Inlet Village saved from eminent domain: TCPalm, Jupiter FL, 11/12/06


With a nation and a community awash in the Democratic victory, the passage of all the amendments to Florida's Constitution is going somewhat unnoticed.

Amendment 8 in particular struck a chord with residents in the Jupiter area because of the possibility — no matter how slim — that the area around Inlet Village could be taken by eminent domain because it had received a "blighted" designation ... in order to create the town's Community Redevelopment Agency.

Anna Current, an Inlet Village resident and vocal opponent of eminent domain, said Thursday, "The passage of Amendment 8 is like a nail in the coffin. Now no one will be able to take property from owners and put it into private hands."

Although the threat of eminent domain in Inlet Village has been eliminated, there are still significant challenges in this area, not the least of which is maintaining the character of Inlet Village and its role in the town's grand Riverwalk plan.

The Town Council should keep in mind that what a governmental agency designated as "blighted" most residents consider to be a charming and unique area that must have its character preserved.

Councilor Todd Wodraska said after Tuesday's meeting that experts at a recent brainstorming session discussing Inlet Village told him to not let parking lead the plans for Inlet Village, but rather to focus on maintaining and emphasizing its character.

The council and the staff must keep that in mind as it continues to wrestle with the look, feel and purpose of Inlet Village.

Like so many other things, once that unique flavor is gone, it can't be replaced by a Disneyesque version of a "fishing village," no matter how well-intentioned.

TCPalm, Jupiter FL: http://www.tcpalm.com