The Destin City Council fielded multiple issues Monday evening.
Here is a rundown of some of the ordinances passed and discussed:
Text amendment to allow boat sales in Town Center CRA
At its second reading, Destin City Council on Monday night voted 4-3 in favor of amending the Town Center Mixed Used zoning district to allow “other motor vehicle dealers” to operate within the Town Center CRA.
Orr Automotive, located at 226 Main Street, put in a request to the city to allow them to sell marine vessels in addition to cars.
Councilwoman Prebble Ramswell said she was against the measure because the dealership already operates on a conditional use basis.
“I go back to what it was we were looking to do with the comp plan and how strictly we were adhering to it and the vision for the future,” she said. “There are vacancies there and we do want to see some changes, but extending conditional uses, I don’t know if that’s the way to do it.”
Councilman Chatham Morgan, however, argued that there was virtually no point in stopping the dealer from selling boats.
“I don’t see the difference between selling a car and selling a boat. No offense to your company, I wish they weren’t there at all, but they are,” Morgan told Bob McGill, an attorney representing Orr Automotive. “It’s something we have to live with. … I don’t see a logical reason to deny it.”
Warrant analysis at Henderson Beach Boulevard and Commons Drive
The council also discussed the traffic situation at the corner of Commons Drive and Henderson Beach Boulevard. VenueEmeraldCoast, the apartment complex located at that intersection, was bound by their development order to complete a traffic warrant analysis one year after their certificate of occupancy was issued, but has failed to do so.
City of Destin Land Use Attorney Scott Shirley sent a strongly worded letter stating the Venue’s responsibility to conduct the analysis on Sept. 8, but has not heard back from apartment representatives.
Another apartment complex development is being affected by the Venue’s lack of action, according to the city, and the council discussed working with Okaloosa County to resolve the issue since the intersection involves both city and county roads.
“The first developer did not do what they were supposed to do, the second development is saying that they are going to do it,” said City Manager Carisse LeJeune. “And then it becomes a discussion between the city and the county as to who does the warrant study, who pays for the warrant study and then once the warrant study is done, who puts the infrastructure in.”
Indian Bayou stormwater drainage improvements
Finally, the council voted to approve BKW Inc. as the contractor who will carry out improvements to Indian Bayou as part of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund Restoration Strategy.
The council agreed to pay BKW Inc. $392,905.85 to complete various stormwater drainage projects in Indian Bayou, including enlarging pipes and rerouting floodwater to different areas of Indian Bayou Drive so as to alleviate flooding issues.