Sunday, August 14, 2016

Pier Park and the Uplands – will they work?

These large-scale projects are being designed by two separate teams that are not yet talking to each other.

St. Petersburg Fl
Opinion by: E. Eugene Webb PhD
Author: In Search of Robin
The Kriseman administration has forced its personal choice for the Pier through the selection process and the re-visioning process as the design moves from concept to actual plans.
Momentarily, the focus has changed to the Pier uplands.
The Goals of the Upland Project:
Develop The Pier Approach, Unify The Pier District, Bring The City To The Water
These large-scale and very expensive projects are being designed by two separate teams. It was a bit startling to hear they are “Not yet talking to each other.”
As these two efforts move forward, the esoteric design concepts need to give way to the more practical consideration of “Will the Pier Approach and the New Pier work together to meet the needs of all the citizens and attract visitors?”
Will the $70 million being spent on these two large public projects be integrated and create something that works for everyone?
For now, the emphasis seems to be on the millennials, the runner, the bikers, the athletic but what about everyone else? The pier project is a long-time investment and there is one thing we can count on - people; their needs, wants and desires change over time.
The millennials will move on, and no one knows what the next generation will want.
The St. Pete Pier and the Pier approach need to be flexible enough to adjust with changing nuances of our society.
People came to the inverted pyramid because it was something to see. The New Pier and the Pier approach are based more on activities than visual impact. Will a meandering garden leading to a pier with a sundrenched event field and an oddly shaped box at the end draw tourists?
Kriseman and his team are betting $70 million of your tax dollars on this one and it will not address or solve any of the pressing issues in St. Pete.
Let's hope they get it right.
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