City Purchases Old Library Parcel
By Marie Puleo
At its Nov. 13 meeting, the City Commission voted 3-2 to buy a parcel of land at 1207 E. Atlantic Blvd., just west of the site of the former library, which was relocated to the new library facility at the Pompano Beach Cultural Center last year.
The City intends to unify the newly acquired property with the adjacent old library property, which it currently owns, and surplus it for future development. The idea behind the $500,000 purchase of the property was to increase the site from 29,223 square feet to 46,760 square feet, and maximize the options for its future use and development. The City anticipates the unification of the two lots will increase the square-foot value.
According to a development analysis prepared by the Planning and Zoning Division, if each property is developed individually, the lot size limits the types of buildings allowed, which removes structured parking as an option on either site and creates a challenge for any developer to maximize the allowed density and meet the parking requirements. Both properties are zoned for mixed-use development.
Commissioner Beverly Perkins and now-former Commissioner Michael Sobel opposed the purchase of the property. Sobel questioned the viability of the City getting involved in developing the parcels.
“Why don’t we let a developer come in and pitch both properties instead of the taxpayers subsidizing and purchasing it?” Sobel asked.