OCTOBER 24, 2011


THE SPECIAL MEETING OF THE TOWN CENTER REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY was called to order by Chairman Allen Green at 5:28 P.M.


Pledge of Allegiance


Invocation – Silent


ROLL CALL:             Present:                     Ben Talluto

Bob Ford

                                                                        Don Burnette

                                                                        Bob Pohlmann

Dennis Kennedy (Arrived at 6:33p.m.)

                                                                        Suzette Blahnik

                                                                        Chairman Allen Green


Also Present:            Kenneth W. Parker, City Manager                                                                                                            Margaret Roberts, City Attorney

Shannon Lewis, Assistant City Manager

                                                                        Carole Thomas, Recording Secretary



4.            Discussion of policy issues relating to Riverwalk


Mr. Parker gave an overview of the policy issues related to Riverwalk. He discussed Item 6 regarding policy issues. Ms. Lewis handed out a copy of the revised memorandum related to Item 6. Mr. Parker stated he thought they had a reasonable approach to get a comprehensive plan completed to get needed changes. He said a plan has not yet been determined and it may not be a comprehensive plan, but the document does try to anticipate if the comprehensive plan changes and when it can go to Planning Commission and City Council. He said the same as it relates to zoning, if there are changes required how it will track, and that the CRA plan has to track concurrently with all of it. Mr. Parker said the comprehensive plan and zoning always track behind the plan. Mr. Parker discussed a time schedule for revisions of the plan. He stated in Volusia, even though they have streamlined at the state level for comprehensive plan, the City is still subject to county charges through Growth Management Commission, which has its own timer. Mr. Parker asked if there are any questions relating to the document and the timeline. The board has no comments at this time.


Mr. Parker mentioned 6A. He said he is not proposing development cannot occur when making changes, unless direction is specifically opposed to something already in place. Mr. Parker used the marina as an example. He said unless directed the marina cannot move forward, the private sector can reactivate the marina.  


Mr. Parker mentioned the section between Herbert and Dunlawton under current zoning is mixed use. He stated this is a Planned Community Development area and the board needs to think about what they want in this section. He stated mixed use includes residential, commercial and retail.

Chairman Green stated early in this process you could have a business with residential above the business.

Member Talluto mentioned he was in favor of mixed use; his only concern is the parking issue.

Member Ford is in favor of mixed use. He mentioned his concern with high density resulting in parking dilemmas. He said he would like to go back to the concept of a village.

Member Burnette stated mixed use brings variety and flexibility which is needed.

Member Pohlmann requested a definite definition of what this section will be called. Mr. Parker stated the section from Dunlawton Avenue to Herbert Street is referred to the mixed use area in the bubble diagram. Member Pohlmann stated he supports mixed use and is not concerned with high density. He said residential should be allowed but not mandatory, and he does not think the idea of apartments above businesses will sell well.

Member Blahnik stated she is in favor of mixed use but agreed that parking is an issue. She said she agrees that she is not sure how well residential fits in.

Chairman Green mentioned what happened to downtown Daytona when the Volusia Mall opened. He stated it was not thought out well and it killed business. He stated he supports mixed use.

Member Ford mentioned the senior population and thinks Riverwalk would be a good way to target this population. He stated a close destination needs to be established that would draw in people.

Member Burnette mentioned residential use should only be complimentary to what the community will support. He stated this area has the highest visibility.

Member Ford asked about upscale senior housing. Chairman Green stated he is not sure this is the right area for this.

Member Talluto mentioned putting a 2 or 3 story hotel on the corner of Dunlawton Avenue and U.S. 1, facing the river with the parking in the back. Chairman Green stated they are trying to establish the policy for zoning not what is going in at this time.

All members stated they are in favor of mixed use. Mr. Parker confirmed a hotel would be included in mixed use.


Mr. Parker mentioned a previous discussion regarding Policy Discussion B about the Sweetwater Property and noted a correction to page 7. The County has confirmed the City cannot use previously acquired properties as local match. Mr. Parker made a notation about the City of Daytona Beach trying to buy items next to the pier. Mr. Parker said we could go forward with an ECHO grant application, in an attempt to limit out of pocket cash and that other options exist. He said if you go back to the zoning of the various properties there are certain things that are allowed, for example, in the city owned or CRA owned property some carry a commercial use or residential use that have a different value than a property that is in a conservation park. Mr. Parker asked the board to think about those items. He stated the next step is to discuss how the property will be appraised. He said the appraisal from our perspective is established by what is zoned, what its comp plan is and what the CRA determine it is. Mr. Parker stated ECHO matches are supposed to be 50% depending on who buys it. If the county buys it as county land it is 100%, if the city is the acquisition person it is 50%. Member Burnette mentioned the ECHO application process. Mr. Parker stated that you submit the application and it goes through ranking process then the dollars are allocated. Member Burnette mentioned that we are a donor city. Mr. Parker stated municipalities have received the smallest allocations out of the dollars. He also said it is widely distributed among cities and is well balanced. Member Burnette stated his concerns of others jumping in line and Port Orange not receiving any monies.


