I am writing to applaud the Loxahatchee Groves Town Council for voting to “Reject Minto’s Help in Designing Okeechobee Blvd.” for a four-lane expansion (Town-Crier, Dec. 19).
Loxahatchee Groves is a 100-year-old rural equestrian/farming/nursery community that is approximately three miles wide in its north/south width, with Okeechobee Blvd. bisecting the center of the town’s six-mile length. The main reason for any Okeechobee four-lane expansion is to strictly get traffic to and from the Minto West, GL Homes and the Carol Iota properties. Minto will have two million square feet of commercial. This is twice the size of the Mall at Wellington Green. Just imagine the number of trucks that will be needed daily to bring supplies and services to and from these businesses, let alone all the new residential traffic.
Okeechobee Blvd. from I-95 to Royal Palm Beach Blvd. is eight lanes. If you were to allow the four-laning of Okeechobee Blvd. in Loxahatchee Groves, this traffic will continue through Loxahatchee Groves to Seminole Pratt Whitney Road.
The town should always refuse any potential four-laning of Okeechobee Blvd. via the courts. There is a very simple solution to all of Minto’s traffic, which Loxahatchee Groves can use as a defense in court. Minto West needs to keep “all” of its traffic within the Minto property. All of this new traffic should use the new Minto roads to and from Minto. This will also save ITID residents, especially those on 60th Street North, Persimmon and Orange Grove from four-laning. It will also save Royal Palm Beach Blvd. from six-laning. This solution will not cost Minto any more money, and it will make 95 percent of the area residents happy that Minto traffic will be handled internally, with a little county help.
I will reach out to John Carter, vice president of Minto, to present my design to him on how Minto can achieve this. I prefer to give Mr. Carter the opportunity before I submit my design proposals to the town councils and supervisors and attorney teams for legal defense. My solution/design will keep a good portion of Seminole Pratt Whitney Rd. traffic from 60th Street North/M Canal, to Sycamore, internal of the Minto property with traffic being free flowing.
Please note that the four-laning of Okeechobee Blvd. will not bring any needed value or benefit to Loxahatchee Groves. It will only hugely benefit and value Minto with all of their massive trucking and residential traffic. It will only hugely “devastate forever” the center and heart of a beautiful, quaint 100-year-old town, Loxahatchee Groves!
The two Loxahatchee Groves council members need to be commended for abstaining on the vote referenced above due to “conflict of interest.” I only wish that the ITID supervisor, whom I and many others feel has a serious “conflict of interest,” should not have and should not vote on issues that benefited or benefit Minto West.
Ed Zakrzewski, The Acreage