From the Desk of Sarasota
City Manager Tom Barwin
March 8, 2019

This is an eagle eye view of Lido Beach showing where the emergency renourishment work has been completed and where restoration still needs to occur.   If you look closely, you can see the dredging equipment staged on the beach and a pipe, delivering the sand from the New Pass channel area, running from the Gulf of Mexico up onto the beach.  With the dredging machinery inoperable during high seas, Mother Nature has forced temporary shutdowns, including a few days this week when the cold front arrived.  The project is expected to wrap up in early April.  (Photo Courtesy:  APTIM)


  • Police Complaint Committee & IPAP Workshop
    Sat., March 9 - 8 a.m.
    SPD Headquarters - 2099 Adams Lane
  • Planning Board
    Wed., March 13 - 6 p.m.
    City Hall - Commission Chambers
  • Nuisance Abatement
    Thurs., March 14 - 6 p.m.
    City Hall - Commission Chambers
  • Special City Commission
    Sat., March 16 - 9 a.m.
    City Hall - Commission Chambers
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This Week's Items to Know:

New Recycling Carts -  Delivery Underway!    The Solid Waste Division began delivering the new large carts for residential single-stream recycling this week.  And it's quite an operation!
Crews are literally rolling out 15,000 new carts.  They have an efficient process with one team member assembling the wheels, while another verifies each address using a handheld electronic device, then places the cart curbside.  Take a look cruising along John Ringling Parkway: 
Recycling Cart Delivery 
Recycling cart delivery along John Ringling Parkway this week.

The plan is to deliver approximately 1,000 carts each work day.  So,  it should take most of the month of March to drop off the carts and get everyone ready for the new, user-friendly system to begin April 1.

Once you receive your new recycling cart, check it out.  The lid will help keep recyclables contained and the wheels will make it easier to, well, wheel the cart around.  And, there's a helpful diagram on the lid detailing what is and isn't recyclable.   
IMPORTANT:  Do not use your new cart until April 1.  Continue to use the old bins. Then, in April, place the old bins curbside (empty, please) and crews will pick them up and either recycle or re-purpose  them. If the new carts are filled and left curbside before April 1, they will not be emptied. The current contractor does not have the necessary equipment to lift the carts.   
Continue using the old recycling bins until April 1. 
Click here for answers to some Frequently Asked Questions (in English and Spanish).    
The response to the announcement of the single-stream recycling program and initial delivery of the carts has been overwhelmingly positive.  We anticipate the enthusiasm will result in increased recycling participation.  Please be careful, though, to ensure what you place in the new single-stream cart is recyclable.  Carts contaminated with non-recyclable items can wreak havoc with the sorting system and potentially injure a worker.   
The Bay: Public Meeting March 11   Our community has demonstrated a deep interest in The Bay project and the future of 53 acres of City-owned bayfront land. The next exciting step is the creation of The Bay Park Conservancy, the non-profit entity designed to partner with the City to help raise funds and implement the Bay Park Master Plan as depicted below.  

At 4 p.m. Monday, March, 11, the Bay Steering Committee will hold a public meeting at the Blue Pagoda Building, 655 N. Tamiami Trail, for a review of the latest draft of the proposed partnership agreement between the City and The Bay Park Conservancy. This is an opportunity for the public to learn more about this important document as the committee reviews each page before it ultimately comes before the City Commission for consideration in April. The draft can also be viewed here.

All of us who have been part of this incredible effort and community partnership are committed to transparency and public involvement as we lay the foundations for what will be a greatly improved, exceptional community park on Sarasota Bay.  
For questions or comments, please email me at Thomas.Barwin@SarasotaFL.Gov or contact Bill Waddill at
A rendering of The Bay Sarasota.
Traffic-Transit Forum - March 11   With seasonal traffic issues becoming a significant topic of conversation, we've been discussing the importance of diversifying our modes of transportation in Sarasota.  And, we're pleased to share that the Sarasota/Manatee Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is working on an Active Transportation Plan that includes walking, biking, and mass transit.   
The MPO is reviewing ideas on how to transform tomorrow and, thus, will host an open house, called Transforum: Neighborhoods - Bus, Bike, Walk on Mon., March 11 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at the Bayfront Community Center, 803 N. Tamiami Trail.  
They're identifying a system of existing and proposed biking and walking areas to connect to transit for the Sarasota/Manatee region -- and they want your input.  Residents are encouraged to attend and learn more about the planning process and offer feedback on the proposed projects. 
This is the kind of long-range transportation planning that is needed for Sarasota: incorporating and investing in alternative, sustainable modes of transportation to get around.
The Active Transportation Plan is part of the MPO's planning strategy for the next 25 years.  So, it's very important Sarasota residents are included.
And, the City is closely involved with this process.  The MPO is partnering with our relatively new Transportation Planning team to host the Transforum.   
For more information please contact Corrine Tucker with the MPO:  941-359-5772 or   

