Brytan report planned


Published: Monday, January 7, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 7, 2008 at 12:00 a.m.

A sticky issue will face the Alachua County Commission when it returns to action Tuesday after a holiday break - the rerouting of SW 75th Street through the new Brytan development.

Residents say they will sue unless the county creates an alternative route. Brytan developers say they will sue if the county creates a new route that eliminates parking spaces in Brytan.

County staff is recommending the commission stick with the current path through Brytan's commercial area.

"The developer has complied with the directions of the plans that we approved," County Manager Randall Reid said. "Historically, there is documentation that the road was intended to be cul-de-sacked and ended. Due to our concern about connectivity, it has been realigned."

But residents say the rerouting is slower, difficult to navigate with trailers or large vehicles and was done without meeting legal requirements such as a public hearing.

"Our group has retained Attorney Jeff Braswell to represent us. Mr. Braswell will be filing an injunction in Alachua County Court seeking a declaratory judgment stating that the County did not follow the applicable state and county laws in closing the section of road," several residents wrote in a letter. "We seek to have the section of road replaced to its original configuration."

County Attorney Dave Wagner has said the rerouting was approved as part of a larger public hearing on the Brytan development.

The section of SW 75th Street in question is south of Archer Road, which is a short distance west of 75th Street north of Archer Road. The rerouting was done to join the two sections at a traffic light.

In response to complaints from residents, the commission asked the Public Works Department to study the configuration and determine if an alternative route can be found that would not be too costly.

The department will present its findings Tuesday but is recommending the current route be kept.

Brytan has threatened to sue the county if it changes the route in a way that eliminates parking.

"Removal of any on-street parking will have a dramatic impact on the value and use of abutting and nearby properties," wrote Brytan attorney David Coffey. "On-street parking is essential to the economic vitality of the adjacent and nearby land uses and is crucial to establishing the quality and character of the community of Brytan."

Brytan will be discussed Tuesday after 5 p.m. The commission meeting begins at 9 a.m. Set for discussion in the morning is the Jan. 29 statewide referendum to boost the homestead exemption.

Cindy Swirko can be reached at 352-374-5024 or swirkoc@gvillesun.com.

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