friday, but if I could, I would be there.

Thank you in advance for your attention to this matter.

Bonnie Plotkin

Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Priscilla Liscombe

This is to confirm that the start time for the parking meters at the end of Ringling Boulevard is 9 a.m. Thank you for your interest.

Steven R. Cover

Planning Director

City of Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Deputy Town Manager Marlon Brown, Town Manager Tom Harmer

Please see the email below and update me on this when you can although I thought Mr. Lyons said something about the Parking Committee recommending a specific start time but I am not sure if it was 9 a.m. or 10 a.m.

Jen Ahearn-Koch

Vice Mayor

City of Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn-Koch

I have not heard anything on this. Could you please update me. Thank you very much.

Priscilla Liscombe

Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Priscilla Liscombe

Thanks for getting in touch with me about this and I have copied the Deputy City Manager Marlon Brown along with Mark Lyons on this email and they will be able to respond appropriately (and copy me please).

Jen Ahearn-Koch

Vice Mayor

City of Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn-Koch

Has there been a consensus on this? Thank you. I appreciate your prompt communications and follow through. Have a great day.

Priscilla Liscombe

Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Priscilla Liscombe, Parking Manager Mark Lyons

Thank you Mr. Lyons for responding. Per the start time of the meters, and I may be wrong, but it was my understanding that they would not start until 10 a.m. I thought that was the decision and what you said when we were talking with Christophe from C’est La Vie.

Jen Ahearn-Koch

Vice Mayor

City of Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Priscilla Liscombe

Thank you for your email on this matter. You are right, we are a bit delayed in updating this signage, but it is planned for replacement with appropriate wording as previously discussed. As for the time of paid parking, in the near future, we will take this in to consideration when this topic is reviewed.

Mark Lyons

Parking Manager

City of Sarasota

 

Street parking dead end of Ringing Blvd.

To: Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn-Koch and Mark Lyons

As we had a little to do about this sign, I am surprised that it is still up and functioning. I assume it will be replaced in the near future to correctly state the true nature of the parking.

I am also of the opinion that the parking fee should start at 10:00 a.m. as there is no one shopping at St. Armands before that time. It would also give the beach walkers a break as parking especially at this time of year can get pretty full, and those who walk in the a.m. are off the beach by then.

Priscilla J. Liscombe

Sarasota

 

North Lido Key Beach Parking

To: Priscilla Liscombe

“We will observe the spaces and determine if there needs to be an adjustment (regarding hours-my insert). Just for clarification, these spaces are technically considered on the street (the signs in the grass are incorrectly stated). Thank you for your patience.”

“Ms. Liscombe,

Admittedly, that sign does not accurately reflect the physical nature of the area, but it is indeed the dead end of John Ringling Blvd. The home directly across from the parking area is addressed in the 100 block of John Ringling Blvd., and the street designation defines it.”

Mark Lyons

Parking Manager

City of Sarasota

 

North Lido Key Beach Parking

To: Parking Manager Mark Lyons

As activation seems imminent, I am wondering if the determination has been made to start metering at the beach lot at 10 a.m. instead of 9 a.m.

As there is great turnover before this hour it would accommodate the beach walkers before the shopping crowd comes in. I am sure your observers have noted this occurrence.

Priscilla Liscombe

Sarasota

 

North Lido Key Beach Parking

To: Priscilla Liscombe

We will look at this and evaluate it once we get closer to activation. Thanks.

Mark Lyons

Parking Manager

City of Sarasota

 

North Lido Key Beach Parking

To: Parking Manager Mark Lyons

Thank you for your prompt and attentive reply. I understand your side of the matter and appreciate the city’s regard for the turnover in the lot during the day. Understandable we morning beach walkers hate to see the end of an era but I will adapt to the changes.

Any chance you could make that lot 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.? Just asking. Thank you!

Priscilla Liscombe

Sarasota

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Pinky Pakalapati

I have spoken to the City Manager and Deputy City Manager about increased police enforcement and they have assured me that this will or is happening, both on enforcing the ”no left turn” and speeding on that section of North Trail and the crosswalk issue at 15th Street.

I did see the posted sign, thanks. What about orange flags on the sign, I have seen that used before to get people’s attention to a posted sign?

Jen Ahearn-Koch

Vice Mayor

City of Sarasota

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn-Koch

We added a sign that is post mounted and more visible. We also asked the contractor to enhance the cross walk so it stands out. We thought about other options like removal of striping past the stop bar, but it looks like that will cause other issues/confusion with traffic. We will have the cross walk enhancement as soon as we can, the contractor is working with his sub-contractor to schedule the work. In the meantime, enforcement would help a lot. I noticed today when I was crossing, that people will stop when they saw me at the crosswalk, but still went across the cross walk as soon as I passed them. Enforcement and handing out warnings will definitely help the situation a lot. If you have a contact info to call, I’ll be more than happy to call and explain the situation. Thanks.

