Historic City News has been notified that the St Augustine Planning and Zoning Board will hold a workshop, open to the public, Wednesday, January 15th at 2:00 p.m. in the Alcazar Room at City Hall; a process that Board Member John Valdes said he looks for on “all the things we talk about on the Planning and Zoning Board but don’t have the tools to deal with.”
During last Tuesday’s regular meeting, the PZB received an application from UF Historic St Augustine that became controversial when it was publicized that a grant was available to cover the cost of much-needed public restroom expansion on St George Street — but, as planned, would require the removal of an oak tree.
“To be awarded the state grant, the plan would have to be built as presented,” property manager, Billy Triay, told the Board during last week’s meeting. Given only “approve” or “disapprove” as their choice, the Board rejected the application.
There will be a discussion Wednesday aimed at how the Board should tackle the tough issues – key among them preservation of trees while still allowing development.
Later, Triay explained that he was at the meeting to present the plan and to offer the grant to build it — he was not there to negotiate a “backup plan” with the Board. Triay is the local manager of 34 state-owned historic properties that were once managed by the City of St Augustine.