Letter to the Editor

To the editor:

I attended the Aug. 13 Sarasota County Council of Neighborhood Associations (CONA) meeting to hear from all of the candidates running for the District 4 County Commission seat. Not surprisingly, Al Maio was a “no-show,” as he has been on many occasions when citizens’ groups expressed concerns about projects and development in Sarasota County. I have received election campaign material from Maio which outlines his platform and views on serving community residents with the following pledges: “Committed to keeping our community safe”; “Improving our quality of life”; “Making decisions in the best interests of all of our residents.”

With these comments in mind, how does Maio justify approving the Grand Lakes Village project, consisting of 1,097 dwelling units at the end of Ibis Street, a two-lane country road with only one way in and one way out? How does Maio allow county Village development density, when the core principals of New Urbanism are abandoned, where there is no walkable commercial center and where there are no multi-use functions, as required by Sarasota 2050 Village regulations?

This decision has created a safety hazard for the existing homeowners. It will degrade our quality of life, and it certainly is not in the best interests of area residents. As the group leader opposing Grand Lakes and a District 4 resident, I am very disappointed in Maio’s lack of interest in our collective concerns as expressed at the commissioners’ hearings. Now, it’s our turn not to support him for re-election!

David E. Anderson