Public Comment on non-agenda items:

Barbara Saxton, Chair of the Friends of River Oaks, invited Council and residents to attend the “This Place Matters” event from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 18.  There will be planting classes for kids of all ages, easy walking paths to the river and an opportunity to learn how to save this property located at the end of the road at 9541 Broadway Avenue East.

Action Items

Design Review Board applications

Only two applications were received as a result of advertising efforts to fill the vacancies on the Design Review Board.  A full Board includes 8 members; there are currently 5 active members on this Board.

Council voted to suspend advertising for applicants until a workshop can be held in the fall.

Council liaison appointments

Council approved the liaison appointments for 2019.  (Liaison appointments)

Workshop Items

Estero on the River property update

Public Works Director David Willems stated that the Village’s contractor has completed securing all of the abandoned buildings on the property.

The contractor applied plywood coverings to the windows to prevent access; the coverings have been painted to protect the plywood from rotting.  The observatory has roll-down shutters which have been permanently closed so there is no way to access the building.  “Do not trespass” signs will be positioned on the property.

In addition, the large real estate sign has been removed from the corner of US 41 and Corkscrew Road.

The next step will be to vet each of the buildings with the state to determine whether they can be permanently removed followed by an archeological assessment of the property once/if the buildings have been removed.  (Presentation)

Parks, Recreation & Open Space update

The Village consultant David Barth, Barth & Associates, presented an update on the master plan, including the recently completed project’s needs assessment.

The vision is that the parks and recreation system will meet the needs of both seasonal and full-time residents, help build an identity for Estero and can be implemented, operated and cost-effective.

Since there are no required set standards, the community can determine what is needed.  The Village staff and Mr. Barth visited the communities of Weston and Doral to review their projects.  In addition, the contractor has mailed surveys to a number of Estero residents, conducted online surveys, and held a community workshop.

Some of the community’s top priorities for recreation amenities include nature parks, multi-purpose trails, performing arts centers and sidewalks.  Some of the community’s top priorities for activities/programs include community special events, fitness/wellness and nature programs.

Additional workshops are planned with the final master plan to be completed by the end of the year.  (Presentation)

Village website update

Assistant to the Village Manager Kyle Coleman gave a presentation on the recent updates made to the website as well as a timeline for further changes to be made in the future.  Due to these changes, portions of the website have been down temporarily and some forms are still not available on the site.

The changes are making everything posted on the website ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) accessible.  There will be text to voice for the legally blind and color-blind as well as closed captioning on the meeting live streaming and archived videos for those who are hearing-impaired.  The website is expected to be fully updated next month.

The objectives are to allow for maximum accessibility and accuracy of content, minimize staff upkeep efforts, and provide continuous reevaluation and reengineering efforts in order to best serve all customers.  (Presentation)

The next Council meeting will be held on Wednesday, June 5, 2019.