We have to stay the course

COMMENTARY

Editor’s note: Richard Winger is a member of the Vero Beach City Council. 

RICHARD WINGER

Richard Winger

Thank you for your support on the last two issues I reached out to you about.  With your help, Vero Beach City Council voted 4-0 to take the “old golf course: Dodgertown property” off the market.  While we did not succeed with the Storm Water Utility yet, that issue still needs to be addressed to save the Lagoon.

Now, I need your help again, by coming to the City Council meeting about the long term, or what is called THE VISION PLAN, 2:00PM this coming Monday, March 13th at City Hall.  Or if you are committed Monday, you can e-mail your feelings about keeping Vero Vero to the City Clerk at tbursick@covb.org.

My thought is we have to stay the course, or lose Vero.  Once a bad development, traffic pattern, or building exists, we cannot change it.  Once the Lagoon is dead, we cannot bring it back to life.  Once we become Fort Lauderdale, we “can never go home again.”

We can correct Council’s short term damage, like potentially cutting the Life Guards or recreation.   However, it is a good thing if enough pressure comes forth to do Overlays (firm plans) for Main Street or Miracle Mile.  It is a bad thing if the City Council shoots from the hip and pushes something because the developers want it.  We are at a jump off point.  Up to now, most City Council members have carried the Vision Plan in their hearts.  That is gone, but if we can tighten the fabric of the Vision, good can come of it.

In 2003, with the City of Vero Beach addressing significant issues regarding growth, development, and overall city character, the City Council decided to pursue a “visioning process.” Different from a comprehensive plan, which is mandated by State statute and has substantial technical requirements, a “vision plan” broadly engages the public and seeks a community consensus for the future direction of the City. From the visioning effort, future comprehensive plan amendments, ordinance changes, and administrative adjustments may be pursued.

Take a look at the City’s Vision Plan http://www.covb.org/index.asp?SEC=C3F14724-270E-4ED0-B5FF-8F65D239BD02&Type=B_LIST and encourage your City Council and the City Staff to follow it when making decisions about the issues that affect our long term quality of life.  We can win or lose Vero Beach here in the near future.

2 comments

  1. Speaking of bad planning, has anyone checked out the monstrosities being built on The Point?
    The people of Vero Beach have virtually been blocked the privilege of being able to enjoy the river along this location.
    Are we losing our vision of trying to keep Vero a special place by controlling over-building like south Florida? There seems to be those who want to develop every open space.

  2. The “Clubhouse” at the six holes left at Dodgertown could be used as a kids exercise complex, and a supervised registration desk for use of the golf course by kids and senior golf teachers (volunteers). Equipment could be donated by private clubs in the area when they replace their equipment. This would be an incentive for private clubs to get involved with the junior program at Dodgertown. Private clubs in this area could help provide the dollars needed to cover much of the expense for such an overall program, which might include a sailing instruction program like that at the Moorings, “Fairwinds”.

    Bill Dow, 600 Riomar Drive, Apt 18, 32963

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