Member Blahnick stated they should have some control of the point due to the City not owning it.

Member Pohlmann stated he agrees with controlling the riverfront property but would like to also hear about the potential for giving up a section, even if adjusts the plan. He is flexible to what has been proposed but agreed the point does need to be controlled.

Member Burnette stated a long term lease agreement is needed but his preference would be for the City to own or lease back to generate funds.

Member Ford is in favor of providing the people a park, which would be the generator for all other development. He stated he is not willing to compromise on having a park of some kind and he feels the City should control it. He said he wants a tight control without restaurants being the focal point. Member Ford also stated the need to discuss a property swap. Chairman Green stated this is only part of the Riverfront. Document shows controlling only part of Riverwalk. Original Riverwalk is walking from one end to the other. Member Ford stated that is what he wants.  

Member Talluto mentioned the riverfront property and that it is the focal point and the public should have it. He stated he does not want to give up other riverfront in order to have the point. Chairman Green said getting back to the question, do you want to own all of the riverfront or do you want to lease it. In theory you want to control the entire area. Halifax and building were shown by Mr. Parker. Mr. Parker stated there are different levels of interactions.

Mr. Parker mentioned bottom of Page 7, there is a comment that talks about what Member Ford is referring to. Chairman Green asked about the Burt Harris deal. Mr. Parker stated it is not in Burt Harris it is in the CRA statute.


Member Ford stated he would like to get as much land as possible into private hands for development. Wants to know what can be done in a land swap to know what can be done in the future. Mr. Parker stated the private owner in the middle track indicated they are willing to have that type of proposal. It is a clean proposal. Member Ford stated we need to reduce the checkerboard of owned properties. Mr. Parker agreed. Chairman Green stated the policy issue, do you want to control the riverfront. All members agreed. Mr. Parker asked the board if they want the RFP to be structured around a land swap or purchase.  All members agreed that a land swap was best.  All members agreed yes. Mr. Parker said do you then want to develop an RFP that complies with state statute. All members agreed yes.


Mr. Parker said from an appraisal standpoint, you have to go through MAI appraisal. There are some in Volusia County that meet the criteria. Chairman Green asked if all the property should be appraised, including those that we do not own. Mr. Parker stated the value of the land in the RFT is only our land. When asked, Ms. Roberts stated appraisals are broken down into a square footage. Mr. Parker stated in general terms, public sector moving to private and private moving to public, it is roughly the same number of acres. Chairman Green stated what is currently there can be structured around.


Mr. Parker discussed the surface parking which would be in the private sector modeling.  He said there was also a discussion regarding the Thompson property behind The Arthaus and how it can be incorporated into the plan. Chairman Green noted Herbert Street would be a main intersection. Member Blahnick stated alternative parking is needed. Member Pohlmann and Member Burnette stated more parking is always needed. Member Ford is in favor of alternative parking.  Member Burnette mentioned this may be used for employee parking.


Mr. Parker stated in the current zoning requirements, there is a minimum acreage requirement. He stated the concept at the time was for it to be developed as a Master Development Plan.  Mr. Parker asked the board if they want to retain minimum acreage. Chairman Green stated the minimum acreage does not bother him. Mr. Parker noted Riverwalk is its own zoning district called Planned Community Development.  

Member Blahnick stated there does not need to be a minimum acreage. Member Pohlmann stated he wanted more information before making a decision but for now he says no. Member Burnette stated he also needed more information. Member Ford stated there obviously has to be a reasonable minimum requirement but he was not sure of what might work.  Member Talluto said he does not like to see minimum acreage. He stated if existing shops do not want to participate, there should be a caveat that states if and when it is sold the new owner has to conform to the surrounding property. Ms. Roberts stated zoning can be applied as it is now, or as you determine to amend it, absent objection from the property owner, but affecting the private property rights beyond zoning authority there will be limitations. Mr. Parker stated he would bring back some options. Member Kennedy stated we need to look at options but 2 acres was too large.


Mr. Parker mentioned a minimum height requirement of 2 stories under the current plan. There is also a maximum. All members voted NO to a 2 story minimum. 


For Item G, Mr. Parker mentioned putting the electric utility lines underground costs $1 to 1.3 million per mile. This area will be along Dunlawton Ave and Ridgewood Ave.  The lines serve more than Riverwalk. Member Ford is in favor but wants to be able to make the decision later. He said he would not recommend making it mandatory at this point. All Members agreed on non-mandatory underground utilities if feasible. 


Mr. Parker did not discuss Item H.


Mr. Parker discussed Item I stating the cost is $200,000 to $300,000 for the Water and Sewer looping. He said it is adequate to meet initial needs, and he wants to know what else will be going on the property. He stated the lift station on Halifax Drive has been upgraded.  He stated additional utility work would need to be done due to this being the older section of the City. Mr. Parker stated it is going to benefit more than this section. When asked about impact fees, Mr. Parker stated there are impact fee credits that will be applied before new impact fees are charged. He stated the credits are available from now on, not just for this project. Cost participation was mentioned.


