Carrollton’s development project will have an adverse impact on TRAFFIC, TREES and TAXES, creating a significant financial burden on our community that will result in a cumulative domino effect, which drastically reduces quality of life and heightens ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTERS and PUBLIC SAFETY RISKS.
A June 25, 2020 traffic study indicates the proposed project will add an estimated 1,438 daily school trips, increasing already congested daily school traffic. The study recommends 123 parking spaces when Carrollton’s plans provide ONLY 54 parking spaces. Crash Analysis Data reported that during the last 3 years there were 138 accidents within one-third mile in any direction of Villa woodbine.Your most precious MEASURABLE personal resource is your time and money, which literally goes up in smoke it in traffic.
The updated Application drawings submitted for the July 23,2020 Commission hearing include the 2018 ER BROWNELL survey and Arborist Lisa Hammer’s report which both indicate there are 220 trees at Villa Woodbine. The applicant’s Team testified at the July 23 Commission Hearing they are keeping ONLY 40 trees and relocating 7 trees.The proposed school will in effect decimate the mature and lush tree canopy on Villa Woodbine’s 3.7-acre site that Miami 21 Code is intended to protect.
There are already 18 schools in Coconut Grove serving over 6700 students an area that is less than 5 Sq miles. Of these, 12 private schools are not paying taxes on RE assessed value that in 2020, totaled over $304 million in SCHOOL BOARD EXEMPTION VALUE. When completed, this proposed school’s taxable value is estimated to be approximately $50,000,000.ALL City of Miami Taxpayers are subsidizing the private schools where as much as 75% of the student body and faculty reside outside of the City of Miami. An increased tax burden hits harder on the households in the City's poorer neighborhoods because real estate taxes are a higher % of the household income in poor neighborhoods than they are as a % of household income in more affluent neighborhoods.
The project includes new construction of over 104,000 SF of non-pervious surfaces (sidewalks, driveways, buildings, decks) will be detrimental to an already delicate environmental area which has frequent rainwater flooding. The new construction combined with the proposed destruction of almost over 70% of Villa Woodbine’s mature tree canopy will dramatically slow the rate of water reaching the ground and reduce soil areas that accommodate drainage, thereby creating flooding of surrounding properties. Other factors will adversely affect the climate resiliency are even more new roadblocks during peak hours that create increased climate-altering pollution caused by traffic emissions, and modification which in effect obscure the protected Silver Bluff.The proposed school will likely exacerbate flooding and other environmental issues already posing a real threat to this coastal neighborhood.
Current traffic already impedes access for Fire Safety, Law Enforcement, and Life Rescue vehicles – and any additional increase in traffic will pose significant life-safety hazards and increase Safety Risks for Pedestrians and Cyclists. Surrounding areas are already stressed in terms of vehicular ingress/egress, off street parking and pedestrian safety. Tigertail Ave is designated for student drop-off. The site on South Bayshore Dr designated for exit is directly in front of the entrance to Kennedy Park where AC’s Icee truck operates. This will create more traffic roadblocks and confusion, further increasing public safety risks. Furthermore, the driveways exceed the maximum widths allowed by Miami 21 at the entry on Tigertail Ave and its exit on South Bayshore Drive.The proposed school poses amplified risks to PUBLIC SAFETY 1ST responders (fire-rescue-police).
New Construction has a 104,000 SF footprint that is 8 times larger than the existing Villa. It is completely out of scale and proportion to the needs of the neighborhood and lacks compatibility with the neighborhood in height, massing and use. The school’s two-story entrance facing Tigertail Ave is merely 19 FT setback from the two-lane street. The 34 FT high building will tower over the single-family residences across the street. It is plainly clear that in addition to not matching with the in place zoning of Single-Family Residence, the massing and proximity to Tigertail and its much smaller homes neighboring the property, that the current plan is INCONGRUENT with the neighborhood.The massively overpowering scale will have an adverse impact on the neighborhood’s property values.
The Site is located within an Environment Preservation Overlay District and a Scenic Transportation Corridor. The pool along S Bayshore drive is incongruous with the Scenic Transportation Corridor. The applicant’s plan to install a row of trees to block the site line to the pool will similarly obstruct site lines into the rising hill of the Silver Bluff along with the tree canopy along the Scenic Transportation Corridor of South Bayshore Drive.
The Villa Woodbine site is located within a High Probability Archaeological Conservation Area. The proposed school project requires an Archaeological Study. A Phase 1 Archaeological Study will NOT likely be completed prior to a hearing that may determine that the Villa Woodbine property would have “appropriateness of use” as a school. A full analysis of the property by an Archaeologist would more fully determine whether the current plan being proposed by Applicant adequately protects the special contents of the conservation area. From the 1988 Historic Designation Report: “Villa Woodbine’s location on the limestone bluff that follows Biscayne Bay is an area of archaeological sensitivity. Both the Indian and early settlers favored this natural feature because of its location near the sea and its protected elevation.”Due to the Villa Woodbine site’s close proximity to Biscayne Bay, it is highly probable that its grounds contain significant archaeological objects.
Bayshore in Grove is a pending 501c3, Non-Profit organization dedicated to the advocacy of smart growth strategies critical for climate resilience and for maintaining the unique sense of place that encourages the Coconut Grove “State of Mind”.
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