Letter to the Editor: When is it enough?

When do the builders and developers have enough money so that they will stop destroying what used to be a great place to live, Anna Maria Island?

When will there be enough monster homes built by overzealous investors right next to smaller homes where people raised their families and came to vacation for generations? When will there be enough residents forced to move because of the noise of traffic or the unending disturbance of two, three or four families suddenly living next door, but moving in and out every week? The once-family homes that were razed and replaced with buildings that accommodate three, four and five families are mini-hotels, not homes.

When will there be enough gold lining the pockets of builders, investors and developers who are turning an unpolished gem into Clearwater, St. Pete or Fort Lauderdale? We need to wake up and see the destruction of the lifestyle we all thought we had on Anna Maria Island.

Sean Murphy is right – the issue is not parking; the issue is traffic! Why not have an engineering company perform a traffic impact analysis?

Who is going to pay for the proposed parking garages on the island? Will visitors then have to pay to park when visiting our free beaches?

Beachgoers could park in the two virtually empty parking deck garages in downtown Bradenton. The county can lease, on a seasonal basis, interstate/Greyhound-type buses that have plenty of storage for beachgoers’ chairs, etc. They can run every 20 minutes, significantly reducing congestion. This would eliminate idling cars either stuck in traffic or moving so slowly due to traffic that air pollution is increased, valuable fuel resources are wasted, and frustration and anger and angst are created – let us not forget people who LIVE on the island.

Residents cannot go out to shop, go out to eat, or leave the Island to go to church unless they spend hours in traffic for what used to be a 10-minute drive. Have you ever walked on the Island’s sidewalks in season while cars spew carbon monoxide in your face?

The fellow Holmes Beach resident who wrote, “We only have so much space; apply the math…” was so right.

It is painfully clear that parking isn’t the real issue – the true motive behind this is development and profit.

Stop the madness!

Last, but not least, the county commissioners and the FDOT should build a bridge to Longboat Key which would alleviate the Gulf Drive/Cortez traffic nightmare.


Paul Reed Steberger

Holmes Beach