Coligny Building Plan Loses Favor with Merchants


June 22, 2008

By Tim Donnelly – Island Packet

Town officials plan to revisit a proposal to include a commercial building as part of the redevelopment of the public parking area at Coligny Beach after the idea drew fire from local merchants.

The town in 2006 approved a conceptual design for a new parking area and park on the site of the current public parking lot and Smokehouse restaurant in the Coligny area, part of the overall plan to revitalize the island’s busiest tourism district and make it more pedestrian-friendly.

That plan called for up to 500 parking spaces to replace the approximately 400 there now, plus a building that could be used for storage, restrooms, the town’s Facilities Management staff and a restaurant or other commercial use.

The idea was to provide beachgoers with a place to grab a snack or suntan lotion on their way to the beach.

The project isn’t scheduled to get under way at least until the redesign of the beach entrance is completed next year, but the commercial aspect has lost favor over time, said Councilman John Safay, who represents the Coligny area.

“The more we got along, the more we had local merchants say, ‘What is the town doing getting involved
competing with our business?” he said. “It started to make a little bit of sense. … The more we started thinking, maybe this wasn’t a good idea.”



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