Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

St. Armands BID seeks more event scrutiny

With two new art festivals scheduled on Lido Key during the height of season in 2016, Circle leaders are concerned about the events’ impact on traffic in the area.

  • By
  • | 7:20 a.m. May 20, 2015
  • Longboat Key
  • News
  • Share

A moratorium on events during the busiest time of year is already in place at St. Armands Circle Park, but Circle leaders are worried those restrictions won’t do enough to cut down on the area’s seasonal traffic issues.

At the St. Armands Business Improvement District’s May 12 meeting, St. Armands Circle Association Executive Director Diana Corrigan informed the board about two events scheduled during the height of season in 2016. Those events — both art festivals — will take place on Lido Key in February and April next year.

Although the blackout period doesn’t extend beyond St. Armands, those present at the meeting worried the Lido events will defeat the purpose of the moratorium on events on the Circle. 

The restriction was designed to reduce worsening traffic congestion and protect local merchants during a lucrative period, but St. Armands leaders said additional activity on the adjacent barrier islands could keep people away from the Circle.

“If they keep booking these events out there and adding more traffic, it’s going to shut the businesses down,” Corrigan said.

The board agreed to investigate its options for preventing similar events from popping up in the future. That could mean city staff is directed to be more selective when granting approval for special events, or the Sarasota City Commission may need to approve new regulations.

Either way, St. Armands stakeholders are committed to protecting the interests of the shopping district and surrounding residential areas throughout peak season.

“We've got enough events as it is,” Corrigan said. “To add new events during season is insane.”


Related Articles