Commissioner Kaufman To Hold Community Forum on Need for Field Space for Youth Sports and Recreation

Key West City Commissioner Sam Kaufman, District 2, will host a community meeting on Tuesday, September 5, 2017 at 5:30 P.M. at the Poinciana Elementary School cafeteria to discuss the need for more field space in Key West for youth sports. The status and proposals concerning Little Hamaca Park/Hawks Missile Site will be a topic for community members to address as well. Members of the City of Key West staff and leaders of various youth sports organizations are expected to attend.

A Facebook event has been created.

9 thoughts on “Commissioner Kaufman To Hold Community Forum on Need for Field Space for Youth Sports and Recreation

  1. “to discuss the need for more field space in Key West for youth sports.”

    Commissioner Kaufman is a good man and means well, and I say this even though we don’t always agree. But if Sam is looking for field space in Key West, he need look no farther than Gilleran Field down by the Truman Waterfront Park. KEEP that open space field instead of putting a building development and parking lot on it, and that is one less field you’ll have to look for or spend money on.

    1. Can you please post the most current plans for the Truman Waterfront field space? We attempted to go back and watch Mr. Bouqet’s engineering presentation from the August 21st meeting, however the live stream on the city’s site does not have volume.

      1. YRACofKW & All,

        If the City Commission approves the Bahama Village Redevelopment Advisory Board (BVRAC) recommendation, Gilleran Field will become a building development and parking lot area. The Truman Waterfront Park Master Plan currently has the PAL building being demolished and a new multi-purpose field going in there. In doing so, this will not only take away valuable Park open space, but it will also mean that the new rec field will be out-of-place, imo, and not even remotely as good of a location as Gilleran Field which contributes greatly to the quality of life of all now and would continue into the future.

        There will also be some open field space in the playground area which is on the other side of the Park in the vicinity of Building 103. Farther down there will be open space, but not field space although there will be some room to run around and throw a Frisbee or football.

        There will be open space across the street from the amphitheater, but its probably too narrow to be considered field space. A portion of that area before you get to the State Park roundabout will have a Key West fruit tree grove which has potential to be a nice addition.

        So, according to the Master Plan, open field space will be on the new recreation field where the PAL building is. But, since probably around January 2016 the Master Plan has been changed 9-10 times.

        Mr. Bouquet’s Building 103 presentation was a switch from what we thought it would be as all along the City Plan was to renovate it, especially because HARC considers it a historic building at least 50 years old. Meaning, they have previously said it must be renovated with the original design kept intact. I have been pushing for a re-design with arches, but they were against that because of their guidelines. Both Jim Bouquet and also Gary Volenec from Engineering now apparently believe that the building is not cost effective to be renovated as it is in really bad shape.

        I will email the IT department tomorrow and pass it on that the sound is not working on the Aug. 21 meeting.

      2. They are working on the sound problem of the 8/21 TWAB meeting, but so far no luck. Too bad, as we had a lot to say about this $35 million-$45 million or so Park Project.

    1. These Little Hamaca Park “suggestions” have been brought out into the open now to allow the public to weigh in both pro and con. You might be hearing something else about what could be done with the property in the near future.

      I sponsored an Agenda item at our Truman Waterfront Advisory Board meeting Aug.21 for the same reason – to make the public aware of possible plans for the Police Athletic League (PAL) building. The plan choices are: Demolish it; Renovate it; Downsize it and renovate it.

      At the same meeting, the City’s Director of Engineering, Jim Bouquet, gave a rundown about Building 103 on whether or not to renovate or demolish it. This was done to inform the Board and also to get the public involved.

      So far, not much input from the public on either the fate of the PAL building or Building 103, so if anyone cares now is the time to speak up – not when the bulldozers are there.

      1. The City of Key West assumed ownership of The Hawk Missile Site in 2002, 15 years ago. Since that time, the upland area of the site has been used for a paint ball park, an RC park and is currently be used to used to store old machinery, hundreds of recycle bins, playground equipment, mopeds, tires, chemicals and junk! We need green space for our children. My daughter practiced on the Gilleran field last week. There were two soccer teams and a football team practicing alongside a mens soccer game. That site does not have running water or sewer, rather one port-o-potty for everyone to share. According to the most current Truman Waterfront plans we’ve reviewed, the Gilleran field is listed as a “Development Site,” which means, once again, the children of Key West will lose field space! When will this ever end? Does the city know how many children participate in youth sports/recreation? When was the last time a capital project involving youth sports/recreation was placed in the city’s budget? How about the hockey rink floor? They’ve been patiently waiting for years to have their rink floor raised. Shade? Do you see shade at any city owned parks? My kids use the skate park and there was entire homeless camp living under the football storage trailers. The PAL basketball program lost their entire season last year because there was no place in the city to host their league. We want the city and the dais to care about our children. We are parents. We work, drop off and pick from school and activities, help with homework, cook dinner… We’re busy raising our children. We do not have time to sit at meetings. I encourage each member of your board and the dais to reach out to parents to get a better sense of the true needs of this community. Our children are not fairly represented in this community and that is nothing short of a tragedy.

        1. YRACofKW & All,

          Well, I’ve been trying to save Gilleran Field from development even before I was an Advisory Board member. I have spoken up, and now it’s up to others to step up now – or forever hold your peace. You need to sacrifice some time and attend Commissioner Kaufman’s Sept. 5 meeting if you really want to make a difference. Step up.

          Outside of that, the people to contact about your concerns are the Mayor, City Commissioners, City Manager and Asst, City Manager.

          1. Thank you for helping us understand the current status of the Truman Waterfront plans and thank you for advocating for green space. We’re trying our best to “speak up.” We’re hoping someone will listen for the sake of the children of this community. We plan to attend Commissioner Kaufman’s community forum on the 5th.

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