To Concerned Citizens of Historic Point Washington

Discussion in 'Real Estate' started by Dave Rauschkolb, Oct 31, 2005.

  1. Dave Rauschkolb

    Dave Rauschkolb Beach Fanatic

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    At the commissioners meeting on Tuesday we were successful in delaying the approval of the Oaks at Eden Development for two more weeks. Thanks to all who helped with research and sending letters to the commissioners. The Commissioners asked the Developer, Hendco to meet with us to try to work out a compromise.

    We are asking your help to send this letter to the commissioners or pass it on to anyone who has not yet sent one to them. We are asking them to deny the development unless they modify it to be compatible with the existing community of Historic Point Washington. Thank you for all your help!! Also Randy Harelson and Jim Foley were interviewed on WMBB TV last night about our efforts!! If you agree with our efforts PLEASE send a letter to the Commissioners. THANK YOU!!!

    Dave Rauschkolb

    COUNTY COMMISSIONERS:

    ? Dist. 1 ? Scott Brannon, (850) 622-3081, brascott@co.walton.fl.us
    ? Dist. 2 ? Kenneth Pridge, (850) 834-6328, prikenneth@co.walton.fl.us
    ? Dist. 3 ? Larry Jones, (850) 892-8474, jonlarry@co.walton.fl.us
    ? Dist. 4 ? Ro Cuchens, (850) 835-4834, cucro@co.walton.fl.us
    ? Dist. 5 ? Cindy Meadows, (850) 622-3059, meacindy@co.walton.fl.us




    Dear Commissioner,
    Please count me as a concerned citizen opposed to the height and density of the proposed Oaks At Eden Development. It does not meet compatibility requirements with the surrounding neighborhoods of Pt. Washington.

    Sincerely,
    Your Name
    Your Address
     
  2. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    Dave, sorry I couldn't attend the meeting on Tuesday. I did see the story on this morning's news.
    What are the chances that Tim (Tim Henderson of Hendco) will actually sit down with the locals of Pt Washington to discuss ideas for changes to his plan? I know Tim can be a stubborn old mule at times. By the way, I dig your little place back there, next to the subject property. :D

    For the record, I think it is great to hear residents say that they are not opposed to development, as long as it fits the surrounding area. I heard both Randy and Foley say this in the interviews. Otherwise, Commissioners might think that the residents of Pt Washington were against every type of development, and the crying voices would not be heard. Great job of being both professional and concerned. :clap_1:

    For everyone concerned with only 30-A, I urge you to remember that today this development may not concern you, but remember who you want to be on your side, when the day comes and you are the one being affected. Stand up and make your voice known, and help fight to keep the integrity of one of the first two settlements in this area. Alone, we may fail, but together, we make a great chorus.
     
  3. Dave Rauschkolb

    Dave Rauschkolb Beach Fanatic

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    Well said Joe, good words, thanks for your support and insight. We met a little over a week ago and all agreed our message should be to welcome the development yet be very direct and specific that this is not about anything but compatibility and it isn't. We have the resources to drag this out a very long time if necessary. We don't plan on giving up any time soon.

    As for weather Tim Henderson will be reasonable remains to be seen. Pretty much at the meeting they did not budge an inch. They made a few non binding promises and lowered the heights from 40 to 38 feet. Big deal! We will not settle for any more than 32 feet (2 1/2 stories) and 4 units per acre, not 6 & 1/2.

    Peter Horn with the Eden's landing development came to the community and listened. He modified his plan even against the advice of his investors to do the right thing for the community as a whole and it will come back to him ten fold. There is no substitute for community support and nothing worse then community scorn. These guys have an opportunity to step up to the plate and turn this around. I sincerely hope they do.

    If you want to help, feel free to join the HPWA to make the designation of Point Washington as a historic town. You might have to be less anonymous though. :cool: Thanks Joe
     
  4. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    You never know, I may already be a member. :scratch:
     
  5. Dave Rauschkolb

    Dave Rauschkolb Beach Fanatic

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    HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!! A Haa! I think you could be Kurt's alter ego/pseudonym
     
  6. Miss Kitty

    Miss Kitty Meow

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    Hmmmmm...where's Angela Lansbury?
     