Mr. Parker stated Item J needs more time to get more information and look into requirements. When looking into more conventional codes it takes more flexibility. Member Ford is not opposed to flexible approach, but he would like to know what he’s being flexible about first. Mr. Parker stated there are pre-existing code standards. He said he would like to come back and discuss later.


Mr. Parker discussed the current architectural style which is Florida Vernacular. Chairman Green stated he is in favor of a toned down Florida Vernacular. Members agreed. Member Talluto stated he would rather go to stucco, preferably Mediterranean style. 


Mr. Parker mentioned the master plan for Storm water, he stated in 1998 in order for Riverwalk to be successful, it had to be Storm water master planned.  As a general rule, about 15% of acreage is allocated for storm water.  He said about 6 acres of land would be needed for Riverwalk for Storm water.  Chairman Green mentioned underground storage could be used for irrigation and to get off site credits.  Member Ford stated this effort needs to be combined with a master plan.  Mr. Parker stated this would be a challenge. SJRWMD may allow compensating storage.  Mr. Parker stated he would be bringing a few options for this project.


Chairman Green asked if we had used all the property bought from Thomson’s. Mr. Parker stated that property was being held for this project until the rules changed. He stated they are going to go talk to them about the rules.


Mr. Parker stated he needs to bring back more information regarding Item M.


Mr. Parker stated it is too early to discuss zoning for Item N.

Mr. Parker stated it is too early to talk about comp plan.


Mr. Parker said Item S has been addressed. He said the Volusia County Appraiser's methodology is different than an MAI appraisal.  It was stated that his appraisal is generally lower than the highest and best. Mr. Parker said it would give an idea, but agreed that he uses a different technique.


Mr. Parker gave an overview of Item T. TIF being used for the cost of infrastructure was brought up. Mr. Parker stated this is where reimbursement is the infrastructure side. He stated this was established years ago and the model may not work today. He said the fees are paid up front, then the cost of the infrastructure. All members agreed.


Mr. Parker stated the impact fees collected from the development of Riverwalk will be dedicated to the infrastructure projects within the area and not be placed in the general pool. All members agreed.  Mr. Parker also stated grant issues are being addressed.  He said a portion of the ECHO grant could be used for “water based land acquisitions,” and that it changed how the grant will be allocated in the future.


Mr. Parker stated for Item ECHO, the formula excludes the first $1 million for trails. He said Riverwalk is not included in the County's trail system. Mr. Parker and members discussed trails that are in the County’s system.


Mr. Parker asked the board to think about the park and TIF funds that begin to put together how a portion of the local match could be achieved over a period of years and discusses how the 2nd portion of the gas tax for new construction could be used. 


5.            Public Comments


Mr. LaCour discussed the ECHO Match with the RFP. He recommended a land purchase if ECHO is going to buy portions of the land, he would buy some of the land.


Mr. LaCour stated parking is going to drive the project.  If the City and CRA commits to both areas of parking, he felt the parking should be open to the public. Mr. LaCour stated he has over $3 million invested in site plans for Riverwalk. He recommends not changing existing component for the storm water plan.  Mr. LaCour mentioned the letter he sent to the Board.  He felt the next step is a site plan.  He wants to get all of the comments before he has one prepared. 


6.            CRA Member Comments


Member Talluto mentioned item no. 6 on Mr. LaCour’s letter.  He asked about riparian rights.  Mr. LaCour wants to open 50 slips immediately and subsequently 150 in the future. He stated it would go in the marina and where it is decided they can go. Member Talluto questioned Mr. LaCour on the number of docks and the riparian rights. Mr. LaCour verified that the riparian rights are for the marina development. He stated he wants to develop a marina and feels it is part of what will make Riverwalk work. Member Talluto agreed a marina is a good idea. Mr. LaCour and Member Talluto discussed viable options for plans and the possibility of a hotel.


Member Blahnick would like to see something happen for the future.  She has lived here for 20 years and envisions this to be a place for people to go.


Member Kennedy said his goal is to see something there in his lifetime.  He said we need to start somewhere. He wants to see continued effort.


Member Pohlman stated he would like to get something going and asked Mr. Wayne Clark to come up with some ideas and to come up with a realistic workable solution.


Member Burnette stated this planning will be done is small steps.


Member Fords stated his concerns are fiscal. He would like more discussion with regard to costs. 


Member Talluto stated he felt tax money needs to be used for the east side of the City from Nova Road going east to avoid the area being blighted. 


Chairman Green stated TIF is a methodology used for investment. He stated you have to make a decision to invest and to know what the return on the investment is. He said he would like to look at the tax base. He stated they are open-minded.


Mr. Parker stated he would be getting back with regard to additional meetings.








                                                                                    Chairman Allen Green