Welcome to the Grapevine

The only place for Coconut Grove, FL News, Views & Opinions - Sunlight is the best disinfectant

Saturday, April 18, 2015

I'm not crazy about the quality of life around here

Maybe I'm just cranky today, but I'm finding that the Grove is more and more undesirable for residents. You can't go from one end of Coconut Grove to another without being detoured or delayed in some form. Even on weekend mornings, there is often some sort of race for charity going on which blocks the streets even more. Try to navigate SW 27th Avenue at any time. Good luck. Each day is a game as you play which streets are open and which are closed. You can place bets on which streets are detours any given day. I literally had to go from Aviation and Mary, east to South Bayshore Drive, make a U-turn and go back west again to get to US1 the other day. It was the only way to navigate the mess.

It has literally taken me half an hour to get from North Grove to Center Grove during certain times of the day. Don't even try when Ransom Everglades lets out. I joked with the cop directing traffic there one day, I told him, "I took the bus to school," he said, "I walked!" We both don't get the coddling of the kids that need to be driven and picked up to and from school daily, we don' get this concept. A handful of buses can easily navigate the street that hundreds of cars and parents do every day. What about bicycles? Are these kids too lazy to ride a few blocks to school by bike?

I was late for an important event one morning because traffic was stopped in front of every school between my house and the venue at 7:30 am. At one location, the hold up was 15 minutes in front of one school. Traffic was at a total standstill for 15 minutes.

The condo construction has roads closed too often, many times on weekends, when they think traffic is lighter. It's not. Even sidewalks are torn up in the Center Grove.

Does the Grove need all this gentrification? Whom does it serve other than the few who make money on the jobs and construction?

And these 5K races and events; maybe it's time to give up on hosting them, I don't see these people staying in the Grove afterwards and spending money. They take up all the parking, run around the parks to City Hall and then get in their cars and leave. There is nothing gained by the Grove only closed streets and lack of parking spaces. I had to park in a garage today, at 7:30 am, just to go to the gym because all the street parking, which is usually all open, was taken by the racers. Then at the end of the race they all got in their cars and left. They didn't even have to pay for parking since it was before 10 am, so they basically didn't spend a dime in the Grove.

These races need to be moved downtown or to midtown. Sorry for all the bitching, but Coconut Grove has become an unbearable place to live these days. Just wait for the Main Highway street job and South Bayshore Drive. The worst is yet to come.

Check this column out in the Miami Herald by Fabiola Santiago, I am not the only one fed up: "Residents are fed up with runaway development."

For linking to this one story, just click on the time it was posted & just this story will open for sharing - only through social media. Not copying and pasting.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most construction work can be done in one fifth of the time if efficiency had anything to do with such projects. Private school traffic jams need to be contained within school grounds instead of clogging the narrow surrounding streets, it is not fair on the public and public schools seem to get the kids in and out a lot faster also public schools are built with city design and traffic planning. So private schools should think of processing the traffic within their own grounds, not on public streets so unreasonably.

April 18, 2015 11:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have you heard of the concept of "helicoptering" maybe parents should let their kids be a little free and learn to be independent:

April 18, 2015 11:28 AM  
Anonymous Dexter said...

I tried to go to my boat at Dinner Key Marina this morning at 8am.
Police told my I had to wait until the race was over, which would be 11am. Screwed my whole day up.

Is this legal?

April 18, 2015 11:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You aren't allowed to let your kids wander free unsupervised, you will get arrested and cops will hold your children for hours without telling you because of "child neglect". Just ask the family in Maryland who have had this happen to them twice in the last few months. Also, I'm not sure you understand the definition of gentrification. That isn't what is happening to the Grove, gentrification is when people come in and build in low-income areas and push out the low-income families because they can no longer afford the rent. Since the houses and condos in the Grove are already only available to those with large incomes, low income families can't afford to live here. Gentrification is what would happen if all the people living in Village West got pushed out and it turned into the rest of the Grove.

April 18, 2015 12:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's simply because our "representatives" couldn't care less about our "quality of life". It's all about $$$ construction projects, juicy deals, contracts..

Instead of focusing on 1 area, FINISHING IT, then move to the next, or at least coordinate traffic and inconveniences much better. Nope, it's completely improvised, uncoordinated, after the juicy deal is done. Then they take forever to finish ONE freaking block.

April 18, 2015 1:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Completely disagree with you about the races. There are only 2 local races, 3 at the most per year, and on weekends, a few early morning hours. (ALS, FICA). The Marathon goes everywhere, from downtown. And all cities/villages also have their events, which are great for the communities.

April 18, 2015 1:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is the 25th year of the 1040 race. Use to be on the 15th, now its the Saturday after tax day. Every year for 25 years. It raises money for charities. Next year will be 26. Maybe its time to get use to it. If you moved to the Grove less than 25 years ago, you are the newbie, not the race. Mark your calendar now and be prepared. Next year on April 16th there will be the 26th year of the 1040 race.

