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This Week's Items to Know:
Season & Traffic -This time of year, as our seasonal residents return and visitors seeking sun and a slice of paradise arrive, we are asked what the City is doing to reduce traffic issues. The Longboat
Grand Tree Relocation During the holiday break, a significant move took place within the city. Icon Residential, which is developing 37 townhomes near Fruitville Rd. and Main Street, relocated a large Grand Oak tree on the property.
A 250 ton crane was used to lift the tree out of the ground and move it approximately 200 feet. Staff Senior Arborist, Mark Miller, was closely involved with the relocation and will continue to work closely with the developer to monitor the tree to ensure its health.
The tree relocation was a condition for site plan approval for the development. Kudos to Chief Planner Lucia Panica, Senior Arborist Mark Miller and the applicant's team for working together to re-design the plans to accommodate numerous existing trees. Relocating a tree of this magnitude is a rare and costly endeavor, and we appreciate Icon Residential going the extra mile to invest in the community -- not just bricks and mortar, but with our environmentally vital tree canopy.
Solar Co-Op A new solar co-op, designed to make purchasing solar panels more affordable for homeowners, was announced this week by Florida Solar United Neighborhoods or FL SUN.
The idea is to assemble a large group of homeowners who are interested in solar panels, then buy the equipment in bulk, and through competitive bidding processes, have one company install the
The initiative is a partnership with a diverse group of Sarasota organizations including the Florida House Institute, League of Women voters Sarasota, Sierra Club, Sarasota Classified Teachers Association and Unitarian Universalist Church of Sarasota. Funding to launch the program is being provided by the Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation and the Gulf Coast Community Foundation.
With an eye on renewable energy sources, the City's Sustainability Manager, Stevie Freeman-Montes was on hand for the announcement. We see this co-op as a valuable opportunity for homeowners to make our community more sustainable, especially since there is so much potential with rooftop solar panels.
To get started, at least 40 homeowners will need to participate in the co-op. Interested? Information sessions will be held over the next several weeks including one at Selby Library on Thurs., January 19 at 5 p.m.
For more details about this exciting community initiative visit www.FLSUN.org/Sarasota
Lift Station 87 - Update Progress continues with the Lift Station 87 project. A second large microtunneling shaft is now being installed with large steel piles being driven into the ground to create the walls. These shafts will be used for the actual microtunneling under the Hudson Bayou.
While conducting an on-site inspection earlier this week, I observed some of the 60-inch diameter pipe casings which have already been delivered in anticipation of the microtunneling. At this writing, the microtunneling is expected to begin the week of Jan. 23rd. This is a very technical and complex construction project and we are eagerly awaiting the completion of the critical microtunnel phase of the LS 87 project.
New Year's Eve - Downtown Celebration A big congratulations to all those involved with the big celebration in downtown Sarasota for the New Year's Eve celebration!
An estimated 30-35,000 revelers descended upon downtown and the Bayfront to enjoy the live music and festivities -- and, of course, to see the pineapple drop.
The Sarasota Police Department did a yeoman's job managing the sizeable crowd with 52 officers -- and no significant issues were reported. Congratulations on ensuring it was a safe evening. And, thanks to our diligent Public Works crews who helped set up and quickly cleaned up after the block party. All this hard work was noted by the City Commission during their regular meeting earlier this week.
Thank you to Ron Soto, lead organizer on behalf of the Sarasota Downtown Merchants Association, and to Marina Jack for the magnificent fireworks show. By all accounts, these were wonderful events and a great way to usher in 2017.
Sat., Jan. 7: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sun., Jan. 8: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
DetailsCelebration of Two Worlds: Sarasota Ballet
Pineapple Ave.: First St. to Main St.
Sun., Jan. 8
3 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Gala Ticketed Event
Van Wezel: Shows on Sale Now!
The following is the current show schedule through 2016. For more information visit www.VanWezel.org
Dirty DancingTues., January 10 - 8 p.m.
Wed., January 11 - 2 p.m. & 8 p.m.
Matthew MorrisonThurs., January 12 - 8 p.m.
Jay LenoFri., January 13 - 8 p.m.
Dick Fox's Golden Boys starring Frankie Avalon, Fabian & Bobby RydellSat., January 14 - 8 p.m.
Michael BoltonSun., January 15 - 7 p.m.
Englebert HumperdinckMon., January 16 - 8 p.m.
Elvis LivesTues., January 17 - 8 p.m.
Zoltan MagaWed., January 18 - 8 p.m.
Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra w/Wynton MarsalisThurs., January 19 - 8 p.m.
Sarasota Orchestra-Pops: The Songs of Elton John and More starrring Michael CavanaughFri., January 20 - 8 p.m.
Sat., January 21 - 2:30 p.m. & 8 p.m.
Adam Trent: The Futurist
Sun., January 22 - 7 p.m.
Ringling Town Hall - Dick CheneyMon., January 23 - 10:30 am & 7:30 pm.
RiverdanceTues., January 24 - 8 p.m.
Wed., January 25 - 2 p.m. & 8 p.m.
Spend the Night with Billy CrystalThurs., January 26 - 8 p.m.
Kenny Rogers - Final World TourFri., January 27 - 8 p.m.
Gladys KnightSat., January 28 - 8 p.m.
Johnny Mathis - The Voice of Romance Tour 2017Sun., January 29 - 7 p.m.
Sarasota Concert Assn - National Symphony of UkraineMon., January 30 - 7:30 p.m.
Boz ScaggsTues., January 31 - 8 p.m.
To purchase tickets over the phone call 941-953-3368 or stop by the Box Office at 777 N.Tamiami Trail.
Congratulations to the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, which marked its 47th anniversary earlier this week. 47 years of offering quality performing arts shows and education programs -- and it all started with "Fiddler on the Roof"! We appreciate all that staff does there and the continued generosity from the Van Wezel Foundation. In honor of the Van Wezel, this week's Sarasota Scene, from resident photographer Norm Schimmel, was taken near the Hall on Sarasota Bay.
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