Pinky Pakalapati

Project Engineer

CDM Smith

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Project Engineer Pinky Pakalapati

Thanks for this. What about the crosswalk safety issues? Do you have any new ideas for a solution?

Jen Ahearn-Koch

Vice Mayor

City of Sarasota

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Steve Roskamp

The contractor made some adjustments to the detection. They are scheduled to change the green times for 14th street first thing in the morning. This should take care of the very short green times for east and west traffic. Regarding the pedestrian crossing, I walked there myself to see what the issues is. When you press the pedestrian button, the red hand signal changes to walk signal for ~ 10secs and an additional 20 sections with flashing red hand, so pedestrians should get about 30 seconds to cross US 41. It seems like the resident might not have activated the pedestrian signal when crossing? I’ve checked it at least 3 times in a row and it worked every time. We will keep an eye on it as well, but please let the residents know that the ped signal has to be activated via the button for the signal to provide the extra time for crossings. Thanks.

Pinky Pakalapati

Project Engineer

CDM Smith

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Steve Roskamp

I’ve asked the team to adjust the timings for a longer green on the East-West leg of 14th St. Please note the Pedestrian button will hold the green longer when used. It appears the individual below did not use the Ped signal.

James Nichols

Construction Manager FDOT

Manatee Operations

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Project Engineer Pinky Pakalapati

I was out-of-town this past week and had just sent some notes to my staff to see if the timing of the traffic light had been addressed when I received the blow notes from Sarasota Bay Club staff and residents. I’m not sure what you have indicated that the matter is one for the City as the issue was created when the east-west traffic was moved north a couple weeks ago. I ask in the strongest way that you address this today and get rid of any traffic sensor mechanism that is obviously not working and return to the prior light changing settings.

Steve Roskamp

Sarasota

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Steve Roskamp

I seldom cross 41 on my bike rides. This morning, for the first time, I decided to cross at the new crosswalk. As I was approaching the crosswalk the light turned green.  I was close to the crossing point so I proceeded.  Just before I got half way the light changed and waiting cars did jackrabbit starts. Those coming from the South in the inner lane waited until I could turn my bike sideways in the middle of the street.  Next thing I knew cars were zooming by from both directions at high speed, with about a 2  ft. clearance on either side of me.  It was absolutely terrifying.  Fortunately there was a break in North bound traffic and I was able to walk/run my bike across the North Bound lane.  My life was definitely in danger, and that is in no way an exaggeration.  On the way home I timed the light.  By the second hand on my watch, people had 12 seconds to cross before traffic started from both directions: if there was a yellow signal at all it was on for less than 2 seconds.   This is an intolerable situation and I hope you can arrange for the city to modify the timing of the lights.  As it stands now, timing seems to be unpredictable.

Steve Roskamp

Sarasota

 

14th Street East-West Traffic Light

To: Project Engineer Pinky Pakalapati

I had a meeting with the Sarasota Bay Club Resident Council yesterday and had a cascade of complaints about the timing of the 14th street east-west traffic light.

As I suggested to you I would do, yesterday I had my Assistant, Teresa, observe the length of the east-west green signal.  Previously the green signal was timed on average to be 24 seconds for the east-west crossing.    The current average is now 15.26 seconds and without the pedestrian crossing (which allows for almost 30 seconds to cross) the average is only 13.77 seconds.

It seems the timing for east-west traffic crossing should be at least the previous 24 seconds, especially during peak times, to allow adequate traffic to make it through the signal.  As such, I will appreciate your review and response.

Steve Roskamp

Sarasota

 

School Avenue Area Crash Data

To: Mary Anne Bowie

A huge issue with the School Avenue permanent vacation is the design of the alleged “bicycle/pedestrian” pathway.

In mid-2018, the School Board held two community meetings where they promised a route, between the Museum (SMA) and the High School, with a southern terminus by the Sailor Circus on Bahia Vista………  if and only if the School Board received a permanent vacation of School Avenue.    Never mind that the School Board had removed a bicycle/pedestrian pathway on School Avenue and should have compensated the City on that basis alone…………they maintained that they would only offer compensation if the City gave them a permanent vacation too.

But even that was a false promise. By late 2018, Mary Anne Bowie, Pearlee Freiberg, and I heard, from School Board planner Ebaugh, at a DRC meeting, that the School Board was reneging on its promise of allowing earlier promised hours.    That was when citizens and CCNA began demanding that the School Board deed the property over to the City, so the City could manage it, and citizens would not have to worry about the School Board reneging on other promises.

