The Downtown Neighborhood Association Board of Directors met at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 10, 2009, in the Florencia condominium at 100 Beach Drive NE.
Board members present were president Marilyn Olsen, treasurer Allan Brockway, secretary Timothy J. Baker, and members John Harte, Peter Belmont and Joe Pugliano. Absent were Marie Stirling, Sydni Shollenberger, Marlys Meckler, Gene Ormond, Richard Freeburg and Mike Johnson.
Secretary – Minutes from the previous board meeting were approved as posted on the association web site.
Treasurer – The most recent financial report, also posted on the web site, was distributed by Mr. Brockway.
October Newsletter – We had planned to have a candidates’ night in advance of the November election, but that fell through because of schedule conflicts on the part of the mayoral canddiates. In light of that, the board decided informally to do a small distribution of the newsletter, rather than a large one, which would have been appropriate if we had the mayoral candidates in attendance.
Urban Porch Party – President Olsen reported that the first two of DNA’s planned Urban Porch Parties would be held on October 14 and November 11. The venue for the first party was intended to be the grassy area between the Mahaffey Theater and the new Dali Museum. City Architect Raul Quintana was scheduled to give a brief presentation of the city’s plans for that area. However, there were problems with that and the new Signature Place condominium building was also being considered. (Note: Following the meeting, the Signature was actually chosen. The program with Mr. Quintana was not changed.)
General Meeting – The agenda for the upcoming October general meeting was discussed, with a number of alternatives suggested to replace the candidates’ night. Peter Belmont agreed to contact a number of possible speakers. (Note: Mr. Belmont was able to scheulde USF history professor Gary Mormino to be the speaker.)
Baywalk proposal – Ms. Olsen updated the board on the status of the Baywalk revitalization plan. (See the minutes of August, 2009, for more details). She said that the city had not been able to come up with any alternatives to the proposal that the public sidewalk on the south side of the project be privatized. The board’s official position remains that alternatives should be investigated. No new action was taken.
Looper Trolleys – Ms. Olsen reported on plans by the Downtown Partnership to expand the Looper trolley service Downtown.She said the name was going to change from the Looper to St. Pete Trolleys, and the routes and schedule would be expanded.
The meeting adjourned at about 9:15 p.m.
Timothy J. Baker
Detorit Hotel – Some days after this meeting was adjourned, president Olsen notified board members by e-mail that St. Petersburg Preservation had submitted an application to have the Detorit Hotel declared a local historic landmark. Her email was on October 5, and noted that the city’s Community Preservation Commission was slated to vote on the issue on October 16.
Due to the tiime constraints involved, it was decided that if a motion were put forward, a vote could be taken by e-mail.
Peter Belmont said that he supported DNA taking a position in support of the application, but also noted that he is a board member of SPP, the sponsor of the application.
Timothy Baker then offered a motion “that the Downtown Neighborhood Association supports the designation of the Detroit Hotel as a local landmark, per the application by St. Petersburg Preservation.”
Sydni Shollenberger second the motion. Yes votes were recorded from Mr. Baker, Ms. Shollenberger, Mr. Belmont, Joe Pugliano, Mike Johnson, Dick Freeburg, Ms. Olsen and John Harte. No negative votes were received. The motion passed.