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Lawsuit filed to ‘quash’ approval of Aqua by the Bay

MANATEE COUNTY – Several opponents of the proposed Aqua by the Bay development are suing to “quash” the Manatee County Commission’s unanimous approval of the controversial project.

The plaintiffs include former county commissioner Joe McClash, the local environmental organization Suncoast Waterkeeper, ecotourism operators Kathe Fannon and Katie Scarlett Turin, Longboat Key resident Larry Grossman and three residents of Legends Bay (a development east of the Aqua by the Bay property) - Beverly Hill, Arlene Dukauskas and Lenka Sukova.

The case is assigned to Circuit Judge Lon S. Arend. A court date has not been scheduled.

On Oct. 3, after a contentious public hearing that started in May and had several continuances, Manatee commissioners approved the 529-acre development between El Conquistador Parkway and Sarasota Bay and partially west of the intersection of 75th Street West and 53rd Avenue.

As Cargor Partners, developers Carlos Beruff and Larry Lieberman intend to build 2,894 residences (2,384 multi-family units and 510 single-family lots) and 78,000 square feet of retail. Their plan calls for 16 residential buildings up to 95 feet high and a yet-to-be determined number of buildings between 36 and 75 feet.