"This looks like something got messed up somewhere and instead of resolving it …."

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The Spruce Creek @ Port Orange

From: “Crews, Katherine E.” <Katherine.Crews@Edgewell.com>
Date: July 23, 2015 at 9:57:42 AM EDT
To: “sstiltner@port-orange.org” <sstiltner@port-orange.org>, “dbastian@port-orange.org” <dbastian@port-orange.org>
Cc: “kdonahue@port-orange.org” <kdonahue@port-orange.org>, “Lovallo, Susan (slovallo@port-orange.org)” <slovallo@port-orange.org>, “‘kcrews2007@gmail.com'” <kcrews2007@gmail.com>
Subject: Russell property Kayak launch
Reply-To: “kcrews2007@gmail.com” <kcrews2007@gmail.com>
Dear Mr. Stiltner and Mr. Bastian:
I am writing you to help clarify and resolve the issue I’ve discovered with the property above. Mr. Stiltner is the councilman for my home district. Mr. Bastian is the councilman for the property in question.
My husband and friend ran across a lovely spot on Spruce Creek to launch a kayak / Paddleboard or canoe. They knew I had been looking for a spot in this area (besides Cracker Creek that charges $5 to launch your own kayak) so they brought it to my attention. This is a hard to get to area on this beautiful area of the creek without either a long paddle or access to a private neighborhood launch. They found a canoe launch marked with a lovely sign that this property is for public use marked Russell property dated 2005.
Since they came across it by boat I needed to do some investigation to find where by land to launch. My investigation discovered more than just the location. I found that the former owner of the property put in his will that it should be a public kayak launch site. The city had obtained a $700,000 state grant had been given to purchase the property and an additional $300,000 grant to upgrade the property. When I went to the location in the Sanctuary neighborhood I found a locked gate to the launch area and could see only city vehicles parked inside the gates.
I’m frustrated a million dollars of state tax money was on this property and no one can’t get to it except by water!!! If I’m already on the water I don’t need a launch or dock. I and other paddlers can’t use it this public land as intended. We now have a million dollar barely used city parking lot that is not available to the general public. It’s been 10 years since purchased to work out any legal issues if there are any and nothing has been resolved. This looks like something got messed up somewhere and instead of resolving it, it was just swept under the rug. I think the public deserves to know of this waste of our money for property that is NOT available to the public. Please tell me your take what happened here and will or can be done? I really would like to use this launch site and think other outdoor enthusiasts would like to use it too.
Kathy Crews
699 Lone Oak Drive
Port Orange, FL 32127

6 thoughts on “"This looks like something got messed up somewhere and instead of resolving it …."

  • July 23, 2015 at 9:03 pm

    Lucy, you got some splaining to do!

  • July 23, 2015 at 11:22 pm

    I think this link to the city website can shed some light on the dock to nowhere. Can anyone verify if the dock was indeed constructed. This event occurred only within the last 3 years. It has to be on someone’s radar. I would love to take my boy fishing there if we bought and paid for it. We can’t fish or launch at the end of Spruce Creek Rd. I was chased off from there with a stern warning.This could be the public’s access point. We do own it don’t we? Let’s take a kid fishin!

  • July 24, 2015 at 7:39 am

    I am very sensitive to the public having access points to our water and natural lands. I bugs me that the city owns the land at spruce creek but at the behest of a hand full of people have not gone through the relatively easy and inexpensive steps to create a small passive park there. This is akin to giving the public owned land to the neighbors, which is what they want, and seem to have great power over the interests of the common people.
    Even the pocket parks established on Riverside drive over utility and drainage sites have no allowable parking the one that did is now fenced making it impractical at the suggestion of the neighbors.
    Newton White

    • July 24, 2015 at 9:55 am

      This whole adventure on a little piece of land adjoining Spruce Creek seems so bizarre to me. At the most, only 12 cars will be able to park there. Being an eternal suspcisious skeptic I wonder if something else is being planned in conjunction with the Bonks Landing small parcel. We already have a dock to no where built on Spruce Creek, and an anonymous donor to keep up the Gamble place. The city of Port Orange usually gets things done, surreptiously. I don’t know what is in the works but I would bet it is more than just about 12 people being allowed to kayak on Spruce Creek.

  • July 25, 2015 at 10:22 am

    You are correct about the parking. Beyond trespassing I was informed that it was illegal to park on the right of way. I was well off of the dirt road in the weeds. There are several small launch areas south of Port Orange on the east side of the Northbound lanes of U.S.1. They are well used on a first come first serve basis. Self policed and not any obvious littering at these locations. They are NOT maintained and simply used by outdoor enthusiasts. Most of whom are very respectable to the environment they enjoy. A dozen parking spots even with the limitation of no trailers at the end of Spruce Creek Rd would be a blessing. Cut the cable to the entrance and leave a trash container. It would overcrowd initially but would level out after time. Seniors would learn that weekdays would be a non crowded time and suit their needs. Again most outdoor enthusiasts are very respectable to the lovely environment they enjoy so much. No investment required. A primitive launch site for canoes and kayaks. There is definitely some big brother political basis regulating this location. Drive the subdivisions of Port Orange and dozens of cars are parked on the right of ways blocking sidewalks all the time. Nothing is done about that. Park down there and watch how fast an officer shows up to run you off.

    • July 25, 2015 at 5:37 pm

      This was discussed numerous times in the past. I believe it is in the County not the City even though the City owns the piece of property bought for drainge. Bonks Landing resident are County residents not City residents and was against this being bought by the City in the first place in 2009. Go to YOUTUBE and look for Henry Springers vidoes just type in Bonks Landing.


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