  7. Rita

    Rita margarita brocolia

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    I sent out the e-mail today, personalized a little. We looked at lots in Pt. Washington when we bought. Nice area.
     
  8. Kurt Lischka

    Kurt Lischka Admin Staff Member

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    I couldn't possibly shoot that many pictures. :lol:


    Look for a tall, kind stranger, with a smile, wearing [​IMG].
     
  9. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    Now I cannot wear my [​IMG] :bang: Thanks for nothin' ;-)

    It gets difficult trying to remember which username I am typing under. :rolling:

    Stranger in Walton Co? Nah.
     
  10. Jdarg

    Jdarg SoWal Expert

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    SJ- I picture you walking down the street with a little frog parade behind you. Little happy frogs all drinking Guinness.
     
  11. SoWalSally

    SoWalSally Beach Fanatic

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    Residents of Point Washington are concerned about the proposed Oaks at Eden which that they see as incompatible with their community.
    The height of the homes in the proposed subdivision is the major sticking point between residents and the developer. The area surrounding the Oaks contains buildings that are one to one and a half stories tall. The homes proposed for the Oaks will be three stories. Originally the homes were 50, feet then lowered to 40 feet. Then at the Walton Board of County Commissioners meeting on Nov. 8, the developer agreed to lower them to 38 feet.
    Residents in Point Washington are asking for a maximum height of 32 feet. They say they are willing to work with the developer to come up with a plan more suitable to the area.
    ?We?re asking for (the developer) to work with us,? Ed Berry, a seven year resident of Point Washington, said. ?We?re not asking for total denial. We are asking for proper development.?
    Compatibility is at the center of the debate. With one side saying the development is compatible and the other saying it isn?t.
    ?Compatibility in Walton County is elusive,? Randy Gardner, speaking in favor of the development, said to the BCC. ?It can always be interpreted. There will always be a group that will be against something. This project meets the (Land Development Code) and we would like you to approve.?
    Gardner added that he would be wiling to work with the residents of Point Washington to address their concerns, but doesn?t want their recommendations to be contingent on approval.
    Discussions with the board got spirited at times and on many occasions audience members sympathetic to the Point Washington residents vocally called out their opinions and clapped in support of speakers asking for a redesign of the Oaks.
    Commissioner Cindy Meadows call the Oaks a ?cookie cutter? community referring to how many planned communities all look the same. She wants it to be redesigned to be more compatible with Point Washington.
    Gardner responded saying that ?cookie cutter? is a subjective term and that someone will always disprove of a development?s design.
    Commissioners Larry Jones, Scott Brannon and Meadows all voiced support for the developer and Point Washington residents to meet and work something out.
    ?I don?t think they are very far apart,? Jones said. ?I encourage the applicant to get with the folks and talk about it. It might be in the applicant?s best interest to take a couple of weeks and see if these issues can get ironed out.?
    Commissioner Ro Cuchens supported approval of the Oaks.
    ?The historical area (of Point Washington) needs to evolve,? Cuchens said, which got a negative response from many of those in attendance.
    Cuchens made a motion to approve the development, but the motion failed when no one seconded it.

    Brannon moved to table the development until the Nov. 22 BCC meeting so the two sides could come to an agreement. The motion passed 4-1 with Cuchens voting nay.
    The BCC instructed Pat Blackshear, director of Planning and Development, and her staff to meet with the developer and residents of Point Washington to try and work out some of the issues.
     
  12. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    Ro can be a real good 'ole boy (jack@ss) sometimes.
     
  13. Miss Kitty

    Miss Kitty Meow

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    When is he up for re-election...when hopefully someone will run against him!!! That is as nice as I can be without losing it!!
     
  14. DBOldford

    DBOldford Beach Fanatic

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    Hooray! This is a really good opportunity for the people to have direct input into that development. If you have a list of constructive suggestions and back them up with County General Plan goals and policies, you will have a powerful argument. It's always a good idea to try and work with the developer, but also good to continue lobbying your Commissioners in a reasonable and well argued manner. Not a bad idea to retain an attorney, either, even if you don't actually use their services (or need to). Sometimes you just have to get their attention. Letters to the editor of the local newspaper also help. If there is a local planner who will review the project and give you something in writing (as to compatibility of the project with codes and environmental sensitivity), often better than at attorney but doesn't give you the same "snap" with the development interest. Finally, keep in touch with the Planning Director and her staff, because they are in the driver's seat. Good luck. The first cut is the deepest!
     
