Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Board acts on surplus public lands at Celery Fields

This a bare-bones report of the Board's actions today, Nov. 28th, on three parcels near the Celery Fields known as "the Quads." The Commissioners and Interim Administrator Jonathan Lewis deliberated at length as to how they might realize funds from the sale of the parcels to address a $5.4 million shortfall in the County's budget.
Public parcels at Apex and Palmer Blvd.

Each of the three parcels brought a somewhat different decision:

  • SE Parcel - #1 (immediately adjacent to Celery Fields). 
    • Take off surplus temporarily - with stipulation that community bring possible uses to staff -- passed 5-0.
  • NW Parcel - #3 (with temporary fire station). 
    • Leave on surplus list - rezone it to a comp plan-compliant district using an independent consultant  --passed 5-0.
  • SW Parcel - #2 ("Gabbert" parcel - most difficult to decide). 
    • Remain on surplus list - community organizations to come back with realistic options for use before put it out for sale -- 6-month timeline - pass 4-1 (Detert voted no, unhappy with timeline stipulation.)

The Board also voted unanimously to sell a property at Washington Blvd. and Main Street without restrictions. It's currently a parking lot on the NE corner of Washington and Main St.

This particular sale is projected to realize approximately $4 million).

Jonathan Lewis's Recap of this portion of the meeting:

A joint statement from the supporters of the Fresh Start Initiative -- a proposal for a workshop that would establish a community-based consensus for these public lands -- was read into the record.

The Board's decision showed a willingness to receive suggestions from the Community. This is not quite the same thing as developing a coherent, informed long-term vision for the entire Celery Fields area, but it's a beginning.

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