By Agrippina Fadel
Tamarac’s building boom might soon have a downside, as Commissioner Elvin Villalobos warns that the city’s capacity for new apartment complexes is like an overstuffed suitcase — that’s getting too full to close.
Warning the strain on city services and the need for a more proactive approach to planning, Villalobos plans (or is expected) to propose a temporary moratorium on new construction at Wednesday’s Tamarac City Commission meeting.
The call for action comes as plans for a new 278-unit apartment complex on 7951 W. Commercial Blvd. at the former Cheddar’s location is being considered, on top of several other major residential developments in the area.
“I want to bring attention to this matter because we keep building, but we are not thinking about the future. We are not letting the existing developments get finished, so we don’t have a chance to reevaluate if the city has the capacity for another apartment complex,” Villalobos said.
He added that future city commission and Tamarac residents would have to deal with the consequences of today’s decisions. He feels Tamarac needs time to catch up and approach city planning proactively.
“I hope my colleagues agree to put a temporary moratorium on new projects tomorrow. You can’t keep shoving things in a suitcase and still expect it to close: the city’s capacity for new residents, traffic, and services is not limitless,” Villalobos said.
According to the city, current developments include 50 multi-family townhouses in Woodmont, 335 single-family homes in Woodlands, 212 multi-family apartment units under construction at Eden West, another 120 at Legacy, five single-family homes at Tamarac Circle, and 152 homes at the Enclaves.
Advantis Tamarac, a development being considered at the former Cheddar’s location on Commercial Blvd., has a plan for 278 multi-family apartment units. Currently, they are waiting on the planning board’s okay.
Mainlands 10 resident and retired property management business owner Steve Culotta did his math. Between all the current and proposed developments in Tamarac and another new project in Lauderhill on the south side of Commercial Blvd next to Chick-fil-A, the area will have 1528 new apartments in a span of 1.4 miles.
“It’s time to stop and look at what all the new building is doing to increase traffic and overcrowding. The city commission needs to stop the apartment project at the Cheddar’s location and place a moratorium on all new apartments,” Culotta said, adding that Commercial Blvd and University Drive intersection is already dangerous, and increased traffic will certainly make it worse.
The city commission meeting starts at 7 p.m. at Tamarac City Hall, 7525 NW 88th Ave.
- Agrippina Fadel grew up in Siberia and received her master's in journalism from Tyumen State University. Agrippina is also a writer and editor at Draftsy.net. She has been a US resident for over ten years and speaks English and Russian.
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