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Power of Protest: How residents influenced recent city development plans

Residents influenced recent city development plans
Posted at 7:21 PM, Feb 21, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-21 19:26:00-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Wednesday night, city commissioners went against recommendations to move forward with plans in Midtown and the Southside.

Residents were loud and clear at this week's town hall meetings about plans to bring police headquarters to a Southside shopping center.

The pushback on the project worked. On Wednesday night, the commission voted to pick a new site.

"People were concerned about the jobs that could potentially be lost as a result of the displacement of the businesses that currently exist," said Curtis Richardson, Tallahassee City Commissioner.

Wednesday also was a win for those in Midtown. Commissioners rejected all bids for a parking garage after people asked to pause plans.

"We want business owners, and we want residents, and we want staff at the table sitting together, coming up with solutions," said Rachelle McClure with the Lafayette Park Neighborhood Association. "So, I hope this creates just a really, genuinely vibrant Midtown district for everyone."

While the city goes back to the drawing board with these two projects, Commissioner Richardson said he's encouraged by how many people got involved and spoke out about them. He said he hopes that continues moving forward.

The city will work with the Midtown Action Group to come up with short-term options for parking.

Meanwhile, staff will come up with other possible locations for the Public Safety Complex at the next commission meeting.