Most Recent Entries
- Emily’s List again backs Ehrlich
- Jaroch: Tampa 912 “one of the first ones targeted”
- GOP Hispanic outreach official switches parties
- Castor, Crist, local Dems raise $$ for Graham’s daughter
- Joyner designated Senate Democratic leader
- Castor to Obama: Reform “outdated” Cuba embargo, travel ban
- U.S. House Dems send Weatherford letter re Medicaid
- La Gaceta ad, 300 signers, back Castor trip to Cuba
- Ehrlich announces she’ll try again v. Young
- Proposed Defense Budget Saves Clearwater-based National Guard WMD Unit
- Sarasota GOP’s next Statesman of the Year: Sean Hannity
- Mack joins dad’s lobbying firm
- Hagan, Higginbotham lead county commission candidates in fundraising
- Shimberg leaves Buckhorn’s staff for Lightning job
- Rep. Castor’s father dies
- Breaking News
- Back To School
- Allnighter For An iPhone
- 2008 Florida Primary
- A Killer's Grip: The Day Of Execution
- Al-Arian Trial
- Ask The Professor
- Back to College with Adam Emerson
- Baird Helgeson In Key West
- Behind The Crime
- Behind The Wheel
- Boot Camp Death: The Trial
- Branding Tampa
- Business & Careers
- Bus Money
- Civil Rights Movement
- Castro Resigns: Bay Area Reacts
- Coming Back From Extremes
- Couey Trial
- Consumer Updates With Stacie Schaible
- Convention Ears
- Day Without An Immigrant
- Destruction In Central Florida
- Dick Greco
- Diminishing Agriculture in Florida
- Driver's Licensing Soundoff
- Election Connection With Krista Klaus
- Election Day Updates
- Elevated Crosstown Opens
- Governor's Inauguration 2007
- Good Friday For Skipping School
- Great American Teach-In
- Guestbook - Al Lopez
- Guestbook - Gators Are National Champs
- Guestbook - James Dungy
- Higher Gas Prices, Higher Profits For Oil Companies
- Highlands News Updates
- Holiday Blog
- Holiday Office Parties
- Hurricane Guide Updates
- I-4 Traffic
- Insurance Protest Hits The Road
- I-75 Tanker Accident Leads To Traffic Snarls
- International AIDS Conference
- Lafave Plea Deal
- Interstate 4 Disaster
- Largo City Manager Update
- Life - As It Happens
- Live From Cuba
- Life 2.0
- Medicare Part D - Countdown
- Memorial Day Travel
- Memories Of Sea Wolf Restaurant
- Pasco County: What Makes It Special?
- Pasco Health Care
- Out Of The Park
- Plugged In with Jim Collins
- Polk County News Blog
- Politics 2.0
- Primary Voting Day
- Rising Gas Prices
- Saint Leo Trip
- Black Friday Shopping
- Shuttle Updates
- Smoky Skies
- Steele Murder Trial
- Target 8 With Steve Andrews
- The Crime Blog
- Onstott Trial
- The Road To City Hall
- The Weather Spot
- Traffic Tickets Backlog
- Training Videos
- View From The Stands
- War Stories
- Weather Dog
- Command Post Tampa
- Fact Finders - Databay Blog
- Guestbook: Remembering The Fallen Soldiers
- Fresh Squeezed Politics
- RNC 2012: The Road to Tampa
- Political Safari
The university plans for slight increases at its campuses, but the governor wants to hold the line.
The Rays set a season high for runs at Camden Yards Friday, and needed nearly every one in a 12-10 slugfest.
The driver of a pickup who crashed into a Hillsborough County School District bus died at the scene of the Friday afternoon crash, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said.
The bear, which scampered up a backyard tree near Egypt Lake, had been trapped and tagged in Orlando a year ago and released in the Ocala National Forest.
Check Out Group’s “Guiding Principles” For Heartland Parkway
Posted Feb 28, 2007 by Billy Townsend
Updated Feb 28, 2007 at 04:30 PM
The Heartland Environmental Agricultural Rural Task Force (HEART), an organization representing landowners pushing for the Heartland Parkway, has released a draft version of its “guiding principles” in backing the project. The group’s public point man, former state senator Rick Dantzler of Winter Haven, emphasizes that this document is only a draft and could change through further consultation with planning and environmental groups.
HEART says it wants to see more than just the 110-mile toll road essentially linking Lakeland, Winter Haven and Interstate 4 with Fort Myers. It envisions an corridor of green space, public infrastructure and innovative planning that would allow the so-called Heartland region to develop successfully and with order in coming years.
We’ve published the full draft document below. Take a look. And for more background, see the Tribune story detailing Dantzler’s vision.
HEARTLAND PARKWAY CORRIDOR
RURAL LAND GUIDING PRINCIPLES
• The population growth of Florida is projected to increase south of I-4 by six million people over the next 25 years. This growth will be dispersed throughout the southern portion of the peninsula, with an estimated 1.5 million people moving into the Heartland Corridor Region (Hendry, Glades, Highlands, DeSoto, Hardee, Northeast Collier and Polk counties). During that same timeframe, the number of out-of-state and international visitors to Florida is anticipated to grow from 84 million to 146 million;
• Over the next 25 years the total volume of freight moving to, from, and within Florida is anticipated to grow from 847 million tons to 1.5 billion tons.
