Mayor Announces Comp Plan Task Force

Comp Plan Review in 2016

Mayor Announces Comp Plan Task Force

Leary%20HeadshotIn the closing minutes of the May 23 Commission Meeting, Mayor Steve Leary announced the formation of a three-member Comprehensive Plan Task Force. Leary explained the purpose of the task force is to “help [staff] synthesize all the information from the advisory boards and to keep [the review process] on schedule.”

Comp Plan Task Force

Named to the task force are Nancy Miles, Marc Reicher and Laura Turner.

Reicher served as chair of the Economic Development Advisory Board. Laura Turner is a certified city planner who has also served on Winter Park advisory boards. Nancy Miles served on the Tennis Advisory Board and the Library Task Force.

Comp Plan: How We Grow

The Comprehensive Plan is the blueprint for how the City develops and grows over the years. The City reviews the plan every seven years and makes a formal report to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO). The plan was last updated in 2009, so is due for review in 2016.

City May Choose to Update Comp Plan – or Not

According to the DEO, the state agency that oversees Comp Plan reviews, the City may “determine whether the need exists to amend the comprehensive plan to reflect changes in state requirements since the last time the comprehensive plan was updated.” The DEO website notes that Florida has relaxed its regulations to afford local governments “more discretion” in determining whether they need to update their comp plans.

WP Review to be Public Process

City Communications Director Clarissa Howard told the Voice that the Winter Park Comp Plan review, “. . . will be a thorough public process to review each element [and] will involve the input and analysis of city staff, advisory boards and residents. The city will offer a variety of opportunities for public participation at advisory board meetings, special public workshops and City Commission meetings.”

City to Publish Comp Plan News

“All dates, locations and times will be posted on the Comp Plan page of the city website at,” Howard wrote.

Howard also noted that information will be emailed regularly to those who sign up for the Comp Plan email subscription at

Library Public Info Meetings

Three Meetings Next Week

Library Public Info Meetings

The Winter Park Public Library will host three Community Conversations next week. Meetings will be in the Library Community Room on the first floor.

Dates & Times:

Wednesday June 1 — 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 Noon
Thursday, June 2 — 5:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, June 4 — 12:00 Noon to 2:30 p.m.

Public Conversations About the New Facility

Residents will have the opportunity to get facts about the proposed project. Discussion will include the characteristics and best practices of 21st-century libraries. Library personnel will be on hand to gather residents’ feedback to further define our community’s priorities for materials, services and programs in the new facility.

Open-House Format

The three sessions will follow an informal, open-house-style format. Flexible times are designed to accommodate as many residents as possible.

P&Z Upholds West Side Single-Family Zoning

P&Z Upholds West Side Single-Family Zoning

On the night of Tuesday, May 3, Winter Park residents spoke to the Planning & Zoning (P&Z) Board to successfully defend the single family scale and character of the Hannibal neighborhood in west Winter Park against another expensive, speculative development of high-density, multi-family units.

Developer Asks to Build Three-Story Duplexes

Attorney Becky Wilson, representing the developer, came before P&Z to request approval to develop the properties at 326 and 354 Hannibal Square East and at 465, 463 and 455 West Lyman Avenue with six three-story duplexes totaling twelve residential units.

City Planner Recommends Denial

City Planning Director Jeff Briggs, who presented the application to the P&Z, recommended P&Z deny the applicant’s request on the basis of the Comprehensive Plan, which “strongly discourages” out of scale development in neighborhoods with single family zoning.

Comp Plan: Land Use Bible?

Ensuing discussion centered more on the purpose of the Comprehensive Plan, to protect the village scale and character of Winter Park, than it did on the relative merits of the proposed development. In his recommendation for denial, Briggs referred to the Comprehensive Plan as our “land use Bible.”

That sparked a spirited response from attorney Becky Wilson, who countered that the Comp Plan was not “divinely created.”

No More Chipping Away

When the floor was opened for comment, one after another, the neighbors approached the podium, to decry the speculative development of multi-family projects that are “chipping away” at the character of the Hannibal neighborhood.

Several also displayed a detailed knowledge of the City’s Comprehensive Plan. Notable among them was Bob Cambric.

Talk of Social Justice

Citizens and P&Z members both spoke of social justice. Barry Greenstein, who had worked on the staff of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission in Washington, D.C., warned about discriminatory zoning practices.

P&Z Upholds the Comp Plan

The men and woman who make up the Planning & Zoning Board listened to the residents. They heard the voice of the people. They upheld the recommendation of City staff and the principals set forth in the Comprehensive Plan. They voted unanimously to deny the applicant’s request to further chip away at the essence of the Hannibal neighborhood.

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