Sarasota News Leader

03/01/2013

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MORE PROBLEMS LOOM The City Commission chambers are full before the start of the Walmart hearing on Feb. 26. Photo by Norman Schimmel ANALYSIS: CITY COMMISSION���S DECISION TO UPHOLD THE WALMART APPEAL RAISES THE QUESTION, WHAT IS NEXT? By Stan Zimmerman City Editor If you have ever trained a dog, you know how the infill kind) and to embrace ���economic deto drive it nuts. It does not take long. You re- velopment��� as a true planning goal. When staff ward and punish it for the same act. And so members did that for the Walmart project, it was Tuesday night, Feb. 26, with the City they essentially were setting themselves up Commission���s review of the appeal of a Plan- for a hearty slap in the face. By a 3-2 vote, the ning Board decision City Commission sidto approve a Walmart ed with the neighborstore at the Ringling hood group appealing Plaza Shopping CenIt���s clear something has to be done the Walmart decision, ter. about our code. This is absolutely overturned the best For months, if not something we need to be working on judgment of staff (and years, commissioners immediately. the Planning Board) urged city staffers to and set the stage for Paul Caragiulo be ���open for business,��� Commissioner a possibly expensive to fast-track new deCity of Sarasota velopment (especially lawsuit.

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