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Brickell

New city in south Broward

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http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/8321543.htm

Not that exciting,but here it is.

It's the unincorporated area between Miramar and Hallandale.

http://maps.yahoo.com/maps_result?zoomin=y..._y=0#mapcontent

South Broward areas to become new city

By STEVE HARRISON

[email protected]

TALLAHASSEE - Broward County's newest municipality will likely be West Park, a quilt of unincorporated areas tacked together by new legislation and years of conflict.

After having their dreams of incorporating thwarted by political fighting and backroom deals by lobbyists, the residents of Utopia, Miami Gardens, Carver Ranches and Lake Forest are on the verge of cityhood.

An incorporation bill cleared two House committees Wednesday morning, and with no opposition, the South Broward areas are likely become a unified destination.

Community leaders posed for celebratory photos after the vote. They even shook hands with representatives from Pembroke Park, the town that has long shunned them.

''We are so happy,'' said Yunsook Valladares, president of the Lake Forest Homeowners Association. ``We never wanted to join another city, except maybe Pembroke Park. We are happy with how this has turned out.''

Pembroke Park, a town of about 6,000 residents, long resisted merging with the roughly 13,000 residents of the four unincorporated communities. The mostly industrial Pembroke Park said it couldn't support the poorer unincorporated areas; critics said the town was resisting because it didn't want the minority residents annexation would bring.

Pembroke Park Commissioner Howard Clark didn't want to discuss the contentious history of the incorporation -- nor how much the town paid lobbyists to kill a merger.

''Everyone is a winner today,'' he said.

The city is tentatively called West Park, but that could change. Valladares said the permanent name could be decided by a contest.

The town would likely share Pembroke Park's Town Hall.

''People say this has been going on for six years, but to me it's been longer than that,'' said Carver Ranches activist Thomas Dorsett. ``I've been working on this since 1988.''

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Interesting, how many incorporated cities are there in Broward County now? Also, I thought Miami Gardens was already recently incorporated and was in Miami-Dade County.

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The city is tentatively called West Park, but that could change.

One would hope, how boring!

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Interesting article.

I agree, West Park in a boring name, but I certainly can't think of anything better! You should see the names I've made up for my Sim Cities....Talk about boring!

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Broward is pretty much all incorporated areas.

official map: http://gis.broward.org/maps/cities/pages/bcmuni24x24.htm

or the unincorporated areas: http://gis.broward.org/maps/unincorp/unincorp.htm

Miami Gardens is an incorporated city in Dade: http://www.miamigardens-fl.gov/

Official map: http://www.miamigardens-fl.gov/images/Map_CityWide.pdf

Claim to fame: The stadium formerly known as Joe Robbie is there.

I'm sure the broward neighborhood is related to the Miami city, if not just proximity then in demographic.

They're looking for an assistant city planner if anybody is interested.

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and because i'm bored at work today, here's a list of incorporated cities in Broward County:

Parkland

Coral Springs

Coconut Creek

Deerfield Beach

Hillsboro Beach

Lighthouse Point

Margate

Pompano Beach

Tamarac

North Lauderdale

Sea Ranch Lakes

Lauderdale-By-The-Sea

Oakland Park

Lauderdale Lakes

Lauderhill (aka Jamaica Hill)

Sunrise

Wilton Manors (big gay community)

Lazy Lake

Fort Lauderdale (biggest city)

Plantation

Weston (bleh)

Davie (cowboy country)

Dania Beach

Cooper City

Southwest Ranches

Pembroke Pines

Hollywood (nice place)

Dania Beach

Pembroke Park

West Park (new)

Miramar

Hallandale Beach (french canadians)

I really dislike Broward county, not just because it's boring and full of old people (not true in all cases of course) but because of what it represents. They great northern sprawling suburbs where schools are good and you won't be bothered by people that are different than you. That being said, they do have some good immigrant pockets, and a lot of the old jews moved there from Miami Beach. It's not all bad, but so easy to pick on.

Did I mention how boring it is?

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West Park gets a go-ahead

After years of nasty infighting, the Legislature comes up with a plan to give 13,000 under-served South Broward residents a town they can call their own.

BY STEVE HARRISON

[email protected]

TALLAHASSEE - Broward County, meet West Park. It's likely to become your newest city.

After having their dreams of incorporating thwarted by political fighting and backroom deals by lobbyists, the residents of Utopia, Miami Gardens, Carver Ranches and Lake Forest are on the verge of cityhood.

An incorporation bill cleared two House committees Wednesday, and with no opposition, the South Broward areas are likely to become a unified destination.