Orchestra Community Meeting: March 12   With a vision for the future, the Sarasota Orchestra will hold a community engagement meeting next Tuesday, March 12 to discuss its proposed plan to relocate to a portion of Payne Park.
As presented to the City Commission recently, the proposal calls for constructing a new Music Center where the clay tennis courts are now located and building new courts closer to the Payne Park Auditorium.  Parking would be shared at the nearby Sarasota County parking garage.
This will be the Orchestra's initial community engagement workshop.  The Orchestra's leadership as well as internationally renowned architectural design firm, HKS, will present the vision followed by a question and answer session.
WHEN:  Tues., March 12   6-8 p.m.
WHERE:  City Hall, Commission Chambers - 1565 First Street 
The meeting is open to the public.

More information on the proposal can be found at 

Downtown Farmers Market - Attendance Up   We're not imagining the popularity of the Farmers Market held each Saturday morning in the heart of downtown!  
A recent attendance count shows a remarkable 31 percent increase from the previous count five years ago.
On February 23, 2019 an estimated 16,340 people attended the market compared to the estimated count of 12,424 on February 1, 2014.  That's an increase of nearly 4,000 people. 
Farmers Market
File photo:  Downtown Farmers Market 
Extrapolating the numbers, the market drives approximately 800,000 visitors to our downtown per year.  Once downtown, many of those individuals stay for lunch at one of the many popular eateries and extend their shopping past the Farmers Market.  The count showed that the Market and Whole Foods continue to have a strong symbiotic relationship with customers.
The count was conducted by Phyllis and Roger Barry with Barry Consulting.  Phyllis earned a doctorate in Adult Learning and Development and Survey Research. Roger has a doctorate in Economic Geography and is an Emeritus Professor of Urban Planning.  The Barrys reside in the city limits, and we greatly appreciate their commitment to making Sarasota the best city it can be.   

Van Wezel:  Shows on Sale Now! 

To view the full Van Wezel season, visit 
The Sarasota Ballet 
Fri., March 8 - 7:30 p.m.
Sat., March 9 - 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
The Lion King 
Thurs., March 14 - Sun., March 31
Les Ballets Trockadero 
 de Monte Carlo will perform April 4.   
All 23 dates and tickets

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo
Thurs., April 4 - 7:30 p.m. 

RENT 20th Anniversary Tour
Tues., April 9 - 7:30 p.m. 
Wed., April 10 - 7:30 p.m. 
Peter Gros
Sun., April 14 - 2 p.m. 
The Music of Cream 
Mon., April 15 - 8 p.m. 
The Second City:  It's Not You. It's Me.
Tues., April 16 - 8 p.m. 
Menopause the Musical
Wed., April 17 - 7:30 p.m. 
Boz Scaggs - Out of The Blues Tour 2018 
Thurs., April 18 - 8 p.m.
Alan Cumming - Legal Immigrant 
Sat., April 20 - 8 p.m.

Rosanne Cash and Band 
Thurs., April 25 - 8 p.m.

The Temptations and The Four Tops 
Fri., April 26 - 8 p.m.

Whoopi Goldberg 
Sat., April 27 - 8 p.m.
Catch The Illusionists
April 30.

Lee Greenwood and Crystal Gayle 
Sun., April 28 - 7 p.m.
The Illusionists 
Tues., April 30 - 7:30 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

Thanks for reading this week's edition.  If you'd like to receive Weekly Briefs directly to your inbox, click 'Join Our Mailing List ' below or send us an email at CityNews@SarasotaFL.Gov 

Tom Barwin
City Manager