SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. (WWSB) - A large crowd was on hand Wednesday to push to protect land near the Celery Fields. In the end Sarasota County Commissioners agreed with many of the residents.
Four pieces of land at the intersection of Palmer Boulevard and Apex Road were the hot topic of discussion at Wednesday’s county commission meeting. Many people wanted to keep the 30 acres as open space. There was talk about rezoning the land, which would pave the way for industrial use.
“We don’t want it because there’s going to be any number of problems in doing that," said Robert Wright, a resident who lives near the Celery Fields. "The first one is going to be traffic, the second is going to be the environmental impact on the area, the third one is going to be taking land that should be set aside for recreation.”
Commissioners sided with the majority, approving conservation easements for three of the four parcels of land at the area known as the Quads. The fourth parcel is where a new fire station is going to be built.
“I have no problem with just letting bare ground lay there,” said Nancy Detert, a Sarasota County Commissioner.
The Celery Fields is a place where people enjoy a host of activities from exercise to bird watching. Recently, neighbors were able to keep a recycling plant from being built on the land, after standing up against it and protesting.
Next up with all this, county staff will work with the Conservation Foundation and Audubon Society to conserve the land.