Waterfront RFP Committee met yesterday
Yesterday afternoon, the RFP Selection Committee got together to hear the oral presentations from the bidders for the Chart House / Grove Key Marina and Scotty's Landing RFPs. They did not post the bidders' documents and those present were told that they would be made public only after the City Manager has signed off on the selection.
It appears that there is no one on the committee who is associated with Coconut Grove or the Grove's Waterfront Master Plan.
After introductory remarks, it was announced that the oral presentation was exempt from the public hearing requirements and that everyone except the selection committee, the presenters and the city employees were shown out of the meeting.
GROVE VILLAGE COUNCIL PREPARES RESOLUTION
Regarding the Coconut Grove Waterfront Master Plan in relation to the RFPs, the Cocoanut Grove Village Council prepared a resolution at a meeting on June 7, 2012. The Master Plan covers all the leasholds used by commercial enterprises along the Grove waterfront as well as parkland.
The Village Council Resolution asks a question of a City worker: "The RFP makes reference to the Coconut Grove Comprehensive Master Plan for Dinner Key. In that Master Plan, they have a specific pier configuration, etc. What role does that play in these individual responses, especially since you've separated the two parts -- The Chart House is a separate RFP from the casual dining?"
The answer on tape, by a City worker, which is scratchy, I don't have his name, states that the Master Plan is not "etched in stone," and in the same sentence states that the Master Plan is City Policy (but not law). Yet, a developer is permitted to "steer away from the specific requirments." Many times, spokespersons say anything, especially to the Village Council, so that doesn't mean his actual comments are exactly as the city feels. It makes no sense to have a Master Plan and then say it is not etched in stone. What's the point of a Master Plan then?
The Village Council's resolution is concerned about the fact that the RFP's for The Chart House now has no provision for an easement for the driveway to the fishing pier nor does it require the relocation of The Chart House property.
The Waterfront Master plan says (from 2004): "The City envisions a Coastal Recreation Park that emphasizes human scale, public open spaces, and connectivity for the pedstrian realm through the creation of waterfront promenades, diverse open spaces, an active park with sensitive environmental spoil island connections (real or visual) that will enhance the water component and recreational environmental elements."
The plan goes on to state that site lines of the waterfront are an important part of the plan. "The Coconut Grove Waterfront Master Plan includes the relocation of the Chart House building and construction of a pier with a driveway running along the edge of the property occupied by Grove Harbour Marina, which change would both create a sight line to the water and provide a "tourist destination" which would house commercial shrimping and fishing charter boats, a component which is necessary to the plan."
The Miami Herald has excellent coverage of yesterday's meeting details here.
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