But, then there was another nasty surprise. For the Planning Board hearing, the preparatory materials revealed that, without notice to the neighborhoods, the School Board and City staff had re-routed the whole route to run along US 41.     This was extremely disappointing because, besides the chicanery, that route has always existed anyway. And the neighbors had always asked for a route on School Avenue or the route east of SMA

And, the news is even worse. This heralded, grand, “bicycle/pedestrian route” along US 41, according to preliminary comments, is nothing more than an 8’ sidewalk. Whoop-te-doo!

So, the School Board has shown contempt for the community in at least four ways during this process.

In a better city, with the SMA under construction, with city staff that actually cared about walkability, and with funding from the School Board,  and even assuming no route on School Avenue or east of SMA, there would be a great streetside along US 41, built to national standards on walkability. These standards can be found in “Designing Walkable Urban Thoroughfares:  A Context-Sensitive Approach (DWUT), 2010, by the Institute of Transportation Engineers and the Congress for the New Urbanism. DWUT is the only real walkability manual applicable to all American cities, produced by credible national organizations.  By “manual”, I don’t mean a guide or set of suggestions. Instead, a manual provides all the necessary specifications for every reasonable situation.   DWUT does so on pp 70-71.      

Following their standards, the streetside in front of SMA would be at least 19’. It would include a 7-8’ strip with trees along US 41, interspersed with other street furniture such as benches, trash cans, light poles, etc.  In many areas, parts of this strip would be paved. It would have trees and street furniture; it would not be a dismal grass strip. It might even be a little wider to accommodate FDOT’s 4’ rule for vertical obstructions and still provide trees.   Then, there would be a clear area of paved pedestrian throughway of at least 8’.   And, then 4’ of clear space between the pedestrian walkway and any fencing/landscaping or other frontage from SMA. But, because this is Florida and this is an area under construction, and because DWUT assumes buildings on the inside of the streetside anyway which provide shade,  I recommend that the space between the streetside and SMA should also include trees so that the streetside is shaded on both sides.

Please note that the standards I am recommending are not Mike Lasche’s ideas. They are the recommendations of nationally prominent engineers, planners, and walkability experts who state that they are necessary for real walkability. For those who like Andres Duany, he is a contributor to DWUT. For those who like Jeff Speck, his streetside recommendations are strikingly similar to DWUT and arguably the same, although Speck did not attempt to provide such a detailed manual.

Sarasota could have a streetside of great beauty and real walkability in front of SMA.    We have an area under construction, we have a School Board offering money, and we have a real civic need. All we need is our City Commission to show the leadership to work with SMA and the School Board to make it happen.

Mike Lasche

Bicycle/Pedestrian Advocates

Sarasota

 

Community meeting wanted

To: Mary Anne Bowie

Good morning. Pursuant to your request yesterday at the CTST, please see the attached crash data for the area around Sarasota High School.  The first attachment shows the last 5 years of crashes at specific intersections, the portion to be vacated, and the mitigation route on U.S. 41.

The second attachment shows the crash data at the Bahia Vista Parking Lot.  There do not appear to have been any crashes related to drivers turning left out of the SHS parking lot in the past 5 years.  Regarding the intersection of East Ave. and Bahia Vista St., relative to other locations this amount of crashes, with 11 total, does not particularly stand out.  For example, the intersection of Bahia Vista St. and School Ave. had 16 while the intersection with Shade Ave. had 32 in the same period.  So, this probably does not merit the level of investment of a roundabout.  Nonetheless, due to the fact that we have pedestrian crossings at the intersection and due to the recorded pedestrian injury, it’s worth looking into pedestrian refuge islands on the western and southern legs of the intersection.   These would require County approval, and we would likely seek County or School Board funding for these.

Lastly, City staff has made the determination that we are not under direction from the City Commission to conduct additional meetings with the public, as the Commission passed the vacation ordinance on first reading and did not provide direction to staff to conduct additional meetings.  Nonetheless, in City Staff’s discussions with the School Board on the pending Interlocal Agreement, I will raise the following items with School Board staff for discussion per your presentation at the CTST:

A comfortable separation distance from US 41 to the pedestrian walkway.

Whether all possibility has been exhausted for a “back of house route” and whether such could be arranged on a trial basis.

A provision to guarantee Shade Ave. will not be vacated.

Advising that the School Board should complete a Master Plan that incorporates all of their properties to find means of complementing the surrounding neighborhoods.

Daniel Ohrenstein

Assistant City Engineer

City of Sarasota Public Works Department

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