Good reasons why Old Orchid HOA opposes new Publix

Article Courtesy of  The Treasure Coast Newspapers

By Peter Saxon

Published December 29, 2018


The Old Orchid Homeowners Association in Vero Beach opposes a Publix Supermarket on Orchid Island for many reasons:

  • Increased traffic on SR 510 inevitably causes back-ups on the causeway, on driveways from Orchid island Golf and Beach, Old Orchid, Seasons, Michaels Creek, the EMS and fire station, the Jungle Trail and Summerplace.

  • The single east-west lanes on the causeway bridge will back up from accidents on SR510 at the driveways into the site.

  • Truck traffic, including construction trucks, maintenance trucks and delivery trucks, will multiply both day and night.

  • The long east and west pedestrian walkways across SR510 to the site are dangerous to impaired or elderly persons.

  • A superficial traffic analysis prepared for Publix lacks any value because it fails to analyze any of the above crucial factors.

Just as importantly, the tranquility, beauty and safety of the neighborhoods adjacent will be lost by the disproportionate, incongruous commercial complex.

Light and noise pollution, environmental degradation and rat infestation from discarded trash, as well as storm-water runoff, will degrade beachfront communities. No environmental impact assessment has been provided by Publix.

Crime will explode with teen drinking, drag racing and drug use at the Publix parking lot at night. More break-ins, panhandling and stolen cars will follow.

The six waivers required by Publix from the building code are completely incompatible with the surrounding area:
Store height is to increase from 20 feet to 34 feet; a flat roof is required. Building size is to increase from 6,000 to 31,000 square feet. The sign area is to increase 38 square feet, with the letter size going from 10 inches to 6 feet.

The mall will stand out like a sore thumb from the causeway bridge and will tower above the tree line at ground level. No reason exists for waiving these protections.