Home Depot Update
It is almost 3 years
since Coconut Grove neighbors united in a grassroots effort to stop
and ultimately scale back the Home Depot project.
Through the difficult struggle, much has been accomplished:
- the size of
the store has been scaled back nearly 50%
- the canopy trees
on the property have been saved
- the grocery store
Depot planned to take over the entire Grove Gate Shopping Center with
a 133,000 sq. ft. "big orange box" and eliminate the grocery
They then designed
a 125,000 sq. ft. two-story building with a multi-level parking garage
with plans to remove over 100 trees on the site.
They were finally
forced to retrofit the K-Mart store which has minimally impacted the
Grove as far as traffic and truck deliveries.
These are the tangible results acheived through the efforts of The
Grove First, the Coconut Grove Village Council, and the community
at large. Marc Sarnoff, former Chairman of the Village Council and now
Commissioner in District 2, Sue McConnell, and Mel Meinhardt were visible
leaders in the effort from the start. We showed our strength and unity
through the Council and homeowner groups which supported our neighbors
living adjacent to the property. Most importantly, we have shown passion
and steadfast determination to preserve the quality of life that makes
the Grove so special.
A lawsuit was filed
by three Grove residents against the City and (ultimately Home Depot
joined in as a party) for not following its own laws in requiring Home
Depot to apply for a Class II special permit, giving proper notice to
the residents, and for allowing a C2 industrial warehouse in a C1 light
commercial zoning district. The lawsuit has since been settled.