Letter: Maniglia On Okeechobee Blvd. Stance

I would like to clarify my vision for Okeechobee Blvd., replacing the term “agricultural commercial low impact” with “residential and agricultural enterprises” allowing foot traffic (public access), welcoming agricultural entities open to the public on Okeechobee Blvd., allowing foot traffic where residents and landowners of Loxahatchee Groves can legally sell their home grown and crafted goods at U-picks and community friendly open-air markets.

We need to detour the traffic mess that will eventually come through our town from Westlake and other invasive developers, but welcome those from the surrounding communities who will appreciate buying the organic and locally grown goods from our many farmers contributing to our local economy. There should be two lanes, double striped with turning lanes for safety.

One of the many promises along with horse trails that has never transpired are traffic lights, safe horse/human crossings and/or roundabouts, all deterrents for non-Groves traffic. It seems that certain businesses have been able to operate under an ag residential status, allowing foot traffic and multiple employee traffic, when others trying to do the same thing are told no. Why is it not OK for all on Okeechobee Blvd. to be able to make a living off their land? Our town needs revenue, any and all doing business within our community should be happy to contribute to the upkeep and costs of properly running our town, helping it to thrive and survive, as this will benefit all in the long term.

Let’s keep it rural, celebrate our uniqueness, promote our local businesses, growers of agricultural goods, and build a sense of community that has been long neglected and ignored. We, the residents and landowners, deserve a clean, green and fiscally healthy Loxahatchee Groves. Everyone please get involved. I’m in it to win it.

Phillis Maniglia, Loxahatchee Groves

Editor’s note: Ms. Maniglia is a candidate for Loxahatchee Groves Town Council.