Wilton Manors residents have raised concerns about a new fence that now surrounds the perimeter of the Shoppes of Wilton Manors mall. They say that they’ve seen accidents involving pedestrians rising due to the now limited walking access to the Shoppes.
Steven Jacobson has lived in Wilton Manors for 10 years. His home, on NE 21st Court, is right off of Wilton Drive. He was seduced to purchase the home in 2003 because he was walking distance from the nightlife at the mall.
“One of the reasons I bought directly off Wilton Drive was so that could enjoy the many entertainment businesses, including restaurants, shops, and drinking establishments,” Jacobsen wrote in an email to city and building officials.
“Eventually a tourist will leave Alibi or any of the businesses and walk out the main entrance and get hit by a car, because there is no sidewalk.”
What Jacobsen is referring to is that now the most direct route for pedestrians to reach the Shoppes is to walk up the center road leading to the Shoppes. There are no sidewalks on either side.
Heidi Shafran, community development services director for the city of Wilton Manors, replied to Jacobson saying the fencing was placed because they think that before it was actually more dangerous to walk into the mall. Shafran also noted that pedestrian access points are available by Chic Optique and on NE 7th Avenue.
Shafran told SFGN that the city is taking the concerns of residents seriously, even walking the site on April 9 with developers.
“The building was well within their rights to build the fence,” Shafran said. “We just wanted to show them the concerns of our residents. We’re working to make sure that the Shoppes are safely accessible by everyone.”
SFGN will update this story as more information becomes available. Ryan Dixon