A Mansion Planned for 733 Bay Esplanade
By Anne McKay Garris
It's going to be elegant. It's going to be expensively built. It's going to be, well, very large by North Clearwater Beach standards. Thirty feet high, on "flood plain elevated property", spread out approximately 120 feet across two lots, the home planned for 733 Bay Esplanade will be something to behold.
Proposed plans, now being evaluated by Clearwater's Planning Department, show a building, mostly within the standard setbacks. If built according to present plans the house itself will be set back 25 feet from the front property line on Bay Esplanade, but a portion of the garage and a covered entry porch will extend an additional 10 feet. The 5-foot setback on the side property line is observed, and the building is set well away from Clearwater Bay at the back of the property, leaving, as the owner notes, "will benefit neighbors' water views."
On the north property line, however, where the standard setback is 25 feet from the right-of-way of Iris Street, the plan calls for a second garage entirely within the setback, which, along with the other garage, would allow for the sheltering of four vehicles on the property.
Because all of these variances from the standard setback requirements call for a decision that "the redevelopment of the parcel is otherwise impractical without deviations from the intensity and development standards," the property owner responds, "The expense of the desirable, premium waterfront lot lends development to larger area and footprint houses. We would rather push the home closer to front and corner setbacks and preserve more waterfront yard. This will benefit neighbors water views as well," he adds.
Notified by the City of this development proposal, a number of neighbors have enquired about the details and two have written to suggest changes, especially to the added garage, which would be between the waterfront view and the landside of the property.
So far the Planning staff has made no decisions. The staff is meeting today, August 5, at 11:00 a.m. to discuss the plan, and the decision to approve, approve with conditions, or disapprove will be made by the Planning Director. Unless his decision is appealed, this plan will not need to go before the Community Development Board, made up of volunteer experts in the building or real estate fields, who would hold a hearing on the project.
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