Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Madeira Beach manager pitches plans to encourage development

MADEIRA BEACH — Less than three months into his new job, City Manager Shane Crawford is intent on making it clear the city is open for redevelopment.

He outlined various steps to achieve that goal at a recent City Commission workshop and stressed that the pending changes relating to development are policy decisions only the commission can approve.

As one of the first steps, Crawford is asking the commission to consider canceling the city's building services contract with Treasure Island, which now handles all permits and inspections for Madeira Beach — and collects all the fees.

"If we are going to be prodevelopment, I suggest we bring the permitting function back home," he told the commission. "Treasure Island has been doing a fine job, but we need to be in charge of our own destiny."

Crawford said at least four development projects totaling at least $4 million are about to be submitted for permitting, and will generate upward of $300,000 in permit fees.

On Tuesday, he said another option would involve Treasure Island renegotiating the contract to share permitting-related revenue with Madeira Beach.

Crawford is in the process of hiring a new city planner who could head a re-established community development department that could handle planning, permitting, building inspection and code enforcement.

The city used to have such a position, but after former Community Development Director Paula Cohen resigned in 2010 to take a job in Treasure Island, the post has remained vacant.

Crawford also wants the commission to consider passing four development-related ordinances the Planning Commission approved about a year ago.

One would create a new land use category, resort facility high, to attract hotels back into the city by allowing the commission to consider approving more rooms per acre than currently allowed.

Other changes relate to implementing planned developments and combining development density of contiguous properties.

The city's last major hotel, the 149-room Holiday Inn on Gulf Boulevard, shut its doors in 2004.

Although the city still has a number of mom-and-pop hotels, they are disappearing, too.

Over the past decade, the city has lost more than 200 tourist rooms. All were replaced by condominiums.

In 2005, the city hoped redevelopment of a 2.2-acre site on the mainland side of the Madeira Beach bridge would include a flagship hotel, but those plans never materialized and condominiums were built instead.

Now, a developer wants to build a Courtyard Marriott on American Legion Drive in nearly the same spot on the northeast mainland side of the Tom Stuart Causeway. The planned Marriott project requires some of the density provisions included in the pending four ordinances, according to Crawford.

In addition, a new Walgreens, a Wells Fargo bank and a new Gulf-front condominium are about to request building permits, he said.

Other developers have approached the city to explore how their projects would be viewed by officials and residents.

"This is still all pie in the sky, but developers are talking to us. Things are picking up and the pendulum is swinging the other way. The next few years are going to be exciting," Crawford said.

Further discussions about redevelopment policy are planned at another commission workshop on April 24.

Madeira Beach manager pitches plans to encourage development 04/10/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 10, 2012 5:06pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Lightning takes defenseman Cal Foote with top pick in draft

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — Former Avalanche defenseman Adam Foote said his son Cal lived in the locker room.

    Cal Foote, second from left, is welcomed to the Lightning by GM Steve Yzerman, far left.
  2. It's Rays' turn to pound Orioles pitching (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG - Ah, the fantastic four.

    The Rays smashed the reeling Orioles 15-5 on Friday, scoring a season-high in runs, to climb four games above .500 for the first time since July 1, 2015.

    Rays third baseman Evan Longoria scores on a triple by Logan Morrison during the first inning against the Orioles.
  3. Lightning picks defenseman Cal Foote


    Cal Foote is the son of former Avs defenseman Adam Foote.
  4. Kids today: They don't work summer jobs the way they used to


    WASHINGTON — It was at Oregon's Timberline Lodge, later known as a setting in the horror movie The Shining, where Patrick Doyle earned his first real paycheck.

    Teens Ben Testa, from left, Hannah Waring and Abby McDonough, and Wegmeyer Farms owner Tyler Wegmeyer walk the strawberry rows at the Hamilton, Va., farm in late May.
  5. Jeb Bush back in the hunt for the Marlins, now opposing Derek Jeter


    Associated Press:

    Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has switched sides in pursuit of the Miami Marlins, and he’s trying to beat out former teammate Derek Jeter.