Category Archives: Peninsula Bay News

Cortez Bridge “Breaking” News

The Cortez Bridge broke, again, about a week ago. Anyone trying to get on or off Anna Maria Island was stuck for about two hours. This is hardly newsworthy, but does call for an update on FDOT plans to address the need for improvement.

Estimates are that it could still be many years before construction begins, but as far as what is actually constructed, the FDOT appears focused on two options, both aimed at reducing traffic backups. One would be a higher, 35 ft. drawbridge requiring less frequent openings; the other would be a 65 ft. fixed span bridge.

Many in the area feel the fixed span option will clash with the character of Cortez, even if it does offer the most traffic-friendly solution. The 35 ft. bascule option would be the next best option for traffic, allowing a wider range of boats passage compared to the current 19 ft. span. Fixing or rebuilding the current bridge, while officially still in the mix, seems unpractical and highly unlikely.

Persons interested in having a say in the process can keep up with developments at the FDOT’s website, The study is scheduled to be completed this summer and a public hearing should be announced soon.

Peninsula Bay – A Smart Project

Bradenton Herald Editorial, July 23, 2016

“Growth is coming to Manatee County as population forecasts show, and traffic will remain a hot-button issue. Infill development is a high priority of the county. The Peninsula Bay property is destined to be developed. Preston’s proposal reflect smart and sensitive development, the best the county could hope for.”

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Peninsula Bay Announces Planning Commission Approval

We are pleased to announce that Peninsula Bay has received its first stamp of approval from the Manatee County Planning Commission. Our development team presented to the planning commission on July 14th and received a 5-1 vote to recommend approval for the general development plan and the rezoning request. We will make a similar presentation to the Manatee County Board of County Commissioners on September 1st.

“We are happy to have earned a vote of confidence from the planning commission,” said Whiting Preston. “We believe our vision for Peninsula Bay will be a tremendous benefit to the area, especially in terms of jobs, housing options and tax revenues. Our tagline has been ‘connecting people to the water’ and we are passionate about that. We are also dedicated to protecting and enhancing the local ecosystem and to reflecting the style and spirit of Cortez. We look forward to continuing with our plans in the months to come.”

Developer continues push for huge development near Cortez waterfront

By Rick Adams, July 13, 2016

“It’s going to make the property values go up,” said Volker. “They’re going to put up a marina at the end of the street, this way people won’t use the private boat ramp that we use right up the street and it’s just going to be good for everybody.”

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Peninsula Bay receives first OK, goes to county commission for approval

By Claire Aronson, July 14, 2016

“The traffic problems wouldn’t be because of Peninsula Bay, said Caleb Grimes, an attorney who represents the applicant. Without a development like this, we won’t generate the impact fees and monies and funds necessary to start fixing all those kids of roads.”

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Real Estate Is Leveraging Investments in Active Transportation Infrastructure

Active-Transportation-and-Real-Estate-The-Next-Frontier-1“Infrastructure drives our real estate investments. Investments in highways led to auto-oriented development. Investment in public transit led to development next to transit stops and rail stations. Now we are starting to see trail-oriented development,” commented Edward McMahon, senior resident fellow at the Urban Land Institute as he explained why new real estate projects were springing up alongside urban bike trails.

The trend for new development near active transportation trails and the increased willingness of developers and cities to create communities tailored to those who would rather cycle than drive is the topic of the recently published ULI report titled Active Transportation and Real Estate: The Next Frontier.

McMahon argued that these active transportation trails and the subsequent associated development were a response to the very real trend of people moving away from using privately owned cars and toward cycling, walking, and using public transit. He highlighted that Americans were driving 8 percent fewer miles than a decade ago and that residents in transit-rich cities such as New York, Boston, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C., now owned an average of less than one car per household. In addition, in 2014 Americans bought more bicycles (18.1 million) than cars and trucks combined (16.4 million). Not only is bike ownership on the rise, but so are bike-share schemes, which have grown in popularity from only seven in the world in 2002 to 750 globally today, including 70 in the United States.

Roswell Eldridge, chief operating officer of Toole Design Group, highlighted the opportunity for further growth in active transportation, since 43 percent of journeys undertaken in the United States were three miles (5 km) or less. Strong potential demand also exists for trail-oriented development, with 52 percent of Americans wanting to live in a community where they were not reliant on cars for transportation. This trend is being driven by millennials, with 45 percent of this demographic intentionally choosing not to drive and actively seeking out other modes of transportation.

Tadd Miller, chief executive officer of Milhaus, a developer that has built $250 million of developments along trails in Indianapolis alone over the past five years, argues that the trend is here to stay. “Finally at a point with shared mobility, where the financial benefit is there, the infrastructure is catching up and we finally have a demographic and age bracket that is accepting of it.”

– Urban Land Institute, April 2016