Community leaders posed for celebratory photos after the vote. They even shook hands with representatives from Pembroke Park, the town that has long shunned them.

''We are so happy,'' said Yunsook Valladares, president of the Lake Forest Homeowners Association. ``We never wanted to join another city, except maybe Pembroke Park. We are happy with how this has turned out.''

Pembroke Park, a town of about 6,000 residents, long resisted merging with the roughly 13,000 residents of the four unincorporated communities. The mostly industrial Pembroke Park said it couldn't support the poorer unincorporated areas. Critics said the town was resisting because it didn't want the minority residents that annexation would bring.

Pembroke Park Commissioner Howard Clark didn't want to discuss the contentious history of the incorporation -- nor how much the town paid lobbyists to kill a merger.

''Everyone is a winner today,'' he said.

The city is tentatively called West Park, but that could change. Valladares said a naming contest might decide the official name.

Residents will likely vote in November on whether to incorporate, which would be a formality. The city might not begin collecting taxes for two years, said State Rep. Ken Gottlieb, D-Hollywood, who pushed the bill.

Broward Sheriff Ken Jenne said Wednesday he hopes to continue county law enforcement and fire-rescue service in the area after incorporation, and would be open to negotiations with the new city leaders -- whomever they turn out to be.

''We would want to do that. Absolutely,'' Jenne said.

SW RANCHES MODEL

Valladares said the city would likely emulate Southwest Ranches, the last Broward municipality created. Southwest Ranches is a contract city with very few employees. Instead, it contracts with private firms for services such as planning and zoning.

The town would likely share Pembroke Park's Town Hall.

The county strongly supports the incorporation. It will hand off services such as garbage collection, code enforcement and parks to the city, county officials said.

''The county can't be a really efficient municipal service provider,'' said Marci Gelman, a Broward County assistant budget director.

The decision also moves the County Commission closer to its goal to have the entire county incorporated by 2005, said Cynthia Chambers, director of the office of urban planning and redevelopment. But other challenges are sure to surface.

SERVICE PROBLEMS

''I think the ultimate concern is that as the unincorporated areas shrink, providing services for those people will become more difficult for the county,'' Chambers said. About 20 square miles of unincorporated communities remain and they're scattered in about 30 areas, Chambers said.

The county invested $96 million in the area's infrastructure, to make it more attractive to potential suitors. Improvements to drainage, sidewalks, parks, roads and other services are almost completed.

''We're optimistic, looking at the numbers, that they can support themselves,'' Chambers said.

Broward County will assist the city's creation during a two-year transitional period. ''People say this has been going on for six years, but to me it's been longer than that,'' said Carver Ranches activist Thomas Dorsett. ``I've been working on this since 1988.''

Herald staff writers Samuel P. Nitze and Hector Florin contributed to this report.

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2000 census:

Fort Lauderdale 152,397

Hollywood 139,357

Pembroke Pines 137,427

Coral Springs 117,549

In the next 20 years or so, expect Miramar and Plantation to join the list. Maybe Pompano Beach might reach that level if a redevelopment boom occurs in the eastern cities as expected once the western suburbs are completely built out.

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A map of the municipalities in Broward County.

This shows only the eastern portion of the county (410 square miles) because the western part is Water Conservation Area (what's left of the Everglades), protected by the South Florida Water Management District.

"West Park" is the blue-striped, horseshoe-shaped area nudged between Miramar and Pembroke Park, in the southeastern part of the county. Its western boundary is US 441 (SR 7), northern boundary is Pembroke Road, southern boundary is County Line Road (NW 215th St on Miami-Dade County street grid) and the far eastern boundary is the Town of Pembroke Park.

browardmunicipalities20046ch.th.jpg

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Posted on Mon, Feb. 21, 2005

WEST PARK

New city nears first election

Broward's newest city will elect its first mayor and commissioners on March 8. The group will face a host of challenges from the first day.

BY KEVIN DEUTSCH

[email protected]

The city of West Park is like a blank slate.

It has no city hall. No welcome signs emblazoned with the city's name. No city departments.

But on March 8, West Park will take its first step toward shaping its identity as an official city when voters select a mayor and four city commissioners for the first time.

''They're starting fresh, and they have an awful lot of work ahead of them,'' said Kristine Judeikis, a community activist in West Park who is working on the campaign of commission candidate Hendrika ''Rikki'' Bowser. ``It's going to be tough for them.''

Indeed, West Park's first City Commission will have a full slate of important decisions to make.

First on their agenda: the name game.

