A New Perspective 11-04-04: Golden Gate Master Plan

Golden Gate Gazette

November 4, 2004

Golden Gate cleared some major hurdles this past week. The Collier County Commissioners just approved the final round of changes to the Golden Gate Master Plan.
After surveying the residents and putting in three years of committee work, the plan includes new commercial activity centers opening at some main intersections in the Golden Gate Estates.
The uses for commercial will be light, opening the doors for some conveniences that will make it so people won’t have to drive all the way into town to get goods and services. A vast majority of the Estates population desired this.
The Estates commercial centers will have landscape and design criteria and set backs from the road way with well thought-out access and egress that should resolve some problems that occur at commercial intersections in Naples, where they get backed up with traffic.
In the Golden Gate City area, the surveys showed that residents have an even stronger desire to have a more intense commercial availability. They want more shopping and restaurants. They don’t want to have to fight the traffic to run into town.
The number one desire expressed in this survey was that residents want to feel safe while shopping and be able to walk to areas without having to drive.
New commercial opportunities will exist along Golden Gate Parkway from the intersection of Sunshine Boulevard to Collier Boulevard on Golden Gate Parkway on the north, and from the BP (formerly Mobil Station) to the Golf Course on the south.
There is work in progress to come up with a way to mix the existing residential areas with the new commercial. There have been a few community meetings of individuals living in the affected area to come up with ideas on how to proceed so that everyone is satisfied with the plan.
This group will come up with what is called an overlay to the Golden Gate Master Plan that will set criteria as to what should be allowed in the area and to what standards. When the work gets further along, the citizens will be shown the final plans and have the opportunity to make improvements before the plans are submitted for commission for final approval.
The rich cultural diversity of this area opens some doors to ideas such as a mini “Epcot Center” right in Golden Gate, using the talents and knowledge of the local residents to provide unique entertainment, dining, and retail sales that offer a sample of culture to the larger community.
Pricing probably won’t be as expensive as Naples, so this area could become a draw to an expanded commercial base.
Have you noticed; nearly everywhere you drive in the community, things are basically looking better (give or take a few abandoned shopping carts). Even brighter days can be ahead if we all remain a part of the process. After it gets started, we can further the success by spending our money with the new stores.