Courtesy of the Miami Herald
Posted July 31, 2005
KENDALL -- East Kendall
residents mingled with government officials Thursday night at a
gathering hosted by the Kings Creek South Condo Association.
Board members from several neighboring
communities got acquainted with officials and chatted about their vision
for East Kendall development.
Guests included Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos
Alvarez, state Reps. Juan-Carlos Planas and Julio Robaina and Miami-Dade
Commissioner Carlos Gimenez. Jose Valdes, chairman of the Kendall
Community Council, and council member Carla Savola also attended.
Residents avoided getting into specifics
about particular projects.
They asked about broader issues,
including traffic, high-density development and school overcrowding.
''The East Kendall area is acquiring a
personality of its own,'' said Alfredo Manrara, president of the Kings
Residents from numerous nearby condos and
neighborhoods were also present, including Kendall Glenn, Village of
Kings Creek, Continental Park, Kingston Square, Snapper Creek Park,
Kendall Point and Tara.
Manrara said several homeowner groups
have formed a ''loose coalition'' and are meeting weekly to organize
their opposition against Dadeland Breezes, a proposed development that
would nearly double the density of an apartment complex just west of the
Palmetto Expressway on Kendall Drive.
The mayor congratulated the communities
for their unity.
''Ultimately what you want to do is
create a coalition of homeowner associations, and that is extremely
important because of the power that it will give you,'' Alvarez said.
Gimenez, too, said he would do his best
to address the residents' concerns.
Another major focus was the new board of
directors for the Kings Creek South Condo Association, who were elected
after a lengthy recall of the former board. ''We thought they were not
exercising their obligations to oversee the management of the
community,'' Manrara said, adding the old board was meeting ''very few
times'' a year. ''This is a new beginning for Kings Creek South,'' he
After the meeting, guests joined about
100 residents of Kings Creek South in a celebration of their 25th
anniversary as a condominium. The complex was created in 1970 as
apartments and went condo 10 years later. The mayor cut a cake that was
decorated like a map of the Kings Creek South buildings.
Manrara recognized the Village of Kings
Creek community, which went through a similar recall about five years
ago and encouraged Kings Creek South to do the same.
He also thanked Robaina for mentoring
them throughout the process.
''I didn't do this, you did,'' Robaina
said. "All I did was basically tell you how to go about it. Recalls
are not easy, but it is what will set you free.''
Manrara said Alvarez and Gimenez offered
to hold a town meeting to get a better understanding of the issues
facing East Kendall residents.