Like many Apalachicola citizens, we chose to live here because of the authentic nature of the city. We have a thriving downtown, beautiful residential areas, and a waterfront that provides beauty as well as a source of livelihood for members of the seafood industry.
This unique combination of traits is fragile. Without active preservation efforts by city officials and citizens, we could lose what many of us value and support. The CVS proposal to build a huge new store represents a dangerous step toward a strip mall environment that is the antithesis of the heart and soul of our city.
The current proposal is inconsistent with the site’s current “Neighborhood Commercial” zoning; it does not comply with Land Development Code regulations for new structures in the historic district; and the design is inconsistent with the currently developing character of that section of Avenue E.
In addition, the massive paving proposed for driveways and parking will divert stormwater and retain heat, harming adjacent properties, as well as adversely affecting the policy of keeping alleys open – one of Apalachicola’s most distinguishing assets.
This deal will not bring prosperity; job growth will not be significant. What it will do is increase traffic, damage the natural and historic environment, and compromise the heritage and ecotourism that brings many visitors for shopping, entertainment, dining, festivals, fishing and water sports.
We urge our mayor, city commissioners, and members of the Planning & Zoning Ccommission to take a hard look at this bad deal and make the right choice. A decision to reject the CVS proposal will keep Apalachicola as a unique, thriving and wonderful city for families, local business owners, and visitors.
Kay Carson and Paul McAbee