There is a proposal for a new school to be built in a North Grove residential neighborhood. The school plans to ask the Planning and Zoning Board for an exception on the zoning to allow a pre-school and elementary school to be built at the property located at 1621 S. Bayshore Drive, on the historic Silver Bluff. This is near the emergency entrance to Mercy Hospital. It’s across the street near Bay Heights.
It will sort of have the same affect as building on the Mercy Hospital site. Ramifications will include a large increase in traffic, noise, excess people and opening up the tract for more development — a sort of domino effect in the shady, quiet neighborhood, which is a spectacular entrance into Coconut Grove from the north.
But even worse would be if they used the back entrance, which they probably will. Micanopy would be to this school what Tigertail has become to Ransom — a total traffic mess.
Residents feel that it will impact the area strongly, it is an incompatible use for the area and would overtax the existing infrastructure. The school would have just as dramatic an affect as the proposed Mercy Condos that were planned a few years back. That was thrown out for many reasons including the idea of “spot zoning,” which is the same thing with the proposed school.
Many fear that this construction project could open the door for other development along S. Bayshore Drive in the North Grove, turning it from residential to another Brickell. The same old houses that you see there now, were the norm on Brickell Avenue at one time, too. Now they are high rises and offices.
The proposed school would totally contradict the special character of the existing zoning of NCD-3, Natural Conservation District, which was established to preserve the historic single-family residential character of the Grove and its significant natural flora and fauna.
A lady who is interested in the property, owns a Montessori school on Coral Way now, she feels that her kids need some green pasture — right in the center of a quaint Grove neighborhood!
There is a petition and a meeting at the Zoning Board on Wednesday, June 6, at City Hall (3500 Pan American Drive), at 6:30 pm, to discuss the issue. Neighbors will be out in force to stand up for their quiet, scenic neighborhoods. This will affect everyone, not just the North Grove neighborhoods.
And guys (and gals), there is no Heat game that night! No excuse for you not to come out and defend your neighborhood.
To get more involved, please contact Lisa Treister at Lisa@lisatreister.com.