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Reader Spotlight: "Safety Harbor Has Done Well to Develop Slowly"

Reader Fritz Kirsch had this to say in response to the news that Mayor Ayoub wants to sell the Messenger property.

The story we ran about Mayor Ayoub suggesting the city sell the Messenger property, a 10-acre parcel located behind Harborside Christian Church, drew a variety of responses.

Many readers said the city should hold on to the land and leave it as green space, others said they would like to see something developed on the spot that had originally been planned to hold sports fields.

Reader Fritz Kirsch made this comment as to how the city should handle this issue:

Safety Harbor has done well to develop slowly. Now it's called charm. Before considering selling off what is considered unnecessary property, considerable study and calculation is necessary. Quick money fixes seldom lead to intelligent decisions. Later park development may be the very thing to improve nearby property values.

What do you think, Harborites? Should the city hold on to the property and try to develop it or sell it off and use the money for other parkland? Let us know in the comments below.

Harborite January 26, 2013 at 11:54 AM
Safety Harbor should not lose open green spaces in order to pay for improvements to the Waterfront Park. Open spaces like the 10-acre Messenger property provide a place for nature, trees, animals, and birds to live within our City. It is also necessary to have these open spaces living in our urban environment in Pinellas County, which is Florida's most densely populated county. Studies have shown that parts of cities without cooling shade from trees create "heat islands," with temperatures as much as 12 degrees higher than surrounding areas. Having trees in cities helps to moderate the heat island effect that is caused by additional roads, paved areas, and new buildings. Open land with nature and beautiful oak trees also make Safety Harbor a more attractive place to live. It would be foolish for Safety Harbor to sell this land now, which may be eventually developed another large subdivision. This open green space is a valuable asset to have for today and into the future, and it greatly improves the quality of life for all of us living in Safety Harbor.
pat riggen January 27, 2013 at 02:51 AM
I totally agree with the above. Green spaces are so important in our changing climate world. Safety Harbor is a special place and green spaces should be preserved, not developed. There are over 17,000 people in the small area of SH. Preserve the available land!
Jimmy p January 27, 2013 at 04:35 PM
Hi! I just signed the petition "The City of Safety Harbor Commission: Vote No to Richman Group of Florida's proposed Development Agreement." on Change.org. It's important. Will you sign it too? Here's the link: http://www.change.org/petitions/the-city-of-safety-harbor-commission-vote-no-to-richman-group-of-florida-s-proposed-development-agreement-2 Thanks!

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