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        St. Petersburg Times
         published November 12, 1999
         
        Rural areas work on goals for growth:
        Lutz and Keystone/Odessa want to manage growth and preserve their rural 
        character.
        By JACKIE RIPLEY

        TAMPA -- What's the best thing that might come out of the Lutz and 
        Odessa/Keystone community plans?  An end of frustration felt by 
        residents, developers and county officials.
        That's the opinion of Steve Morris, president of the Keystone Civic 
        Association and one of the civic leaders who helped craft those plans.
        Morris said the community plans will remove those frustrations because 
        they outline "what the community wants" as well as being "precise plans 
        to direct development."
        At a workshop before the Hillsborough County Commission on Wednesday, 
        members of the Planning Commission and civic leaders put forth their 
        best effort to bring commissioners up to speed on the progress of the 
        community-based plans.
        They are the result of a nearly two-year process by the Hillsborough 
        Planning Commission, involving countless meetings between residents and 
        planners, to craft blueprints that would preserve the rural nature of 
        the areas.
        "This is not a no-growth plan," said Lorraine Duffy, planning manager of 
        the Planning Commission.  Instead, it is a plan that allows "growth that 
        is compatible with the area."
        But what is compatible with Lutz may not necessarily be compatible with 
        Keystone/Odessa, even though both communities want to preserve their 
        rural character.
        In Lutz, the focus is on openness, heritage and individuality, a place 
        where cookie-cutter subdivisions don't fit in.
        Morris said the community plans will remove those frustrations because 
        they outline "what the community wants" as well as being "precise plans 
        to direct development."
        That's not to say they have a place in Keystone/Odessa, where the theme 
        is rural.
        "We want the hay around and the cows around," said Odessa resident 
        Jeanette Lindstrom.
        Hillsborough County Commissioner Jim Norman wanted to know how to bridge 
        the gap between people who live in these areas for peace and tranquility 
        and those who also want urban services such as sidewalks and fire 
        hydrants.
        "If you want rural development you're going to have to accept rural 
        standards," said Duffy, admitting it's a concept that will have to be 
        taught.
        County Commissioner Jan Platt wondered if the plans would be strong 
        enough to protect the two communities from growth that threatens not 
        only from the south but also from Pasco County to the north in "a wave 
        that will not just inundate them in the end."
        And County Commissioner Ben Wacksman said the plans must be good because 
        "no one is 100 percent happy with them."
        Joseph Narkiewicz, executive director of the Builders Association of 
        Greater Tampa and a member of the advisory committee to the Planning 
        Commission, said members agreed on where they want to end up but not how 
        to get there.
        The committee's findings will be translated into new county land-use 
        laws by next spring with hopes for adoption in May or June, Duffy said.

 

 

 

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