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Sunday, October 20, 2013

Is it about bringing people to the waterfront?

Today's Miami Herald has a front page story on the Grove Waterfront Plan, the Grove Bay project.

I read it more than once because the first time I felt the Herald was biased toward the plan, but the second time I read it, I felt Andres Viglucci and Charles Rabin, the reporters, were fair. We're mentioned in the article, here's the paragraph: "The opponents have also lashed out furiously at City Commissioner Marc Sarnoff, a Grove resident, who has actively championed the project, directing insults at him and Grove Bay supporters in public meetings, in e-mail blasts, and in comments posted on the Coconut Grove Grapevine blog. The blog, written by Tom Falco, who opposes the plan, has become the site of warring, sometimes blistering comments both pro and con from Grove residents."

Ouch. Maybe we can all be less blistering in our comments. You know what they say, people who speak low and calmly get more respect and attention than those that scream and yell.

One thing that I did not like in the article was from one of the Grove Bay principals, Jay Leyva who said, “Our goal from the beginning was to bring people to the waterfront. Our offices are right here, and I look out every day and see there is no one out there. We want to open it all up to the public."

This is the last sentence in the article.

But I ask Jay, Why? Why take a sleepy little waterfront and bring the masses, other than money I mean? Why not have a peaceful, quiet place that people are enjoying now. And there are plenty of people there now already. If you cared about people and the waterfront, you would ask for a park or something, not a bunch of restaurants and who knows what else. The Herald article mentions a convenience store on the first floor of the garage. A 7-11 or what? What does that mean?

It's like saying Matheson Hammock is just too quiet, let's bring in retail to bring more people, or, "Hey, that golf course is too quiet, let's stick a restaurant right in the center to bring more people." I'm trying to think,  aren't other cities' waterfronts like New York, Boston, Baltimore and others open?

A friend and I used to lament 20 years ago, how in Miami, every piece of green has something built on it. We can't have nature here. Pittsburgh, PA has more green than Miami.


It makes no sense to hand over the public land to a company for up to 80 years, and give them the submerged land as part of the deal and allow them to flip it at will. For example, what if Genting, the casino company, comes in and offers them $1 billion? Will they flip it? Then what? If you think our city commissioners will not vote in favor of whatever a future developer (or casino owner) with deep pockets wants, I have a baseball stadium to sell you, oh wait, you already own it.

Vote No on November 5. Enough with giving away public land for private enterprise. 

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12 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Miami Herald article writers were spot on. I know it won't make a difference to the readers of this blog, but the "Stop Grove Bay" organizers should take note of their actions and how the rest of Miami and a silent majority of Coconut Grove residents view them and their tactics. I'm confident they will see the majority of the 33133 district come out in favor of this project. I'm voting YES!

October 20, 2013 11:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am opposed to giving away public land to private enterprise, in perpetuity essentially.

This plan should have been developed with community input.

I will vote NO.

I am a part of the silent minority.

Maybe all who are silent are not the "silent majority"

October 20, 2013 3:33 PM  
Blogger tom davis said...

Anonymous, do you not HAVE the BALLS to give a legit name ???? You must be one of the many paid dildo's that support this site to be built ny CARPET BAGGERS " hit & run builders!!!" Crove Native, tom davis, jr. TIDE Ferrari racing, palm beach. P.S, I WAS PRES. Friends of the COCOANUT GROVE PLAYHOUSE in 1977 & 78 the ONLY TIME in the 80+ year history that it made a profit. The "FRIENDS" made the Playhouse Historic so Mutany owner Burton Goldberg could not rip it down and build another TACKY South Florida condo. Help Save the MIAMI Marine Stadium as well! palm beach tide yacht club.

October 20, 2013 3:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The STOP Grove Bay supporters are anything but silent. The Tea Party could take notes on how to interrupt a meeting based on their actions last week.

October 20, 2013 5:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But I ask Jay, Why? Why take a sleepy little waterfront and bring the masses..."

I really don't understand this blog. One day everyone is up in arms about bringing business and people to the Grove and competing with South Miami and Miami Beach, the next day, there's a post lamenting the "new" Grove and feeling nostalgia for the past. Which past? 1990? 1980? 1970?

You state "we can't have nature here." I don't know what that means. Mangrove trees? Coconut palms? Coomptie plantations? Sea plane hangers? Rotting oaks? Run down auditorium? This is probably why the faction that says no to every new proposal for the Grove can't find any new blood. They have no vision of the future.

October 20, 2013 5:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is revenue from Coconut Grove water front now being spent by the city in Coconut Grove or is it being used to bankroll other parts of the city? We do have a neglected and impoverished section right here that can use the money and investment for revitalization projects.

October 20, 2013 11:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pittsburgh actually has a lot more green than most cities, and many times over what Miami has. Maybe you should visit it before attempting to hold it out as some extreme example.

October 21, 2013 1:20 PM  
Blogger Grant Sheehan said...

The last e-mail sent out by Commissioner Sarnoff should be considered a slap in the face of every Grove resident. Throughout the e-mail he reminds everyone that this is a city wide vote and that “ALL” the voters of Miami will determine the future of the Grove.
It is time that the Grove should consider taking control of these types of matters and incorporating Coconut Grove so we can control our own destiny. It is not an impossible task. We can follow Key Biscayne and the Village of Pinecrest model.

October 21, 2013 2:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right now there essentially is no waterfront in Coconut Grove. It's amazing that we live in one of the nicest spots in Miami/South Florida/USA and can't walk along the bay or find a place to sit and relax and enjoy. It seems to me that this plan will be a step in the right direction. What shocks me is it took this long to get here.

October 21, 2013 5:30 PM  
Blogger Grant Sheehan said...

There was a try to incorporate several years ago and the city commission conceded to give us a Village Counsel who would speak for the Grove. A lot of good that did us!

October 21, 2013 6:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Apparently you don't live around here or have never tried to actually access the area you are talking about. One can walk along the Bay from Peacock Park all the way to Monty's with dozens of spots to picnic and or just sit at public benches.
My personal favorite area is right by piers 1 and 2 and sitting in the empty Charthousse back porch at sunrise.

October 22, 2013 8:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Join Free Coconut Grove on Facebook.

October 22, 2013 9:49 PM  

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