Sarasota County Faculty Board backs Benderson in Siesta Key resort combat

Sarasota County Faculty Board backs Benderson in Siesta Key resort combat

A controversial developer’s proposal to rewrite main development administration insurance policies for Sarasota County’s barrier islands and pave the way in which for unprecedented intense resort improvement in Siesta Key will proceed after Sarasota County commissioners gave Benderson Improvement Corp. the inexperienced mild to pursue adjustments Tuesday morning.

Commissioners opted for Benderson’s extra aggressive development plan adjustments however declined to permit public consideration of two others that might enable extra modest resort improvement. All three proposals — technically known as privately initiated development plan amendments — come after the builders and the county misplaced a two-year authorized battle costing lots of of 1000’s of {dollars} that resulted from one other effort to permit giant accommodations on Siesta Key.

On this case, the county sought to accommodate builders’ proposals to create bigger accommodations within the world-famous Siesta Key space, just by altering the event code to take away a long-standing density cap on the variety of permitted resort rooms. The trouble was thwarted by a Siesta Key resident who challenged the transfer in courtroom and received.

In a single key ruling, a choose concluded that the legislation change conflicts with the county’s decades-old development administration coverage that limits improvement on flood-prone barrier islands.

This development coverage froze any improve in density of improvement on Siesta Key for many years, ensuing within the low-key, laid-back seashore city environment that exists at present with the island’s largest resort numbering simply over 50 rooms.

However builders have proposed 4 tasks in Siesta Key in 2021, calling for greater than 400 resort rooms on the island. Together with an eight-story, 170-room resort in Siesta Key Village on lower than an acre, a 112-room resort on Midnight Cross Highway and a 120-unit venture close to the island’s South Bridge.

Benderson Improvement is in search of to construct a Siesta Key resort

Benderson Improvement, one of many largest builders lively within the space, has not been concerned in earlier Siesta Key resort tasks, however the influential native firm owns a number of properties on the island, together with rather less than an acre in Siesta Key Village, the place it seeks to construct A 147-room resort in line with the most recent improvement functions.

Their newest proposal is analogous in strategy to what earlier resort builders have sought, however entails both eradicating or rewriting development insurance policies which have hindered earlier resort tasks.

Two different proposed amendments to the expansion plan, together with one from the Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce, would restrict the variety of resort rooms in Siesta Key to 52 models per acre — twice what present county improvement legal guidelines enable for the favored vacationer vacation spot.

None of those proposals have been submitted for public evaluation by the County Fee.

As an alternative, the Fee favored the extra controversial proposal, submitted by Kimlee Horne on behalf of the LLCs managed by Benderson Improvement Company. This proposal wouldn’t restrict the variety of rooms primarily based on lot measurement however would enable for as many rooms as a developer may match inside the constructing allowed beneath improvement codes.

Opponents known as it “limitless density.”

Greater than a dozen critics attended the assembly — most of them Siesta Key residents — and all audio system throughout public remark had been against Benderson’s proposal.

One speaker Tuesday referred to the near-unified opposition to large accommodations in Siesta Key as “the numerous towards the cash.”

Opposition included Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce President Michael Gatz. The chamber’s proposal would have restricted resort tasks to a most of 75 rooms with a most density of 52 models per acre.

Dave Pallot, the developer behind one of many resort proposals, filed a development plan modification that’s nearly an identical to Benderson’s, however set the utmost resort density at 52 models per acre.

Sarasota County Commissioners help plans for a Siesta Key resort

County Commissioner Mark Smith, a Siesta Key resident, mentioned he couldn’t help Benderson’s proposal and advisable the fee transfer ahead with the Siesta Key Chamber’s proposal and Pallot’s proposal.

“I do not help limitless density in Siesta Key,” he mentioned.

Nevertheless, County Commissioner Mike Moran mentioned he felt Benderson’s proposal supplied “probably the most freedom” to maneuver the tasks ahead.

Commissioner Neil Rainsford mentioned he helps “limiting the variety of non permanent lodging” and that Benderson’s proposal does that by limiting the full quantity of resort improvement in Siesta Key to not more than 15% of the full accessible industrial land.

It’s not clear whether or not this ruling can be legally enforceable as a result of it might create a first-come, first-served state of affairs for current industrial property homeowners on Siesta Key, which might battle with the state’s personal property rights safety legal guidelines.

Smith then steered transferring ahead with the three proposed development plan amendments so the general public may look at all the proposals introduced.

“I feel we’re narrowing our public enter by making only one suggestion,” he mentioned.

However the council voted 3-1, backing Moran, Rainsford and Ron Cotzinger, to advance solely Benderson’s proposal. Commissioner Joe Neunder was absent.

The choice begins a course of that can take months and require group workshops and public hearings earlier than the county Planning Fee. Modifications to the expansion plan will finally return to the County Fee for a closing vote.

The resort improvement difficulty has sparked a citizen backlash not like something seen in years in Sarasota County. Siesta Key residents launched a constituent motion to take management of native improvement selections, however their efforts have been defeated over the previous two years by state lawmakers.

Earlier protection The resort proposals search to reverse Siesta Key’s authorized victories after a two-year courtroom battle

extra: Sarasota County ends authorized battle over Siesta Key accommodations as opponents put together for the subsequent spherical

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