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Colony developer reaffirms his lower density promise

Chuck Whittall hopes a statement to town staff will ease concerns of Longboat Key residents.

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  • | 1:18 p.m. March 9, 2017
Chuck Whittall has said he will seek buildings no taller than nine stories, not the higher buildings originally proposed.
Chuck Whittall has said he will seek buildings no taller than nine stories, not the higher buildings originally proposed.
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Chuck Whittall on Thursday told city leaders what his new intentions are regarding the Colony Beach & Tennis Resort property.

In an email to Longboat Key Town Manager Dave Bullock and Planning, Zoning and Building Director Alaina Ray, the Unicorp National Developments president affirmed specifics regarding his proposed project’s height and density.

“I wanted to go on record with the town and state as I have in several public meetings that we will not request any more than nine stories in height and we will not request any more than an additional 150 residential units,” Whittall wrote.

Whittall’s statement comes less than one week before Key residents vote on a referendum that will either approve or disapprove the developer’s original proposal for the property: the addition of 180 residential units to the Colony’s existing 237 tourism units.

The original proposal also included buildings that reached a maximum height of 12 stories.

In the email, Whittall mentioned that Key residents have questioned his intention to move forward with the lower density proposal, should the referendum win approval, and he hopes his statement will quash these concerns.

“I wanted to tell the public and make this of record,” he wrote.

Whittall announced his intention to decrease the height and density of his project two weeks ago, saying that his decision was influenced by conversations he’s had with concerned Key residents at more than a dozen public meetings.

Political action committee Preserve Longboat Key Inc. hosted a presentation regarding the future of the Colony property at the Longboat Key Club and Resort on Monday evening. The PAC is responsible for frequent emails to Key voters, as well as signs placed up and down the Key, urging residents to vote "no" on the referendum. 

During the event, PAC members reinforced the fact that the referendum will approve or deny Unicorp’s original proposal of 180 units, regardless of what the developer’s expressed intentions for the property are.

Election day is Tuesday March 14.


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