To all citizens of Maitland, a heartfelt thank you for giving me the privilege to continue serving as your mayor for the next three years. During my campaign, as I walked the neighborhoods and spoke with many of you, your main directive was clear: to continue working toward the development of our new pedestrian-friendly downtown for all of us to enjoy. I commit to you that I will continue to work hard and do everything in my power to keep your confidence including working closely with our City Council, city boards, city staff and most importantly, with you, our citizens to make our new pedestrian-friendly downtown a reality.
When I first took office back in January of last year, my first four goals were clear to me. First, reunite our city Council and our citizens in order to enable us all to work together. Second, to streamline our permitting process in order to make it more attractive for development to occur in our city. Third, to finish the updating of our Land Development Code (LDC) to ensure that high quality design standards were in place before development would begin. Finally, to standardize and upgrade the zoning of our downtown properties to allow more flexible mixed-use development. Since then, the first two goals of city unity and streamline permitting have been achieved and the second two goals of upgrading the LDC and the rezoning of our downtown will be completed by the end of February this year.
With that said, in March of this year, our city will be “Open for Business” and ready to begin the welcomed opportunity to work with the development community to achieve the realization of the first phase of the development of our new downtown. The land area of the first phase is the two blocks bordered by George Avenue to the north, Packwood Avenue to the south, U.S. Highway 17-92 to the east and Maitland Avenue to the west. Future phases from Packwood Avenue south to Lake Lily are not financially feasible for redevelopment at this time.
Since this is our new downtown, it is very important that the evaluation process for the evolution of our downtown design and the ultimate decisions that will be made in the creation of our new downtown be a team effort including citizen involvement.
As conceptual plans come forward, there will be open public workshops giving all citizens the opportunity to participate. As the design concepts are refined, multiple public meetings will be held by the Design Review Committee along with multiple public hearings by the Planning and Zoning Commission and City Council giving further input opportunities for our citizens. In the end, the final design will be the result of a joint effort by all of us that we can be proud of.
We have already had preliminary meetings with a number of developers but nothing has progressed to the point of scheduling any workshops as yet. As soon as the design concept or concepts are far enough along, we will begin announcing dates for the public workshop(s). This process will continue until we feel we have a consensus of agreement for the design of our new downtown. We will then start the public hearing process as stated above.
With all the interest being shown by the development community, the future prospects look extremely bright. The present reduction in land prices and construction costs affords our best opportunity in many years for realizing the creation of our pedestrian-friendly new downtown. We need to take advantage of it now. With my experience in architectural design, construction and development, I am looking forward to guiding and protecting our city throughout the design and construction process.
Again, thank you for your vote of confidence.
City Council Agenda
City Council meets the second and fourth Mondays of the month at 6:30 p.m. The next meeting is scheduled for Feb. 13 in the Council Chambers, 1776 Independence Lane. Below is the agenda for that meeting.
• Maitland Little League 50th Anniversary
• Heritage Lands – Pushpa Seth
• Ordinance – Creating the Downtown Maitland Zoning District
• Ordinance – Rezone Properties within the Downtown Maitland Zoning District
• Ordinance – Development Agreement Amendment Process
• Approve Council Minutes of Jan. 23
• Receive Planning & Zoning Commission Minutes of Dec. 8, Dec. 12 and Jan. 5
• Receive Parks & Recreation Advisory Board Minutes of Nov. 2 and Dec. 7
• Accept 2012 Municipal Election Results
• Towing/Wrecker Services Contract – Tri-County Towing
• Arapaho Trail Sidewalk Contract – R. W. Paul Construction
• Thistle Lane Calming Devices – Barracuda Building Corporation
• Revise Sanitary Sewer System CIP
• Resolution - FDOT Joint Use Agreement Rail Station
• Resolution - FDOT Locally Funded Agreement
• Department of Transportation Joint Participation Agreement – “Art in Transit Program”
• Letter to Trader Joe’s – Requested by Councilwoman Reponen
• Matching Grant – Food Pantry Project – Requested by Councilman Bonus
For updates, visit www.itsmymaitland.com