As a resident of Manatee County for 39 years I am so sorry to hear the decision from hearing officer Jack Hawkins approving the "special use permit" for the Shien Deh Temple, which was approved to be built in the quiet country-like residential neighborhood on 18th Avenue East.
This two-story, 9,750-squre-foot structure on a 2.39-acre lot will not be consistent with the surrounding neighborhood.
Obviously the children's safety walking or biking is not a concern, considering the narrow roads with no sidewalks. Let alone this is a flood prone neighborhood' parking in a non-paved lot on rainy days like we had this past week will have the worshipers parking on the street. I can see more yards flooding.
This is a septic-tank community; can you imagine if they had a problem on their property with overflow?
With the excess of traffic coming and going to worship, is this compatible with the safety of the neighboring families? The residents cherish this quiet country neighborhood, which will never be the same, and this will lower their home values. Have they been thrown to the dogs?
Maybe Mr. Hawkins would like to live next to the temple. Unfortunately his decision will only be the beginning for others to request a "special use permit" in their community. Hope their issues won't be taken so lightly.
Has this opened up a can of worms?