DSCA Comments on City of Sarasota Events Street Closure Approval Policy
On March 20, 2017, the City Commission discussed a proposal from the City Attorney for Ordinance 17-5207, which would have provided new guidelines for who gets to vote to approve street closures related to events in Downtown Sarasota. The background material related to that draft ordinance proposal can be found here:
The public hearing on the proposed ordinance options concluded as follows:
Mayor Shaw noted Commission consensus for the City Attorney’s Office to consult with Staff after they have gathered input and information from the stakeholders and to come back before the Commission to present a report at a later date.
In June 2017, DSCA asked its member condos to provide comments on a proposal for a solution to the City Events Street Closure Approval process. Those comments resulted in a refined proposal which was subsequently reviewed with the Downtown Sarasota Alliance (DSA), the Sarasota Downtown Merchants Association (SDMA) and the Palm Avenue Merchants Association (PAMA) to seek consensus on a proposed solution. The following is the proposal which is being submitted to City Staff:
Downtown Sarasota Condominium Association
Recommended Changes to Proposed City Ordinance 17-5207
- All businesses and residential property owners whose premises are located on a street proposed for an event-related closure of between 6 and 72 hours are deemed “Affected Parties”. Concurrent with the filing of an application for street closure, all Affected Parties shall be sent through the mail a “Notice of Proposed Street Closure” setting forth the name of the event and its sponsor, the date(s), and the location and duration of the street closure. The notice will further state that Affected Parties who have opinions on the proposed closure can communicate those opinions to the City Special Events Office within 30 days of receipt of such notice and both a mailing and e-mail address will be provided for that purpose. Public comment will be a significant factor in the decision by the City to approve or deny the closure application.
- Event-related street closures of any duration that prevent vehicular access, including limited vehicular access, to any residential building are prohibited under all circumstances except where 100% of the Affected Parties who are constrained by that condition have agreed to such closure.
- Event-related street closures of up to 6 hours that result in limited vehicular access to any residential building are permitted provided that i) such access is managed with mechanical or electronic means, such as stop and go lights, or by an official person charged with that responsibility; or, ii) where the nature of the event is such that reasonable intermittent access is afforded without the need for active management.
- Event-related street closures of between 6 and 72 hours cannot occur at any given location more frequently than twice in four consecutive weeks and twelve times in twelve consecutive months.