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BOCC Votes 4-3 to Allow Comp Plan Amendment for Housing Near Evers Reservoir

After contentious debate and strong public opposition at Thursday's land use meeting, Manatee County Commissioners voted 4-3 in favor of a comp plan amendment that would change a parcel of land owned by the City of Bradenton in east county to Res-6, facilitating its sale to a home developer.

The land is near Evers Reservoir and the city’s water treatment plan. The city said that it had held the land as surplus in case it needed to expand that facility but decided it would be best to sell the asset and use the money for current infrastructure needs within the city.

At the last meeting, the county broached the issue of negotiating to get another parcel of city-owned land that would allow them to connect the southern dead end at nearby Natalie Way (which connects to SR70 to the north), to Honore Ave. This would create a second north-south thoroughfare between SR70 and Honore, improving the flow of traffic to accommodate the increased development, while also acting as a replacement for the controversial Tara Bridge.

That possibility hit a major roadblock at the start of the meeting, however, when Caleb Grimes, attorney for the developer, Taylor Morrison, explained that they had discovered a previous agreement between the city and the county, in which the city yielded right of ways needed for Honore’s 2010 expansion to Lockwood Ridge (the existing N-S thoroughfare between it and SR70) and, as part of that deal, were assured that Natalie Way would not be considered for a future north-south thoroughfare, better protecting its reservoir and plant.