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Planning Commission discusses shared parking and interconnectivity

February 19, 2014
By MCKENZIE CASSIDY ( , Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

The Planning Commission was briefed on the results of a parking survey done by the Sanibel Community Church to determine whether stacked parking was needed.

In 2011 the church received approval to build a new 630-seat sanctuary building with administrative offices, media room, bookstore, cafe, and 259 off-street parking spaces. As a condition of that approval, it had to survey its parking during peak-times to find out whether there were enough spaces.

An engineer from the church surveyed parking on-site and next door at Jerry's Shopping Center between Jan. 20 and March 3 of last year, finding that demand for parking was highest at 11 a.m. But only 225 of the 259 available parking spaces were occupied.

The church had also modified its worship schedule to allow for 45 minutes between services to assist with traffic flow.

Raymond Pavelka, chairman of the church's Facilities Committee, sent a letter with the survey findings to Sanibel Planning Director Jim Jordan.

"Sanibel Community Church's 259 designated on-site parking spaces and the 46 available spaces at Jerry's Shopping Center easily accommodate the Sunday morning parking needs of Sanibel Community Church without undue burden on parking availability at Jerry's," said Pavelka. "Additionally, it appears unlikely that the on-site stacked parking alternative will need to be implemented."

The commission also listened to a presentation on the city's interconnectivity, how bicycles and pedestrians connect to the shared use path system, and intraconnectivity, how bicycles and pedestrians connect to adjacent properties, and members discussed whether they want to keep the system as is, develop guidelines to encourage further development or create an ordinance requiring more connections.

City Manager Judith Zimomra and Jordan gave the presentation to the commission.

Zimomra discussed the Sanibel Plan and how it encouraged the use of alternatives to private motor vehicles, increased safety of the shared use path system, and to maintain the community as walkable and bikable.

The next meeting of the Sanibel Planning Commission will be Tuesday, March 11 in Mackenzie Hall at 800 Dunlop Road.



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