Building Boom

Sarasota is a town on the cusp of becoming a city. And there’s a building boom going on downtown — mostly hotels and high-end condominiums. One, ironically named “The Vue,” blocks some of the view of Sarasota Bay as it crowds in just a few feet from two of the busiest streets in town in a very pedestrian-unfriendly way.

This surge of new construction dwarfs the older “historic” parts of downtown. Of course, change and growth can add vitality and diversity to a community, helping it become a city. On the other hand, too much of one thing can put a community out of balance and sap its strength.

Many of these new buildings will be filled with wealthy older residents looking for a low-key but upscale lifestyle. Nothing wrong with that — unless, of course, they put up a metaphorical wall around downtown to keep out others who are different. In that case, this new growth will suffocate rather than vitalize, and the town will become not a city, but a slightly more dense area of the sprawl that is so much of Florida.

Which will it be for Sarasota? The jury is out.

A View of the Vue at Sarasota Bay

A View of the Vue at Sarasota Bay

Bricking up the View at the Vue

Bricking up the View at the Vue

A Piece of Sky - The Vue at Sarasota Bay

A Piece of Sky

More Next to the Palm Avenue Garage

More Next to the Garage

Feeling the Squeeze

Feeling the Squeeze

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