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Posted below with permission and with some reformatting for the Blog Post but no content editing, is a recent e-mail from Pam West regarding the LENS.
Since When do the Taxpayers of this city Succumb to a Limited few that happen to want to use our tax dollars to provide them with a $50Million Dollar exercise ramp???
Use the nearby parks if you want to have a picnic. (open air restaurant)
Use the bike lanes all over the city that have been provided and lined off just for you.
Use the Pinellas Trail that is for that purpose.
Use the Gym
Give ALL the residents and downtown business owners the opportunity to enjoy the benefit of having a #1 Tourist Attraction which brings our city millions of dollars of revenue a year. Last year alone there was $463million tourist dollars spent in Pinellas County . The Lens offers nothing as a tourist attraction.
The Lens is all wrong. It makes no COMMON SENSE! It will end up to be nothing more than a monster bird landing (crapper) and a cesspool for our city.
Food for thought:
We all know this super expensive bike track, that loops around a toilet seat shaped structure, is the biggest waste of tax payers money in the world. Not to mention the dangerous situations that will take place. Who insures this accident waiting to happen and the liability of people getting hurt? Which will happen! Oh, wait I asked that question to a council member and was informed that the city” insures it’s self ”. So that means We the taxpayers will pay for that too!!!
The residents will not use the Lens after the novelty wears off. It will be too hot, too cold, too windy, too rainy, too humid, too dangerous...etc,etc,etc. Another costly mistake.
No shelter or safety from what I see. A shaded area is not shelter or protection from a storm or lightening.
Most of the residents don't even ride bikes, use skateboards or go for extended long walks outdoors. It will end up being a gathering place for teens just like Baywalk with no supervision and a drug dealers paradise...wow, what a ticket for trouble. This makes no sense???? Can you imagine the gathering of teenagers since there will be no supervision? Playground on the water. Or what will be the Cost of 24/7—365days Security to keep peace and control the teenagers/minors?
What will deter the homeless from camping out on their waterfront property? Do I smell another Baywalk in the works if the Lens were to be built?
Have you seen the new images of the Lens? Where is the lane for Handicap and the walking challenged, the emergency vehicles? I guess they’re only considered when it comes to paying the taxes.
What happens when someone decides to turn around and is headed back into the traffic. Or is it going to be one way traffic only? If there is only a few people on the pier that may not be an issue …but for $50 mil it better be crowded. Why waste the taxpayers money on such a nonfunctional structure. If it’s exercise they seek there is the Pinellas trail or join a gym where there is air conditioning.
Has there been any thought given to the Heat factor (temp) with the sun radiating off those aluminum panels?
What about the dirt, salt and pollution in the air when it settles in the grooves on the canopy. Not to mention the bird feces.
That is the poorest excuse of an ice cream stand I have ever seen.
Please, Go back to the guidelines the Pier Advisory Task Force laid out and follow them this time. The Lens is a joke and doesn’t belong on our waterfront.
Everyone that lives in St. Petersburg pays taxes and deserves a Pier that serves as something useful or provides a service of some kind. Not just a possible bike loop for a very limited few.
What about the hundreds of jobs that were eliminated??? And the 28 businesses that were forced to close PREMATURELY? The Pier was still operational so why did it have to be closed before a final decision (vote) is made? What purpose does that accomplish? It really has no bearing on the outcome of the referendum does it? To say it would cost the city more money to keep it open is nothing to what paying Maltzan Group is costing us. At least the pier residents could of support their families a little longer.
STOP THE LENS
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Campaign Disclosures: Contributor to Darden Rice Campaign, Concern Citizens of St. Petersburg