By Sharon Aron Baron
In the latest proposal by 13th Floor homes, Woodlands residents will have no problem leaving their homes — it’s getting back that may be an issue.
On the May 4 agenda in front of the Broward County Commission, a vote would allow the “recreational” land designation of two 18-hole golf courses at the Woodlands to be changed to “residential,” thus making it possible for developers to move forward with building about 400 homes there.
If the change in land use designation sails ahead in front of the county commissioners, it goes to the Tamarac City Commission for final approval.
A new off-site transportation system improvement proposal was submitted on April 26 that converts many currently existing two-way roadway entrances and exits to outbound only.
- The entrance/exit at White Oak Lane to outbound only
- The entrance/exit at Banyan Lane to outbound only
- The entrance/exit at Holly Drive to outbound only
- The entrance/exit at Sago Palm Blvd to outbound only — On May 1, 13th Floor updated this to both entrance and exit.
- The entrance/exit to Bayberry Lane to outbound only
The only way residents would be able to return to their homes would be by entering Woodlands Blvd — and the recently added Sago Palm Blvd.
Map submitted to Broward County April 26, 2021
After our article went out, this is the new map submitted to Broward County on May 1, 2021
The updated map was submitted after our article relied on the April 26, 2021 traffic report that 13th Floor had sent to the county.
The new map now shows an ingress and egress at 64th Avenue — an improvement the City of Lauderhill has always objected to and will continue to oppose. There will also be three locations on Rock Island Road where there will be three exits; two on Rock Island Road with both ingress and egress, and one location on Rock island and Holly Drive, which is outbound only.
Currently, Rock Island Road between NW 44th Street and Commercial Boulevard is operating at Level of Service F, which is the worst level. Having three exits at that location will severely overburden an already overburdened roadway.
A large volume of inbound traffic will likely use Woodlands Boulevard to gain access to both Banyan Lane and White Oak Lane and many side streets, which will become one-way outbound-only streets under the 13th Floor proposal.
Another proposal on the map is adding a right turn lane from Woodlands Boulevard to Commercial Blvd. and Rock Island north to Commercial Blvd. This would be a massive undertaking to move FPL infrastructure — or even bury it to create this lane. There are no proposals as to how they will be doing this.
The developer, 13th Floor Homes, says the new homes and upgrades for the entrances to the Woodlands will give the association of about 900 homes a much-needed upgrade. And, so far, three elected officials had agreed: Mayor Michelle Gomez, Commissioner Debra Placko, and former Commissioner Julie Fishman.
The change in land use designation won its first pass in front of the city commission before the election of Vice Mayor Elvin Villalobos. It also passed the county planning council and the county commission last year. Now it is back in front of the county to be adopted.
After that first set of approvals, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) reviewed the proposal and found many adverse traffic impacts on Commercial Boulevard, Rock Island Road, the turnpike interchanges, and State Road 7, which were already at a failing level of service during commuting hours.
FDOT recommended that “The city should coordinate with the Department and the county before the adoption of the amendment to determine strategies for reducing, mitigating or eliminating adverse impacts resulting from this amendment, as required by ss.163.3177(6)(b)1.e., Florida Statutes.”
Between Rock Island Road and the turnpike entrance, Commercial Boulevard is already carrying 24 percent more vehicles than it should be, a transportation specialist found.
Instead of following this recommendation at the proposal’s second hearing in front of the Broward County Planning Council on Feb. 25, it passed with a 12-4 vote.
Residents are welcome to speak at the May 4 Broward County Commission meeting by registering online no later than 9:30 am on Tuesday, May 4 at RegisterToSpeak.Broward.org.
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- Sharon Aron Baron created the Woodlands Tamarac in 2010 for original News for the community. In 2011 she went on to create Tamarac Talk, in 2012, Coral Springs Talk and 2017, Parkland Talk.
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