• Many of Florida’s existing statewide and regional transportation corridors cannot meet this anticipated increase in demand due to constraints on adding sufficient new capacity, and the same is true for the existing facilities in the Heartland.
• The development of a regional transportation, infrastructure, and greenway corridor can be an effective tool for accommodating, coordinating and organizing the population growth of the Heartland Region. The Heartland Corridor provides an opportunity to plan for the future of approximately two million acres of land.
• A Heartland Corridor will change development patterns in the Heartland. In order to achieve a proper balance of community growth (both existing and new), conservation and agriculture, it is necessary to reexamine and modify local land use plans with the Corridor in mind. By collaborating with the Heartland Partners, local governments can utilize land use planning strategies that address the long-term needs of residents and property owners proactively, while preserving vast areas of greenspace for conservation and agriculture. This will result in a vibrant and sustainable Heartland Region that largely avoids incremental growth patterns which cause “rural sprawl.” The landowner Partners will commit to engaging in long-term land use planning for their property.
• In planning for the growth of the Heartland area, it will be essential that private property rights, community visions, the environment, land stewardship, economic prosperity, public infrastructure, and financial feasibility be addressed.
• An early understanding of important environmental resources is essential to creating long-term strategies to protect critical habitat in the Heartland Region and for long-term growth planning. It is important that identification and maintenance of ecosystems, habitats and resources that are areas of compelling state interest are accomplished.
• In order to view natural systems from a larger context, the Heartland Partners will collaborate on land use plans to the extent practicable and prudent, and encourage cooperation and coordination of local government comprehensive plan changes.
• Maintenance and enhancement of the viability of Florida’s agricultural economy, control of urban sprawl, and protection of the character of the Region should also be accomplished.
• Long-term agricultural viability should be encouraged, but flexibility in land uses will be important due to the uncertain nature of world markets and the impacts of various natural agents on agricultural products. The Partners will utilize and propose new incentive-based measures to encourage maintenance of agricultural lands in agricultural uses, and to help retain agriculture as a viable long-term industry in the Heartlands region.
• Allow the conversion of rural land to other uses in appropriate locations, discourage urban sprawl and encourage compact development that utilizes creative land use planning techniques. Such techniques should strive to reduce the footprint of development on the landscape, produce higher residential and non-residential property values, create a substantial, long-term positive effect on employment and produce a positive net fiscal impact on the region.
• In addition to other methods, preservation and conservation of the Heartland’s natural resources should be accomplished through incentive programs such as Rural Land Stewardship and other innovative planning techniques that allow land development to occur while setting aside or enhancing important natural resources areas. Land acquisition programs such as Florida Forever will be supported as one of the tools to accomplish these goals, and the Heartland Partners agree to support sufficient funding of said program. The result of these incentive-based programs should be significant green areas, park areas, and wildlife preserves and corridors to protect the natural resources and hydrologic systems of the region.
• Rural vistas adjacent to any regional transportation corridor will be encouraged and incentivized in appropriate locations through the use of setbacks, appropriate land uses and public land acquisition.
• Land uses that are incompatible with the natural functions of wetland and upland habitat shall be located in areas that will minimize adverse impacts to water quality and quantity and listed animal and plant species. Land use planning shall seek to maintain the contiguity of significant wetland and upland habitat, and seek opportunities for habitat or hydrologic restoration, to the maximum extent practicable.
• The Heartland Partners envision that population growth can be substantially accommodated either through the enhancement of existing rural towns, or through the creation of new sustainable mixed-use towns and villages rather than sprawling low-density single use development. Higher densities in selected areas based on suitability factors must be allowed to ensure that the development of new communities is sustainable and fiscally neutral or positive.
• The provision of public infrastructure, including water, wastewater, open space, transportation systems, and services may require public and private cooperation, thereby establishing a broad base of financial responsibility/opportunity relative to these public expenditures.
Property Owner Objectives
Protect private property rights.
Maintain the right to farm and manage agricultural land.
Maintain and enhance property values.
Secure flexible and diverse land use alternatives.
Be allowed to convert land from agriculture to other uses in appropriate locations.
Receive fair value for land that is dedicated for Heartland Parkway right-of-way.
Environmental Conservation Objectives
Establish functional interconnected wildlife corridors and other natural systems.
Avoid and minimize impacts to wetland and upland habitat.
Protect listed plant and animal species.
Promote restoration of impacted areas.
Promote best management practices for all land uses.
Local Government Objectives
Protect health safety and welfare of citizens.
Stimulate and support economic development and diversification.
Maintain acceptable level of service standards for public services and facilities.
Protect and enhance the tax base.
Engage in public private partnerships to plan and build necessary infrastructure.
Participate in decisions regarding the location alignment and access to the Heartland Parkway to minimize adverse impacts on community resources and cohesion.
• The ability to reach these objectives will rely on an innovative and incentive based system that will not be dependent on a regulatory approach. The mechanisms to achieve such desired results may include a program of innovative planning and development incentives, economic incentives, and other measures, such as incentives to reward best management practices, providing cost-efficient delivery of public services or purchasing development rights through, but not necessarily limited to, rural lands stewardship programs.