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Letters From BocaFirst Readers

Letters to Boca First

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Subject:  Thanks! 

Thank you so much for putting out this newsletter. I find the articles very timely, informative and to the point. It’s the best place to find out what’s going on in downtown Boca. Your visual presentation of the COVID stats are great, provides more clarity and depth to the numbers. Although I hope you can stop this part of your reporting soon! 

Terry Stern
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Subject:  Amphitheater Renovation

The corporation should investigate the possibility of building a joint project with Delray. 

The cost to build and maintain such a venue will be enormous, and Boca taxpayers should not be expected to shoulder the entire financial burden.  A venue like this will benefit both communities and may even drive more business because of its joint venture status.

Andy Vissicchio – Former Member of the Boca Financial Advisory Board.
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Subject:  Assisted Living

My mom is in independent living. She has been in Delray Beach, at Pheonix, on Linton Bvld. 

She is 98, and they won’t let me go in her apartment to see her. It has been almost 6 months. She can come out and say hi, but not the same. She needs me. I can’t go in her place to see what she needs. I don’t know how long she will be with us. We moved her here 5 years ago. My brother and I are very close knit with mom. Please help. Her memory is not good. Thanks 

Sandi Gardiner
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Subject:  Survival Chances

The title of Jim’s excellent article should be “You Didn’t Get What You Were Promised.” Back when I founded Boca Beautiful, the “fix” was in. Developers were able to twist or ignore the standards in Ordinance 4035 to maximize square foot profit. Do you see anything resembling Addison Mizner in the sterile boxes that are the Hyatt and the Mark? If you like Via Mizner, you’ll love it when it is three boxes instead of one. The City Council shamelessly amended the rules to allow Tower 155 to be build on a lot that is way too small for its bulk. The apartments may be elegant inside, but outside Boca’s citizenry (and neighboring small businesses) get to look at the incredible hulk. Palmetto Promenade was extremely controversial, but developers managed to break up its mass with clever design. I was actively involved in opposition to the Alina on SE Mizner Boulevard, but we reached a COMPROMISE with the developer after hard fought negotiations involving the newly-elected City Council. It’s not yet finished, but what is going up seems to be the most attractive new building in East Boca. The lesson from all this is to listen to those who are most affected by new construction, i.e. the neighbors, and follow the aesthetic guidelines that are set forth in the law. Avarice and inattention to those guidelines are what brought the Ugly Sisters to Downtown Boca. 

John Gore
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Subject:  WildFlower & Silver Palm Park

My son is a resident of Boca. He owns a boat but launches it in Delray. There are many reason , mostly because Silver Palm is chaos. Everyone driving around look for a spot to park, boaters and people who want to just relax and view the intracoastal water way. Then Rangers who are not helpful . There was a mom who is going to get picked up for her birthday of boating with her friends at Silver Palm, by her son. 

No where to park. No where to park. No where to park . It has been 11 years since the purchase of Wildflower, i know because i took the original picture that started the ball rolling for the property to become a community place for all to enjoy. I find it ridiculous that all of this is taking so long , believing too many egos are involved. How long is long enough ? 

Linda Jackson
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Subject:  Wildflower Park 


You cannot expect a superior outcome from an inferior process. I attended one meeting where EDSA made a presentation to the City Council and at best I would describe the decision making process as ‘the art of muddling through’ It was impossible to differentiate between a ‘decision’ versus a ‘suggestion’ versus a ‘random comment’. It only took about 15 minutes for me to want to tear my hair out. At the outset the city should have given EDSA two things – a set of criteria (deterministic versus constraint) and a budget. From that point there could only be three possible outcomes: 

1. A design that meets the criteria and the budget 

2.A design that meets the budget but not the criteria 

3. A design that meets the criteria but not the budget 

Given these three scenarios – I have no idea where we are. 

I also have some concerns around how EDSA is being compensated for their work. It they’re on a fixed price contract then they are fools and if they’re on a monthly retainer then we are fools. 

Ian MacDougall
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