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Litigation Blocks Coral Bay Development Discussion

Oct. 11, 2004 – Although Coral Bay Community Council members expected to hear details of a major subdivision about to be developed on parcel nine in Estate Carolina, they were disappointed when surveyor Harry Gauriloff told them the owners prevented him from speaking on the topic.
"I personally regret we can't have an open discussion about a very large piece of property," Sharon Coldren, council president, said to the dozen or so people gathered Monday at the John's Folly Learning Institute on St. John.
The 160-acre property is already divided into 15 parcels of five to 23 acres. Those parcels will be further subdivided.
Gauriloff did allow that a road would run from the Spice Hill subdivision at Bordeaux to near Roller's Garden Shop, located on the road that runs past Love City Minimart.
Gauriloff said the property, owned by the Gerda Marsh estate, is currently under U.S. District Court adjudication, which is why the owners don't want him to discuss their plans in public.
Coldren said that since the development will have a huge impact on Coral Bay, it was important to know what's going to happen.
Gauriloff instead made a short presentation about alternatives to the wide roads currently mandated by the Planning and Natural Resources Department.
He suggested narrower roads with pull-off places so vehicles could pass. They would require less clearing of the steep hillsides in the Coral Bay area, which would cut down on erosion and consequently, the amount of sediment flowing downhill into the harbor.
"More and more debris is getting into the ocean," he said.
He said it would take a community effort to convince the Planning Department narrower roads would work.
Gauriloff said a precedent for narrow roads exists at the Peter Bay subdivision on St. John's north coast. He said its roads are 10-feet wide.
Pam Gaffin asked what happens when the area develops to the point where narrow roads can't handle the increased traffic.
Council member Kent Irish outlined a plan to name roads and develop a computerized database similar to that used by the OnStar locating system to guide emergency crews to Coral Bay homes.
He said the initial goal is to erect signs at the 66 places where side roads intersect with main roads.
Irish said the signs cost $98 each and would be paid for by residents.
While road issues occupied most of the meeting, members also learned their host, the John's Folly Learning Institute, needs volunteers for its after-school program. The program runs from 3:30 to 6 p.m.
Anyone with even part of those 2-½ hours to donate and with any skill they can teach the children should call 714-7134 to volunteer.
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