Belleair Development Updates
Due to the small number of Commissioners present for the hearing on the ‘Special Exception’ parking request from Belleair Development at 28th Avenue and 4th Street, the applicant chose to postpone the case (which is a choice given to all applicants when 4 votes are needed to pass and only 5 Commissioners are in attendance.) The proposal requires the demolition of a property in our National Register Historic District to provide what neighbors and HONNA consider to be excessive parking.
Because of the postponement, another application, also by Belleair, will be heard separately but at the same hearing for a Panera Bread with a drive-through feature proposed at 29th Avenue and 4th Street. If the drive-through is approved, there will not be adequate parking for this site, which is why Belleair wants additional parking at their adjacent property. Again, neighbors and HONNA are opposed to the drive-through for many obvious reasons including car exhaust, safety, stacking of cars, dangerous parking layout, not enough parking, and others.
Although a sign at the site states: ‘COMING SOON Panera Bread featuring a drive-thru’ neither of these projects has been approved by the Development Review Commission so no permits for construction can be issued. Both applications will be heard at the October 5 meeting of the Development Review Commission.
As of late August, no development application has been submitted for this property.
St. Pete’s Landscaping Regulations
St. Pete’s neighborhoods contribute enormously to the popularity and beauty of our city. Old Northeast is one of the most desirable because of our historic architecture, lush tree canopy, brick streets, granite curbs and green landscaping. Recently, some of our green landscaping has been given over to rocks, shells and other hardened, impervious surface materials, all of which are not permitted by City Code, and do not add to our ‘green’ community.
HONNA asks residents to help us maintain our ‘leafy’ reputation by observing the following:
- Using only a layer of sod or other living ground cover in yards abutting streets or avenues and in the rights-of-way (parkways).
- Removing hard, impervious materials such as rocks, gravel, and shells that are not permitted by code.
- Requesting a parkway tree (at no cost to you) next year to keep your home and block shady, cool and ‘leafy’.
To voice your concerns about these proposals and their impact on the neighborhood and its residents, email the following city departments and copy HONNA: Derek.Kilborn@stpete.org (Manager, Urban Planning and Historic Preservation Division); Elizabeth.Abernethy@stpete.org (Director of Planning and Development); Dave.Goodwin@stpete.org (Zoning Department); HONNApresident@gmail.com.