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Farmton was carefully planned


October 7, 2010

My firm was the planning consultant for the Farmton Local Plan. It was a remarkable professional experience that allowed for the creation of a 50-year plan with the most envirnomentally sustainable standards in the state.

But, as you suggested in your editorial on balancing private property rights, this plan was developed by working together with hundreds of people, including planning staffs from two counties and five state and local agencies, nationwide independent experts on environmental protection and green, sustainable planning, and many local stakeholders. For anyone to assert that all of these individuals were victims of a "spin machine" and had no ability for independent thought is absurd.

Sandra Walters' letter "Development isn't inevitable" is representative of a very small minority of the comments we received. It was my experience that, during the four years of review, Miami Corporation appreciated and respected all suggestions that led to the creation of a community vision for this land and for our future. However, it is difficult to consider the suggestions of those parties who would recommend that either the landowner subdivide the entire 94 square miles or forego use of its property.

Every public hearing, review, and workshop resulted in a recommendation by the majority of the participants, in some cases by a unanimous decision, to approve the Farmton Local Plan. This approval was because it was beneficial to the public and environment and far better than the existing comprehensive plan for the area. It would be nice if the letter writer respected these decisions and the vision of the majority and recognized the tremendous benefit that this plan will generate for the citizens of Voluisa and Brevard counties.

Ivey is president and founder of the Ivey Planning Group.