Wildwood PEP committee continues to discuss Slavik Associates properties
By: Sarah Wilson
Wildwood’s Planning/Economic Development/Parks Committee on Feb. 26 held a public hearing to discuss the future land use designations of a 50.6-acre parcel of ground known as the Slavik Associates properties and there approved a motion to recommend the Town Center Advisory Panel’s updated Town Center Plan from 2010, which would zone the property as primarily residential.
The final report on the site will be presented to PEP one more time for final action before it goes to the City Council.
The Slavik property is one of the four properties subject to recommendation for the city’s Town Center Plan update. The property has generated significant discussion throughout the course of the past three years due to its size and the impact that any decision relating to its future land use could have. Currently an undeveloped track that consists of tall grasses and trees, the Slavik Tract is approximately 50 acres in size, is located in the southwest corner of the State Route 100 and State Route 109 intersection.
Frank Gregory, one of the owners of the Slavik property, said “it appears that all of the property in Town Center has either retained a comparable designation or been upgraded, with the exception of two properties, ours and another one.”
“In conclusion, we cannot live with the designation getting proposed,” Gregory said. “We are simply asking for what we have now – nothing more, nothing less. We are not retailers. We are just individuals who own a piece of property. Make no mistake about it. This proposed designation has a significant negative impact on the value of our property.”
Resident Paul Pohlers said the city could use more commercial development.
“It seems to me that if we rule out the possibility that that lane could be used for this type of development, we don’t have any more land left,” Pohlers said. “We have lots of land for residential.”
He said the possibility of zoning the property could be the city’s “last hurrah or last chance at it.”
“We’ve got to get some money from somewhere or we’re going to lose some of our quality of life that we’ve grown quite accustomed to,” Pohlers said.
Councilmember Ron James (Ward 6) agreed. Speaking as a Wildwood resident, he said he would like to leave the property “available in case something comes along.”
“We don’t have to accept anything if it doesn’t, but if we don’t leave it with some commercial opportunity, they’re never going to come in,” James said.
But Dan Topik, one of the residents who spoke against more commercial buildings, said “that (the property) could remain empty for a long period of time.”
“What we need in Wildwood are more rooftops, that is, more residential planned use categories,” Topik said.
The PEP committee also voted to accept the recommendation for the Jones property to be zoned Neighborhood General and Neighborhood Edge. In addition, it approved the recommendation that the Spanos property retain its mixed-use designation.