Committee of the Islands

Keeping Sanibel Special Since 1975

Why we have to stay in the parade

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May 05, 2011

ISLAND SUN - MAY 6 , 2011 8 acceptable pace under Sanibel’s Land Why We Have Development Code . In the years since , many groups , indi - Treat the To Stay In viduals , and the city government have worked to develop tools for protecting The Parade Sanibel : The Forever Wild Amendment , which ensured that environmentally sen - special women sitive city lands could not be sold with - out the people’s consent ; the People’s in your life to a Choice Charter Amendments , which also required a vote of the people for the most basic of our land development fabulous codes to be changed ; and , more recent - ly , measures to prevent the bay beach day of zone from development prohibited by beauty ! the Sanibel plan and public opposition to poorly planned mass transit propos - als . Vigilance , effort required by all Barbara Joy Cooley Mike Gillespie Protecting Sanibel from overdevelop - by Barbara Joy Cooley , president , ment – while allowing for development and Mike Gillespie , vice president , that honors the city’s Vision Statement Moms Committee of the Islands and the Sanibel Plan – requires vigilance and effort by all islanders . Think of it as n a recent conversation , a friend who a parade that continues through time , RECEIVE is new to the island asked how it is a parade that works best when people Ithat Sanibel came to be the way it is – move from being spectators and join in other words , why doesn’t it look like ? a FREE product in as participants . This is especially Marco Island or Fort Lauderdale ? How true , paradoxically , now that so much did that come to be ? ? complimentary has been accomplished . We may tend The answer , as we’ve noted before in to think , because we are now so well these columns , is rooted both in history champagne , wine , protected against overdevelopment , and in the present . After the causeway that our vigilance can be relaxed - - that was completed in 1963 , the pace of and chocolates ! maybe it’s time to unfold a lawn chair change quickened on Sanibel . By the and just watch the parade go by . early 1970s , many islanders were very ? 20 % off any But the more recent measures cited concerned that Sanibel would not be above show that the process of keep - special anymore . Indeed , Lee County packages of ing Sanibel special is an ongoing one , had plans to allow for 10 times more which requires the continuing support housing units on Sanibel than the num - 2 or more spa and participation of all those who love ber that currently exists . Under these and enjoy the unique benefits of this treatments plans , the total population of the island incomparable island . was projected to be 90,000 . So if you want to be a part of keep - booked ! Many island residents were wor - ing Sanibel special , don’t just sit on ried about this very real possibility . To the curb . Join the parade . Come to ? Through 5 / 14 / 11 keep development under control and city council meetings to listen , to learn , to protect the sanctuary character of and to voice your opinions . Join with the island , two groups engaged in a groups and efforts to protect our island . truly herculean effort for the city to Volunteer your time and contribute to incorporate : the Sanibel Planning Board them . Keep us ahead of the game . As and an organization called Sanibel the great tennis player Rod Laver once Tomorrow . Thanks to their efforts , and said , “ The most vulnerable part of my the islanders who supported them , the game comes when I’m ahead . Never let Sanibel we know today was indeed suc - up . ” cessfully incorporated as an indepen - The Committee of the Islands is dently governed city within Lee County . proud to have played a part in each of ( Afterward the two groups that helped the causes and efforts referred to above . achieve that incorporation merged in As always , we welcome your ideas and 1975 to form the Committee of the input about this and other island issues . Islands , whose mission was to help pro - GIFT CERTIFICATES Please visit our website at www.coti.org , tect the gains that had been made . ) or send us your thoughts via email to It was just the beginning massage . facials . salon coti @ coti.org . The intervening years have shown manis & pedis that the struggle to keep Sanibel spe - cial did not end with incorporation , but fitness classes . cosmetics . skincare began with it . Many efforts over these years – some would call it “ eternal vigi - 4,000 square feet of lance ” – have been employed to protect beauty & wellness ! Sanibel’s environment . A poll taken in 1978 showed that building and growth continued to concern most of Sanibel voters . In response , a petition was cir - culated requesting that the city council adopt a Rate of Growth ordinance . On November 21 , 1978 , 72 percent of those voting approved the ordinance , the first of its kind east of the Rockies . COMFORT BY DESIGN The ordinance stayed in effect until 1987 , by which time the island’s growth ( 239 ) 395 - 0666 • 1 - 800 - 454 - 3008 239.579.1470 . Drive Captiva 14830 . Square Chadwicks had become more stable and devel - Sanibel Island • 1640 Periwinkle Way in Limetree KAYCASPERSON.COM opment began to proceed at a more Across from the Bank of the Islands

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