By Hank McCoy
Coastal Community Church is hoping to expand the size of its Parkland parish due to the growth the church has seen since it made its home off of University Drive.
On July 23, the city of Parkland’s Planning and Zoning Board will listen to public comments, ask questions about the building/traffic study, and hear new information about the proposed expansion of the Coastal Community Church.
One of those planning to make a public comment at Thursday’s meeting is Parkland Ranches resident Heather Meaney.
“What I am concerned about, is so much building square footage density on such little acreage, and what this precedent sets for future development,” Meaney said.
As part of the church expansion, they’re looking to develop a larger worship space, add office space, and production spaces for broadcasting services at the 6800 North University Drive location.
The current building is one story and takes up 16,486 square feet. The expansion would add over 30,000 additional square feet, which includes a second story, bringing the height of the church building to 48 feet when the architectural tower is added.
According to the development services staff report, the area of land was initially planned for 60,000 square feet of religious institution use and 10,000 square feet of daycare use in April of 2017. With the proposed phase of expansion, it would bring the church under that 60,000 mark.
“I do wonder if the community would have taken more notice in 2017 when this was going through planning if they knew that a 47,000 square foot building was going to be put in that spot,” Meaney explained.
The plans also call for two parking areas to be added to accommodate the influx of parishioners totaling 257 new parking spaces, plus seven new accessible parking spots for those with disabilities.
“I am in no way mitigating the good works the church has done and what it means to its congregation,” Meaney said, “I’m just thinking of the future and of what University Drive will look like and what the residents in Parkland Golf & Country Club and The Ranches will have to live with.”
The staff report recommends approval for the petition put forth by the Coastal Community Church with some conditions and the board will make their decision at the meeting whether or not to give their recommendation to the city commission.
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- Hank McCoy is a writer and journalist covering music, politics, and culture on his blog Hank's Luncheonette, as well as currently working on publishing his first novel. Hank grew up in Parkland and graduated from FAU before moving to Chicago where he worked in the music industry as an artist and talent booker when he wasn't throwing people out of punk bars. Hank recently moved back to South Florida after living overseas in Berlin while he traveled to Europe and worked on a new fantasy series. Hank digs music, comic books, history, and politics.
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