City officials are moving forward with the development of the lot they purchased last year.
The lot, located at Northeast 23 Drive and Northeast 11 Avenue, was bought for about $447,000. At the time, some residents criticized the purchase as too being too high, and for other reasons.
“We can’t keep taking property off the tax rolls,” said Sal Torre, president of the Westside Association of Wilton Manors, in October. “It’s incumbent upon us as policy makers to act. This land is available. We have to act,” said Commissioner Justin Flippen at the same meeting.
Parking has been a complaint of residents and business owners for at least a decade and the purchase of the lot, and another at Northeast 26 Street and Northeast 8 Terrace, is one of the ways the commission has tried to provide more parking.
When finished, the new parking lot will have 23 spaces. To create more space, city staff members requested landscaping and set-back variances for the property from the Planning and Zoning Board. All but one, to build a fence around the property instead of a concrete wall, were approved.
It is unknown at this time when the lot will be paved and open to the public, but Bob Mays, the city’s finance director, said the estimate cost to pave the parking lot is between $225,000 and $230,000. Mays said the concrete wall increased the cost of the project from the previous $210,000 estimate.
Mays said the city is creating a bid to send out to construction companies. When the bids are sent back to the city, the commission will have to decide which company to hire.