  15. Santiago

    Santiago Beach Fanatic

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    I am sure you're right but it gets tiresome seeing his name surface time and again. People need to vote.
     
  16. aquaticbiology

    aquaticbiology fishlips

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    Cmon you guys - thats what county commissioners DO. Ive dealt with them long enough in my former career that I know if you want something done, like a seawall removed, you simply go to the appropriate commissioner, gain a private meeting, contribute whatever it takes to their re-election campaign to get the job done and ride his hide until he completes it. Thats the way it works and its time for everyone to realise there is no such thing as a honest politician, at least not after their first term. I will give some few of them some minor credit with the disclaimer "Unless they have no nose and cannot smell the way the wind is blowing."

    Politicians stink.
     
  17. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    I would mostly agree with you on that one. Around here, the CC's do it for their friends. Money is not always necessary.

    Fortunately, we in Walton County have one CC who is a good guy (gal). ;-) Commissioner Cindy Meadows always seems to be thinking of doing the right thing, listening to the public, and responding with action when she can. She may be the only exception to your rule. :clap_1:
     
  18. Kurt Lischka

    Kurt Lischka Admin Staff Member

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    SAVE HISTORIC POINT WASHINGTON

    Please come to the first meeting of the Historic Point Washington Association

    Today, 13 November, 3:00pm,
    at Randy Horton?s old general store
    (1920s Bullard Butler Cash Store)
    Gilmore Road across from the Post Office

    Meeting organized and led by James Foley, Randy Harelson, Randy Horton, & Grace Marse

    Point Washington, a bustling lumbertown in the 1880s, is threatened today by Walton County?s Comprehensive Plan which allows development up to 50-feet-tall and 10-units-per-acre even immediately in the street grid of Old Point Washington. The Oaks at Eden is a proposed development of 29 three-or-four-story houses wedged into a small piece of land on County Road 395 one lot away from the Community Cemetery (c.1880) and immediately next door to four existing one-story homes.

    At a County Commissioners meeting last Tuesday, 8 November 2005, the developers (Hendco from Destin) were given two weeks to meet with neighbors and Point Washington residents to find compromise on the clear incompatibility of their development with the existing place.

    A meeting of the Historic Point Washington Association today, Sunday 13 November, will discuss preserving and protecting the historic town from overly-dense and overly-tall development. Committees will also be formed to establish an historic district, collect and edit historical information, and look ahead to a vision of Point Washington 20 years from today.

    Please come if you have an interest in saving the charm and history of this delightful little town.

    Please write to or call your county commissioners to let them know of your concern about the Oaks at Eden, and this sort of incompatible development:
    Walton County Commissioners:
    District One, Scott Brannon, 850-622-3081, brascott@co.walton.fl.us
    District Two, Kenneth Pridgen, 850-834-6328, prikenneth@co.walton.fl.us
    District Three, Larry Jones, 850-892-8474, jonlarry@co.walton.fl.us
    District Four, Ro Cuchens, 850-835-4834, cucro@co.walton.fl.us
    District Five, Cindy Meadows, 850-622-3059, meacindy@co.walton.fl.us

    Please write and call our commissioners as soon as possible this week.

    Thank you for helping to save historic Point Washington.

    Randy Harelson
     
  19. For The Health Of It

    For The Health Of It Beach Fanatic

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    Tonight is the very important BCC meeting on the Oaks at Eden project. We need to fill the room with concerned citizens. This project in it's current form is simply not compatable.

    Please attend the BCC meeting tonight at the South Walton Annex on 331.
     
  20. For The Health Of It

    For The Health Of It Beach Fanatic

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    Walton County Commissioners and Planning Staff November 20, 2005

    Upon review of documents dated February 2005 by and between Walton County and the Oversight Review Committee of the DCA, we, the Historic Point Washington Association have concerns and objections over any further development in the ?hub? of Historic Point Washington. While we are in discussions over the, ?Oaks at Eden? project, we feel our concerns about to be stated appeal to an even bigger picture.

