From the Desk of Sarasota
City Manager Tom Barwin
July 14, 2017
Immediately after the Fourth of July festivities, staging began for a significant utility improvement project in downtown.  An aging force main, which carries approximately 1/3 of the City's sewage flow from downtown and the barrier islands to the wastewater treatment plant on 12th Street, is being replaced.  When completed, the new pipe will be larger with more capacity and increased reliability.  Phase I will include temporary street closures along Cocoanut Ave. from Gulf Stream north to 4th Street through mid-November.  For updated information on street closures, please visit 


  • City Commission
    Mon., July 17 - 2:30 p.m. & 6 p.m.
    City Hall - Commission Chambers
  • St. Armands BID
    Tues., July 18 -  8:30 a.m.
    City Hall Annex - SRQ Media Studio

  • Development Review Committee
    Wed., July 19 - 9 a.m.
    City Hall - Room 112

  • Community Workshop
    Thurs., July 20 - 5:30 p.m.
    City Hall - Room 112
City Career Opportunities
Opportunity, Just Ahead Green Road Sign with Copy Room Over The Dramatic Clouds and Sky.
Control System Tech I
Crew Leader I - Solid Waste Division
Landscape Maintenance Tech II
Lifeguard I
Maintenance Mechanic II
Maintenance Technician III
Manager, Redevelopment
    Police Officer, 2nd Class
Rec Attendant (Children's Fountain)
Rec Attendant (RLTCC)
Refuse Driver and Refuse Operator    

This Week's Items to Know:

Osprey Ave. - Reopening!   As of 4 p.m. today (July 14), Osprey Avenue east of the Hudson Bayou will be completely open to all traffic once again: vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists! 

The road has been closed at the Hudson Bayou since last August while specialized contractors conducted two crucial microtunnels for the Lift Station 87 project.  With that phase of the project successfully completed, Osprey Ave. will remain open until December 2019.

Reopening Osprey Ave. is a significant milestone and soon construction on the new Lift Station 87 building in Luke Wood Park will begin. 

We remain in litigation with AECOM, the original Engineer of Record for the project, over what we believe were critical design errors and implementation that could have been catastrophic if the City had not halted the project until it could be re-designed.

Thanks again to all, especially those in the surrounding neighborhoods, who have endured this road closure.

Orange Ave./Hillview St. - Closed July 17-26    With this being the  slower time for traffic in the city and with the reopening of Osprey Ave., staff has planned utility work at the intersection of Orange Ave. and
The Orange Ave./Hillview St. intersection will be temporarily closed July 17-26.

Hillview St. 

This work will require a full intersection closure July 17-26, while new concrete traffic signal poles are installed and a sanitary sewer line rehabilitated.

Crews will continue working in the area July 27-August 11 with partial road closures as new sidewalks and curbs are installed as well as new traffic signals.

These are also important infrastructure upgrades.  While there will be some unavoidable inconveniences with the closures, staff will do their best to keep it to a minimum.  

If you have any questions, please contact the project manager, Georges Nicolas: 941-365-2200 ext. 6367

Federal Building - State Grant   We're pleased to announce we've been awarded a significant historic preservation grant from the State of Florida to help cover improvements to the City owned historic Federal Building, located at Orange Ave. and Ringling Blvd.

The City will receive a $297,000 grant from the Florida Division of Historical Resources and the City will provide a match of approximately $148,000.  In total, $445,000 will be invested in the building, constructed in 1934 as part of President Roosevelt's WPA job creation program. 

Originally a U.S. Post Office, the Federal Building has been on the National Register of  Historic Places since 1984 and is an architectural gem in downtown.

The City was awarded a state historic preservation grant for
improvements to the Federal Building.

The grant will fund hardening the building with removable protective hurricane screens for 63 windows.  Also, a new variable air volume box will be installed to provide improved air cooling, the balustrades will be restored, and the building exterior will be cleaned.

87 applications were considered by the state for possible funding and just 16 were approved, including the Federal Building.  That's great news for our community and this significant Sarasota landmark! 

Congratulations to the City's grant writer, Laura Wittenbauer, who did the heavy lifting submitting the application.  She also helped land a $500,000 historic preservation grant last year for renovations to the Municipal Auditorium and Bayfront Community Center.  Without these significant state grants, it would be a financial challenge for the City  to renovate and preserve these stunning historic landmarks.  

Vintage Fair - July 15 & 16    For those who enjoy vintage items, we invite you to the Vintage Fair at the Municipal Auditorium Sat. & Sun. July 15 & 16.  This is one of the few times each year that the Municipal Auditorium staff hosts a community event without a commercial promoter, so the proceeds from the booth rentals go back into the historic auditorium operations.

The fair will feature antiques, vintage clothing, jewelry, books and artwork.  50+ exhibitors are expected!

Admission is $3 per adult -- and the ticket is good both Saturday and Sunday.  Children 12 & under are free.

Saturday:  10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sunday:  10 a.m. - 4 p.m.                

Van Wezel:  Shows on Sale Now! 

The following is a list of shows through Dec. 2017.  To view the entire Van Wezel season visit 

Friday Fest: Kettle of Fish
Fri., July 21 - 5 p.m.
FREE Concert

Friday Fest:  Jah Movement Reggae Band
Fri., August 25 - 5 p.m.
FREE Concert

Tony Bennett
Fri., September 8 - 8 p.m.

Friday Fest:  Reverend Barry & the Funktastic Soul
Fri., September 15 - 5 p.m.
FREE Concert

Doo Wop Spectacular 
Sat., November 4 - 7:30 p.m.
Tony Bennett will be at the Van Wezel Sept. 8.


Celtic Thunder
Wed., November 15 - 7:30 p.m.

Straight No Chaser
Thurs., November 16 - 8 p.m.

Moscow Ballet Great Russian Nutcracker
Fri., Dec. 29 - 3 p.m. & 7 p.m.

To purchase tickets over the phone call 941-953-3368 or stop by the Box Office at 777 N.Tamiami Trail. 

For a complete schedule of events, visit

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Tom Barwin
City Manager