Commissioners must decide whether to change the city's name or remain West Park, which was originally intended only as a placeholder on the city charter. The commission can organize a citywide straw vote for a new name, choose a new one themselves, or stick with West Park.

If a new name isn't selected by November 2006, West Park will become permanent.

Next up: number-crunching.

Early in their terms, city commissioners must begin working on West Park's first budget, which is expected to be tight due to the city's small tax base.

Created with voter approval on Nov. 2, the city has worked with Southwest Ranches Town Manager John Canada to create a tax and budget analysis. It indicates that West Park can continue paying for the same level of services residents now receive.

According to the study, West Park would need about $7 million a year to cover essential services, including police and fire rescue, legal, public works, parks, and salaries for city officials.

The city's tax rate is $5.62 for every $1,000 of a property's assessed value, but the commission will have the power to increase or decrease that amount.

West Park will be eligible to receive gas tax revenues in October and revenue from property taxes in January 2006, said attorney Keith Poliakoff, a pro-bono counsel to the city who hopes to become the official city attorney. Until revenue starts coming in, Broward County will continue paying for services West Park now receives.

Another challenge for commissioners will be dealing with the details of city government.

Early on, they must establish agreements with franchises, such as Florida Power & Light, to ensure that services are maintained.

They also must hire a city attorney, contract with a professional company to assist the city with administration, and come to an agreement with the Broward Sheriff's Office, which probably will continue providing police and fire services.

CONTRACT CITY

West Park will likely become a contract city with few employees, like Weston. It will probably contract with private firms for services such as planning and zoning, saving money in the process.

But before the commission can tackle any issues, it needs to find a place to meet.

In the past, community meetings have been at recreation centers or police or fire stations, but it's not clear if those spaces would be be able to permanently accommodate city commission meetings.

Laws require municipal governments to disclose their meeting place at least 24 hours before the event's scheduled time, and that location must be accessible to the disabled.

With so many issues to tackle, the candidates best suited to lead West Park should have a deep understanding of the community and a willingness to listen to constituents, said John Anderson, a professor at Nova Southeastern University Law Center who served in the U.S. House of Representatives and ran for president as an independent in 1980.

`DEEPLY COMMITTED'

''They have to be people who are deeply committed to the area, to the community, to their neighborhoods,'' said Anderson, 83. ``They need to be able to intimately associate themselves with the day-to-day lives of the people that make up the community.''

The first elected leaders in West Park should also be honest with residents and not exceed the limits of their power, Anderson said.

`GROWING-UP PERIOD'

''They have to level with the people that there's a growing-up period for a totally new community, where you literally have to feel your way and rely on good judgment of the innate sort, rather than rely on experience,'' Anderson said. ``They're breaking new ground, and they ought to tread very carefully.''

Town officials in Southwest Ranches, which incorporated in 2000, know all too well the challenges of starting a new government.

Gary Poliakoff, Southwest Ranches town attorney and father of Keith Poliakoff, said he, the Town Council, and Mayor Mecca Fink learned by experience -- on the job.

''The reality of the responsibilities of operating a municipality far exceeded anything that we anticipated,'' Poliakoff said. 'Every day of the week there are issues that come up that make you say, `I don't have a clue,' but that doesn't mean you can't get the answer and gain experience.''

THE CANDIDATES

The candidates for mayor of West Park are Eric H. Jones Jr., Joe Phillips and Marvin Price. The candidates for the four commission seats are Hendrika ''Rikki'' Bowser, Thomas W. Dorsett, Gwendolyn Sears deLepine, Laura A. Driver, Sharon Fyffe, Hipolita Little, Felicia Brunson, and Rita ''Peaches'' Mack.

The first commission meeting is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. March 10. The location will be announced when officials decide the best place.

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The new City of West Park recently held its first elections. The newly elected city commission also recently selected a new city manager to run the new municipality. While the new city gets off the ground, Broward County will continue to provide all municipal services, police and fire protection, solid waste collection, etc., until the city is able to complete the negotiation of its contracts.

West Park is expected to contract for its services through Broward County and its police and fire-rescue services through the Broward Sheriff's Office (BSO).

Broward County is also hosting the new city's temporary website as well.

City of West Park

Some other upcoming events for West Park include a referendum on the city's new name. Broward legislators used a temporary name of "West Park" (west of the Town of Pembroke Park) to get the special legislation passed to create the new city quickly. The Legislature wants what remains of Broward's unincorporated area (less than 5% of urban area) to be annexed into neighboring cities or to incorporate.

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