    In the document, on page 31, Historic Preservation Issues are addressed. Under the heading number 7, several points of interests are documented.

    CZCE Objection C-3.3 which states the County shall protect, preserve or sensitively reuse historical and archaeological resources within the County, by regulating development which may impact such resources.

    CZCE Policy C-3.3.2 which states all development shall maintain a minimum 50 foot buffer from known archaeological resources.

    And most importantly CZCE Policy C-3.3.3 which states the County shall coordinate with the Division of Historical Resources to establish historic preserves or parks at sites known historical or archaeological significance.

    When discussing this issue with Walton County Planners and the Planning Department in general, it is a fact that Walton County Staff has yet to act upon this policy.

    It is also determined that according to page 32 of this same document, ?The Walton County Board of County Commissioners, in accordance to Walton County Comprehensive Plan Policy L-1.3.7 and Policy R-1.1.7 has appointed a Committee of Citizens to develop a ?Walton County Cultural Plan,? which addresses all aspects of Policy L-1.3.7 and R-1.1.7. The Committee will make their presentation to the Board in December 2005 with the goal of adopting the plan into the Comprehensive Plan.

    If in fact, a presentation is set to be made by a committee set up by THIS BOARD of County Commissioners in December of this year with aspects of the presentation addressing the very issues of our concerns over this development, then, are we not jumping the gun here? Should we be looking to approve any developments that may be non -compliant to these issues less than a month before the presentation is to be made????

    It has been said that this project is not in a historical area, however according to Walton County?s own Tourist Development Council the term ?HISTORIC? is used to address this area of Point Washington in every piece of information found. In Fact just up the Road from this site, a Walton County TDC sign welcomes travelers of CR 395 to ?Historic Point Washington? the sign informs of the historic areas such as the Post Office, Eden State Gardens, Bay School, the Methodist Church, The Assembly of God Church, and the Cemetery which is even misspelled. The point being, a Walton County Department has identified this area as Historic.

    In information located on the Walton County TDC website, as well as in brochures, the TDC again addresses Historic Point Washington with advertising such as, (taken verbatim from the website)

    Eden State Gardens
    Point Washington
    Tucked away in historic Point Washington on the shore of Tucker Bayou is a beautiful turn?of-the-century mansion surrounded by azaleas, camellias and towering Spanish moss-draped live oaks, some dating back more than 600 years. Guided mansion tours re offered Thursday through Monday. Look for Eden State Gardens, tucked back one mile north of US 98 on County Rd. 395. 850-231-4214



    Wesley Mansion
    The Wesley Mansion, located in the Historic Eden State Gardens, was built in the 1890?s and houses the largest collection of original Louis XVI antiques. The Wesley family owned and operated the Point Washington Lumber Mill during Walton County?s thriving lumber period during the turn-of-the-century. The mansion was dedicated to the state for preservation. 850-231-4214

    Again, these are examples of the fact that this Governmental Board knows of the fact that this area is of Historical importance and if approval of this development is made, it will be in conflict with its own policies and the State of Florida?s Policies for protection.

    Also on page 32 of the before mentioned document, Policy L-1.3.5 states, Significant Historical and Archaeological sites, including but not limited to sites on the Florida Master Site File shall be protected by implementing the following:

    1. After the identification and evaluation of the County?s historic resources following the grant surveys, the County shall determine which structures or archeological sites are deemed significant as judged in part by the criteria used during surveys and adopt by resolution a local historic register and a map of designated sites.

    2. As part of all site plan evaluations, County Staff shall identify whether or not the proposed construction activity and/or final development would disturb the site listed on the Florida Master Site File and/or the County register. If so, the developer shall be notified and shall, in turn, notify the Florida Division of Historical Resources, Bureau of Historic Preservation, compliance review section and shall enter a binding agreement with the County in which the developer agrees to comply with the recommended course of action or mitigation requested by the division prior to the development order being issued.

    In closing, approval of this project will be in direct conflict with the policies set forth by and between the County and the State. We ask that you table this issue until the proper steps have been taken as they have been laid out under this document. Your failure to do so will have significant impacts with a HISTORIC AREA and the STATE OF FLORIDA.

    Sincerely

    The members of the Historic Point Washington Association
     

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