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Letter Against E Sidewalk On A1A

Thursday, August 23, 2018



6001 Highway A1A, Indian River Shores, FL 32963
(772) 231-1771 FAX (772) 231-4348

August 23, 2018

Mr. Mike Dew
Secretary, Florida Department of Transportation
605 Suwanee Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0450
Mr. Gerry O’Reilly
District 4 Secretary
3400 West Commercial Boulevard
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33309

Reference: Project 438042-1, State Road A1A Resurfacing, Restoration, and Rehabilitation Project

As a result of Councilmembers receiving hundreds of emails, letters and calls, Project 438042-1 was
included in today’s Indian River Shores Town Council meeting agenda and was discussed at length. Our
Council chambers was overflowing with at least 72 residents from all sections of the Town. Many of those
in attendance represented their homeowner’s association, which contain over half of the Town’s residents.
Every Council member spoke, as did many members of the audience on this topic.
The overwhelming majority of the attendees and the unanimous vote of Council addressed two major parts
of the project: 1) alter the proposed plan to remove the sidewalk along the East side of A1A, and 2) widen
the shoulders of the roadway to allow for 6’ or 7’ bike lanes.
The Town of Indian River Shores is almost completely built out, and our population is growing very slowly.
The current use of the sidewalk on the West side is relatively low and could handle considerably more foot
traffic now and in the future.
The current bike lanes, on the other hand, are very narrow at 4’ and are used extensively by cyclists. The
real safety danger in Indian River Shores is BIKE related. Riders need more room to ride safely.
The Council realizes that the requested plan change to accommodate the removal of the unneeded and
unwanted East sidewalk and to increase the shoulder size to 6’ or 7’ will require a design change, and that
will take time to complete. If the project is completed in the next few years, the Council and residents are
comfortable with the timing.

In Secretary O’Reilly’s letter to Representative Grall, he mentioned there is a section of 50 mph roadway
on A1A and that there is no acceptable shoulder width at that speed. If necessary, the Town will assist in
taking action to have the speed reduced to 45 mph to facilitate a 7’ shoulder in that area.
I cannot state more strongly the clear desire of the entire Town Council and the vast majority of Indian River
Shores residents to not build the unneeded sidewalk, and the insistence to improve the safety for cyclists by
adding the needed width to the bike lane. These changes to the current proposal, Project 438042-1, will
most certainly enhance safety and further FDoT’s mission to “Preserve the quality of our environment and
our community.”
I am happy to discuss this project and its impact on Indian River Shores in more depth with you at any time.
Sincerely yours,

Signature of Thomas F. Slater

Thomas F. Slater, for the Council
Town of Indian River Shores
Courtesy Copies:
Mr. Donovan Pessoa
3400 West Commercial Boulevard
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33309
Honorable Senator Debbie Mayfield
1801 27th Street
Vero Beach, FL 32960
Honorable Representative Erin Grall
Suite B2-203
1801 27th Street
Vero Beach, FL 32960-3388
Members of the Town of Indian River Shores Town Council (via email)
Members of the City of Vero Beach City Council (via email)
Members of the Indian River County Commission (via email)

  • Beware of phishing! Please read this article from your Chief of Public Safety.
  • Three candidates qualified for Town Council Elections on November 6, with 2 open seats currently held by Vice Mayor Mike Ochsner and Councilman Dick Haverland. Mike Ochsner, Brian Foley, and Jessie "Sam" Carroll have all qualified to run for Town Council.
  • Voting for the General Election on November 6th will be held at Christ by the Sea Methodist Church South of Town on A1A.

Sidewalk & A1A

  • FDoT has scheduled a second public update and input meeting on Thursday, November 1 at the Holiday Inn Oceanside. Two meeting times are offered, 10-noon or 4:30-6:30. Please see this link for a great amount of detail including graphics.
  • The Council wrote a letter to Florida Department of Transportation (FDoT) in response to resident outcry against the planned sidewalk on the East side of A1A. This link is to the letter, mailed August 24, 2018.
  • An FDoT meeting was held to discuss the A1A milling & resurfacing project on July 10, 2018.
    • The East-side sidewalk was an item of concern by a few residents, partly due to a false rumor that it was the Town's idea, rather than an FDoT policy requirement. Also the neighborhoods that have landscaping or ground-level lighting in the right of way will be required to remove them to prevent damage and obtain an FDoT permit to replace them.
    • The bike paths were another concern, with assurance that they will continue to be 4' wide. Flashing beacons for crosswalks at Sea Grape and Turtle Trail access crossings will be installed.
    • Timing of paving, which will be accomplished at night or off-peak hours to minimize disruption to traffic for our convenience. It is the smaller part of the project compared to the sidewalks.
    • The project is in the design stage. Plans will be reviewed and finalized by October. E-mail FDoT Project Manager Donovan Pessoa at or call (954) 777-4442.
    • Separate from this project is the fully actuated (weight-tripped or pedestrian button) traffic light at Fred Tuerk Drive/ Beachcomber Lane as recommended for safe crossing by the Florida Dept. of Transportation. It is expected to be functional by the end of 2018.
  • The recycling services was awarded for contract beginning November 1. Some changes to expect: no more 18-gallon bins, but a rolling cart system will be used with a 2-cart maximum for single family homes. Anything that doesn't fit inside the cart will incur an extra fee (amount TBD). Cardboard boxes will likely fit inside, but may need to be cut or flattened first. You may begin using your new cart November 7. Put your old recycle bin out on that day if you do not wish to keep it.
  • The Community Center has been demolished, and will be rebuilt over the next several months. Construction is underway, with exterior walls going up as of October 24.
  • FEMA has released the preliminary new Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM). The local risk of flooding has changed and there are steps you can take to protect your home from extensive damage often caused by flooding. The 90 day appeal process begins around late April / early May, which is followed by a 6-month adoption/compliance period. The FEMA website has the preliminary maps. The Town maps are in 0232J, 0234J, 0242J, 0253J, and 0261J.
  • The AT&T array for the second tier on the tower is installed and functional. Residents are encouraged to submit a work order with their carrier if the signal is not better. It's up to Verizon to schedule their staff to place their equipment at this point. Please see the page on this website devoted solely to this matter.
Cleared out land with trees in the background
  • We are pleased to report that the Town successfully competed for and was awarded two grants that will cover roughly 75% of the $1.4 million project to correct flooding and drainage issues along Old Winter Beach Road. Construction on the improvement began early April. Click on this link for project information.
  • Watering restrictions using City water (non-reuse) limits lawn sprinklers based on Daylight Savings Time changes, twice a week in spring/summer, once a week in fall/winter. Please find detailed information on the Utility Information page of our website.
  • Indian River Shores is a SAFE city in Florida, according to articles in TC Palm in May 2016 and in October 2017. Our residents are safe, well cared for and well protected thanks to the Town's Public Safety Department's triple-certified police, fire and paramedic/EMT staff.
  • Turtle nesting season runs from March 1 and continues through October 31. Please see this page with details.
  • Please click here to sign up for news alerts!
Cell tower hidden as a tree

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