It's also kind of interesting that people ride in a car to a gym to get exercise and then complain about parents driving their kids to school. Those kids do not live down the block from their fancy $30,000 a year schools. They come from places like Coral Gables and Pinecrest. I do agree, though, that the Grove looks like one big construction zone. I try to ride my bike when I can. It saves me a lot of headaches. Maybe you should take your own advise that you give to the students. Get to where you're going without your car!!!

(Sorry you're having a bad day.)

April 18, 2015 1:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I got a letter from the city telling me basically not to even try to leave my house tomorrow. (Sunday) Some kind of race. Again. Everything about the development of the Grove stinks to high heaven. Redoing the waterfront, with crappy ideas, and everybody involved has been bribed to go along with it. You know who you are. Meanwhile, our second and third generation Groveites cannot afford to live with miles of their hometown, because everything is millions of dollars. The developers are waiting patiently for the rest of us to die off so they can complete their townhouse takeover.

April 18, 2015 1:58 PM  
Blogger Tony Scornavacca Jr. said...

Excellent post. All true. ... Thank God for the cool people, the trees, and the bayside atmosphere.

April 18, 2015 2:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Think things are bad now? Just wait for all the new residents in the Terra and Related projects start renovating their individual units. Wait until they start bringing in their contractors. Quality of life? You could ask your commissioner if he wasn't being chauffeured 24/7 by a policeman in a City SUV.

April 18, 2015 2:52 PM  
Anonymous Steve Dloogoff said...

When streets need repair, we have to live with that. As far as safety in front of schools -THE SAFETY OF OUR CHILDREN IS THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE!

Suggest if you were late for an appointment, PLAN AHEAD and leave earlier!

AND: If you don't like the progress in the grove: your free to move!!!! It's still a free country.

Steve Dloogoff

April 18, 2015 4:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:35PM Free for who, can you be more specific please?

April 18, 2015 6:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The grove has been sold down the river. What was once a comfortable artistically exciting community with reasonably sized family homes and walkable streets and neighbors that knew each other and related to a common denominator ,a common civility and openness to accept each other at face value has been hijacked by the me me me me me and only me crowd. And the concrete and money will never have bounds . There will always be Sarnoffians to pave the way. The privileged have their lackys paid for and delivered to city hall. As the landscape changes and the take over accelerates those of us who still believe in civility and fair play and appreciate and understand what has been lost are ridiculed by the new invaders,sometimes in this very forum. It is not just here in Coconut Grove but all across the landscape wherever money wants to be. The cat is out of the bag here and there will be no recovery. We elected people to oversee and the process of community development and to hopefully protect the citizens that voted. We unfortunately have elected a body that does not feel beholding to the electorate , a commissioner that finds his motivation elsewhere. It would easy to get personal but that won't help solve the problem. It is imperative that we do not create a dynasty or the blame will fall on us. All of the ills that have fallen on our community could have been mitigated but we trusted the wrong guy and hence have been steamrolled by the Yankee dollar.
There are simply too many names in the hat. Too many spoilers . Anyone that is running for commissioner that obviously has a snowballs chance in hell should pull out now. The grove is only part of the district and only those that can realistically carry the distric as a whole should stay in. If not then the Yankee dollar and a fractured vote Will usher in the Sarnoffians for probably two more painful terms.

April 18, 2015 7:48 PM  
Blogger J said...

Normally appreciate your work, but to complain about parents picking up / dropping off their kids from schools is absolutely absurd. This lovely little village we live in is surrounded by alot of really bad people. You dont have kids, so very easy for you to make a comment like that.

April 18, 2015 7:53 PM  
Blogger Seth Sklarey said...

I have lived in Coconut Grove 48 years and I question what direction we are headed. More multifamily developments of expensive condos, excessive gridlock of traffic, more stores. And for what purpose? So more developers can make millions while we long time residents suffer and become priced out of our neighborhoods, be subjected to hoards of outside people who come here to enjoy what it is becoming more and more difficult for our residents to enjoy? I am running for City Commission to improve our quality of life and make our hometown more livable, enjoyable and sane.
And you might want to join our opposition to FPL's proposal for two new nuclear power grnerated electric plants at Turkey Point together with a high voltage electric transmission line up the Metrorail right of way where we are proposing a new pedestrian jogger bicycling linear park.

April 18, 2015 8:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although the race was an inconvenience (and I am sure to some people more than others), if you keep pushing every event that happens in the Grove to other places, don't complain later when those areas have more business than the grove. You complain all the time that other Miami areas are getting the business that used to come to the Grove, but now you want to push those racers away. Makes no sense.

April 20, 2015 7:14 PM  
Anonymous Bill Kunz said...

If the pvt schools south of The Grove simply put the students on buses and sent them to a safe place with parking for all the mommies then everyone would be better off. The buses could be Mercedes or Lexus and the kids would not be embarrassed to actually ride a School bus.

April 20, 2015 11:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Steve Dloogof: This is not about safety of children. This is about rich people shutting down major roadways for their convenience, so that they (more likely their nannies) can pick up their kids quickly and easily, while having everyone else get stopped and wait for them.

These schools were ill-designed and ill-situatiated for the volume they are serving. They should fix that - others shouldn't have to accomodate them.

It's not safety - it's convenience for few, in exchange for inconvenience for everyone else.

April 22, 2015 4:58 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home