Saturday, December 13, 2014

About the Chapel-by-the-Lake site in West Palm Beach

This is an interesting story about a "rare, 3-judge panel" that was convened to settle the dispute over the Chapel-by-the-Lake site in West Palm Beach. Here is an excerpt from Eliot Kleinberg's piece in the Post:
Did West Palm Beach commissioners break their own rules in January when they green-lighted the controversial luxury condominium at the waterfront Chapel-by-the-Lake site? A rare 3-judge panel convened Friday to hear those arguments.

In one of two legal actions filed in February, the group Citizens for Thoughtful Growth asked that such a panel decide whether the approval was legal. The judges made no ruling Friday; one in favor of Citizens would send the project back to the planning board or the city commission, stopping construction, which already is underway. The chapel was bulldozed about Labor Day.
The issues stem from the question of whether the Planning Commission is advisory. After its review of the project, changes were made and the project never went back to the Planning Commission. Something similar happened here in Lake Worth way-back-when as the Lucerne condominium went through the Planning and Zoning/Historic Resource Preservation Board. The board approved a building with a public parking component and more interesting architectural features around the parapet at the top of the building. After those changes were made the project never made it back to the Planning Board. That's the basis for the argument here.

1 comment:

WP Ralph said...

It's impossible to separate the politics from this. Remember this was a unanimous vote by the West Palm Commission to proceed. By failing to convince even one commissioner the Citizens for Thoughful Growth have a weak case. They also are setting themselves up for damages for any costly delays. Besides the risk of losing this effort could become very expensive.