Home' South Florida Gay News : SFGN 070115 Contents 32 // 7.1 .2015 // SFGN.com //
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City May Require
By Michael d’Oliveira
Developers who want to build new
homes in Wilton Manors may soon have to
offer greener amenities.
Commissioner Tom Green suggested the
change to the building code, which would
require future residential buildings with
a car port or garage to be fitted with an
outlet capable of being used to power a car
charging station. Installing a station would
be optional. The commission, except Mayor
Gary Resnick, voted to place the item on the
agenda of the next commission meeting on
Green said existing home owners would
not have to spend “one penny of money”
to add outlets, only homes that have yet to
be built. Homes being renovated could fall
under the requirement if the majority of the
structure is being demolished. Vice Mayor
Scott Newton said he would only support
the measure if it didn’t force builders to
install charging stations.
Currently, the city’s building code allows
builders to voluntarily choose to install the
“Voluntarily doesn’t carry a lot of weight
with people,” Green said.
But Resnick and Commissioner Julie
Carson, although supportive of a greener
city, said they didn’t want to force anyone
to add an outlet.
Carson said forcing people to add bike
racks in their home might encourage more
bicycling around the city and a reduction of
“Is that something we should require? I
don’t think so . . . but I certainly welcome
the discussion,” she said.
Commissioner Justin Flippen also
suggested city staff look into other possible
green requirements but proposed the city
use incentives to ensure compliance, such
as possibly defraying the permit costs
associated with installing an outlet.
Resnick, who worries that the
requirements could negatively impact
affordable housing and make it more
expensive, rejected Flippen’s incentive
idea. “I don’t want to raise taxes to pay for
building renovations.” WMG
Symposium Aims to Curb
By Michael d’Oliveira
As residents blame city officials for
pedestrian accidents on Wilton Drive and
city officials tell residents and visitors to use
the crosswalks, both sides look for ways to
To improve the safety of Wilton Drive,
which has experienced at least two
pedestrian accidents, city officials have
been communicating with the Florida
Department of Transportation [FDOT].
But at the June 23 commission meeting,
Assistant City Manager Leigh Ann
Henderson said all the city’s proposals,
including painting the speed limit onto the
street, have been rejected by FDOT.
Commissioners said they haven’t given
up yet and will continue to press their case
to state officials.
The panel discussion, organized by
Central Area Neighborhood Association
President Paul Rolli, will include a panel
discussion with an FDOT representative.
It will be held on Wednesday, July 15 at 7
p.m . at Hagen Park, 2020 Wilton Drive.
Commissioner Tom Green cited 595,
A1A and SR 84 as examples of state roads
that already have the speed limit painted
right onto them.
“These things are not unheard of,” said
Green at the June 23 commission meeting.
Two weeks earlier, Green, while expressing
support for trying to make Wilton Drive
safer, pointed to Las Olas Boulevard, a
street where pedestrians are also injured
and killed by motorists. Las Olas, he said,
is much more pedestrian-friendly than
Wilton Drive, with its higher number of
crosswalks and narrower lanes.
“People still get hit. But it helps,” Green
Two options still open to the city include
the relocation of the traffic signal in front
of city hall a few feet south to Northeast
20 Street. Proponents say the move will
encourage more people to cross the street
In response to being accused of not
doing enough to make Wilton Drive safer,
officials have said pedestrians should only
cross at crosswalks. “[Safety is] everyone’s
responsibility,” Newton said.
According to the Wilton Manors Police
Department, there have been two fatalities
on Wilton Drive since 2009. One in 2009
and the other in 2014. Three occurred on
Oakland Park Blvd. – 2009, 2011 and 2013.
Oakland Park Blvd. had the most accidents,
fatal and non-fatal, with 32 since 2009.
Wilton Drive had 18, Andrews Avenue
had 21, Northwest 9 Avenue had 14 and
Northeast 6 Avenue had 12. According to
FDOT, pedestrians are more likely to get hit
by a vehicle if they don’t use an intersection
than if they do.
Unable to get any changes to the roadway
yet, the police department has begun
issuing jaywalking tickets to pedestrians
who don’t use crosswalks.
“It’s a start,” said Mayor Gary Resnick at
the June 9 commission meeting. Green said
he supports handing out tickets but “I don’t
want a major portion of our police force
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