TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Commissioners on the Blueprint Intergovernmental Agency Board of Directors painstakingly voted to accept the Project Development and Environmental Study for the Northeast Gateway project, moving it one step closer to completion.
"What we are doing is planning for growth 10, 20, 30 years out, and let me tell you, you've got to start now," said Commissioner Curtis Richardson.
The project has been met with quite a bit of community pushback -- some upset about roundabouts, others who think funding would be better spent on other projects. Neighbors like Pastor Lenny Marshall of St Phillip AME Church expressing concerns both at a recent public hearing and during tonight's meeting.
"I believe all of us know that deep down inside the moving forward of this project is just not in the best interest of all of us who call ourselves members of the community," said Rev. Dr. Lenny Marshall of St. Phillip AME Church.
Commissioners like Brian Welch and Kristian Dozier repeatedly acknowledged that moving the project forward would leave many upset, but were not convinced that further delays would be in the community's best economic interest.
The majority voted against Jeremy Matlow's motion to wait another year before moving forward. Matlow, now looking to the community to continue the fight.
"I think the public should continue to state their objections," said Matlow. "This is a long process ahead of us. There's gonna be legal challenges, there's gonna be eminent domain actions, there's gonna be advance funding decisions, so I mean the fight is far from over."
The next Board of Director's Meeting is scheduled for July 15.