The City of Lake Worth owns 13 acres of submerged land in the Intracoastal Waterway that has been referred to as the Steinhardt property although the Steinhardts never owned it. They leased it from the City in 1967 and were given a 99 year lease in order to develop it. Steinhardt wanted to build five, 10 story condos on three man-made islands. The city even applied for the permits on his behalf in order to push it along. And although the developer crowd still exists in Lake Worth today, this is one project that didn't get off the ground...errr, water.
Nothing was done as they never could get the permits they desired. There was a lot of hassle from government agencies. So, back in 2011, former commissioner Suzanne Mulvehill met with Palm Beach County officials to see about a grant-funded nature center. She put the bug in their ear and that's what's on the table today.
In June 2012, the corporation finally gave up its lease and said it wanted the property to be used as a conservation area. It was anticipated that Palm Beach County Environmental Resources Management would restore and manage the property with us waiving all fees and keep it as a passive park. We will take care of Public Safety. Before anything is restored or constructed on the property, the County will submit plans and get approval from the City. The property will be opened to the public and the city will be responsible for the opening and closing of the preserve.
The $1 dollar a year, 99 year lease agreement provides that the upland
area will be reserved for future public amenities, including parking.
Nothing is said in the Lease about revenue that could be generated from parking (land is across from the beach property) or
The most ridiculous request and made a part of this proposed lease is that the Steinhardt family wants the property acknowledged with their name. They never owned it.
The suggestion is to call it Steinhardt Cove.
Now, on Tuesday night under New Business C, the city will present this latest scheme that has been obviously under discussion for quite some time. This has to be voted upon by the residents and the city/county has devised another plan by allowing this lease for the first ten years and then going out on a Referendum that they must do by City law for any lease of Public property that is more than 20 years. By that time, the citizenry will be used to the nature preserve and vote it in. Also, the voters might have more trust in the local government regarding elections in general.
Previous blog on this submerged property