Tuesday, October 15, 2013
After two displays of public objection to the approved Fripp Lane extension, Mayor Bill Collins told The Journal Scene on Tuesday the Town Council “is no longer going to pursue opening Fripp Lane.”
“[The residents] said please don’t open the street, so I decided to instruct staff to put it on the shelf,” he said.
Mayor Collins said to make it official the council will have to vote on a motion to rescind the original motion at the Town Finance Committee’s November meeting.
The extension would have connected the Weatherstone and Palmetto Park subdivisions.
Residents of Weatherstone have long disapproved of the lane extension and expressed their contempt twice this year: once at the August council meeting when the proposal was approved in a 5-1 vote, and again last week at the October council meeting.
The lane extension was originally proposed several years ago to offer residents a second emergency exit from the community, but after similar displays of disfavor council voted to table the extension.
Protesters from Weatherstone filled the council chambers at the Oct. 9 meeting. Of the 18 speakers during the public comment portion of the meeting, 14 spoke about the extension.
The group also presented the council with a 450-signature petition supporting their position at the meeting.
Community safety was clearly the concern of residents as they spoke, mentioning speeding, increased traffic, dangerous conditions for children to play and the high rate of crime in Palmetto Park as concerns.
Councilman Terry Jenkins, who represents Weatherstone and the rest of District 2 on council, said the change of heart is “the way you would like to see government work.”
“What we saw here is politics and community involvement working the way it’s supposed to,” he said. “We had good reasons why we wanted to make that action, but we got a loud outcry from people who wanted to get involved, and we listened.