This is an update to tracking of progress to open Wildflower Park. See Tracker Chart below. There are two key phases to the park’s opening. One is a short term activity that opens the park as soon as possible for passive recreation and the other is a long term plan to upgrade the park to approved recommendations of the Comprehensive Waterfront Study. Recent information on the Comprehensive Waterfront Study can be found in the following article: http://bocawatch.org/comprehensive-waterfront-study-update/ and links to prior tracker updates are in Attachment 1 at the end of this article.
The status of the short term passive park plan is that there is no plan. The City is moving forward with work orders for the seawall repairs, possible docks and conceptual plans for the Wildflower site, but a conceptual plan doesn’t exist.
Following is a record of a City Council discussion on opening Wildflower as a passive park. This information is from the minutes of the December 12, 2016 City Council Workshop meeting.
“Council Member Singer commented on exploring a pedestrian promenade along the waterfront in Silver Palm Park and the Wildflower property. In general, members agreed that a promenade was always intended and should move ahead. Mr. Ahnell summarized that the seawall needed to be repaired and will have staff come back with a conceptual plan for a promenade, docks, and other necessary infrastructure.”
Four months have passed since this discussion and it appears no progress has been made on developing the plan.
Regarding land use designation changes, on July 26, 2016 the City Council voted to change the comprehensive plan map and zoning to designate the entire parcel commercial. Since the November 8th election results specify that the site is to be used for recreation, the future land use designation and zoning categories for the entire site should be changed from commercial to recreation.
A recent lawsuit tried to take advantage of this anomaly, in addition to other claims, to invalidate the November 8th referendum so it is important that the comprehensive plan map and zoning be changed to be consistent with the ordinance approved by the residents.
Two Comprehensive Waterfront Study tasks have been completed and this triggered the start of Tasks 1-3 and 1-4 that develop and present a conceptual master plan recommendation by EDSA. Another outreach is also planned. Note that the three planned completion dates for the study are approximate based on intervals specified in the EDSA work order.
BocaWatch will continue to track and report on the status of Wildflower Park.
Attachment 1 – Prior Wildflower Park Progress Tracking Articles