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SRQ DAILY Jan 14, 2020

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" I wanted to rethink what happens on that dock and what else you can do out there, really pack it with programming, allow visitors to stay for multiple hours with always something to do."

- Michael Stevenson, USF Architecture Student

[Architecture]  USF School of Architecture + Community Design Students Revision Marina Jack Waterfront
Brittany Mattie, brittany.mattie@srqme.com

Any visitors passing through Sarasota City Hall yesterday afternoon would have noticed the main entrance and lobby taken over with varying 3D-printed models and multi-material architectural site plans, representing a recognizable Downtown Sarasota landmark. Beyond the showcase of intricate physical renderings, the afternoon consisted of presentations from thirteen graduate students from the University of South Florida’s School of Architecture + Community Design. Each presented a diverse set of final proposals for the redesign of Sarasota’s waterfront at Marina Jack—a project commissioned by Steven Cover, Director of Planning for the City of Sarasota. The students worked under the tutelage and professional expertise of firm principal, Michael Halflants of Halflants + Pichette, a modern design-build studio with offices in Sarasota and Tampa. “I immensely enjoyed working with them,” he says, showing pride in the enterprising talent shown in the final projects. 

The designs envision replacing all of the surface parking on the waterfront with structured parking on the east side of Bayfront Drive. The thirteen individual site plans varied among students’ concerns, interests and skills. While some proposed recreational amenities such as a Mote Marine satellite aquarium, elevated bike/running trails, watersport and bike rental shops, integrating mangroves for kayaking and fishing, adding tennis courts, a revamped children’s playground and inground swimming pool, others focused on hospitality amenities, such as community picnic areas/dining halls, open food courts, art galleries, conference/event spaces, outdoor music venues and urban bungalows. Meanwhile, many of the young architects mindfully honed in on environmental concerns such as avoiding flooding and storm-surge rises, implementing sustainable build practices to any added structures in terms of airflow and lighting, protecting the present green-scape, not disrupting the natural assets already in place, working around the constant flow of traffic of Tamiami Trail and not obstructing the high-rise views of downtown buildings overlooking the Bay. 

“In terms of the existing Marina Jack, students selected in their schemes to either keep the building, transform it or completely replace it,” explains Haflants, after introducing General Manager Greg Corvelle to the audience. Corvelle, present for all thirteen presentations, remained actively engaged in each students’ proposal as they described how to evolve or adapt the dock and restaurant into their reinvented site plans. 

“In a cursory visit to Marina Jack, I really thought the food was fantastic, but I personally can’t afford a yacht, or spend an entire day out there,” Michael Stevenson, USF Masters architecture student quips to Corvelle. “So, I wanted to rethink what happens on that dock and capitalize on what else you can do out there—really pack it with programming, allow visitors to stay for multiple hours with always something to do.” Conceptualizing his animated project into what he dubbed, “The Island,” Steveson shared his vision while also addressing the lack of parking. “It’s really unsightly and not the most efficient use of space,” he says. “It could be a lot more activated, rather than just parking lots taking up valuable space.” By elevating pathways and adding a perforated bridge connection, at a max height of 18-feet, he expanded the park’s greenspace and connected the entire waterfront. Steveson also increased the square-footage of Marina Jack’s restaurant—transforming it into a multi-functional venue, including “three levels of fanciness, if you will,” he says. Different areas for dining incorporated an upscale wine bar upstairs, a casual bistro and an ice cream/coffee shop with open seating. Corvelle nodded, intrigued. The future of Bayfront Park and Marina Jack looks bright in the eyes of the next generation of architects. 

The students’ work is currently still on display, and open to the public, on City Hall’s ground floor. 

Photo by Wyatt Kostygan.

[GoodBite]  Element Hosts Sips & Fromage Event
Brittany Mattie, brittany.mattie@srqme.com

Tomorrow night only, Element Modern Mediterranean Grill is hosting Sips & Fromage. The evening takes place 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm, with an extravagant, "completely over-the-top charcuterie board, with cheese and wine pairing stations," shares Lauren DiTaranto of American Dreams Restaurant Group. Treat yourself out tonight to mingle and snack at your leisure with a delightfully-paired selection of artisanal cheeses and meats, as well as sommelier-selected vinos. Element's Sommelier will be present for the special event to share her extensive wine knowledge in a fun, interactive and intimate gathering. 

Tickets are $40 per person, which includes an array of charcuterie and wine tastings, and must be purchased ahead of time. Call to make a reservation 941-724-8585.  

Photo courtesy of Element: Modern Mediterranean Grill, 1413 Main St., Sarasota.

Sips & Fromage event details.

[Education]  District Maintains Strong Graduation Rate for 2018-19

The Florida Department of Education reported that the graduation rate for Sarasota County Schools for 2018-19 was 89.4 percent. The district remained well above the state graduation rate of 86.9 percent. Federal regulations require each state to calculate a four-year adjusted cohort graduation rate, which includes standard diplomas but excludes general equivalency diplomas, known as GEDs, both regular and adult; and special diplomas. The U.S. Department of Education adopted this calculation method to develop uniform, accurate and comparable graduation rates across all states. The Federal Uniform Graduation rate is currently used in Florida’s school accountability system in the high school grades calculation. The graduation rate is calculated by tracking the number of students who start in a school as ninth graders to the number in the same class who graduate four years later. 

[Staff Announcement ]  Michelle Armstrong Joins RE/MAX Alliance Group

Michelle R. Armstrong has joined RE/MAX Alliance Group as a Realtor in the Bradenton office. She formerly worked with a predecessor of RE/MAX Alliance Group before moving to South Carolina, where she was also a RE/MAX agent. With 23 years of real estate experience, Armstrong brings excellent negotiation skills, an extensive knowledge of the market, and a passion for helping people. She is a Graduate of the Realtor Institute (GRI) and a member of the 100% Club recognizing outstanding performance. The Bradenton office is located at 3007 Manatee Avenue West. Armstrong can be reached at 941-713-8294 or MichelleArmstrong123@yahoo.com.    

[Transportation ]  SRQ Airport Traffic Growth Continues With 58% Increase in December

Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) passenger traffic set an all-time record for one month in the history of the airport with 228,015 passengers traveling through the airport in December.  Traffic for December 2019 was up 58% over December of 2018. Passenger numbers for calendar year 2019 were up 43% over calendar year 2018 with almost 2 million (1,966,950 actual) passengers using the airport. “The airport continues to make improvements to our facility in order to prepare for future growth with passenger convenience and customer service as our top priorities. We anticipate another year of record-breaking growth and want to thank the community for supporting SRQ” said Rick Piccolo, President, CEO of the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport. 

[Health & Wellness]  Florida Named Best State to Retire by WalletHub

With 26 percent of all non retired adults having no retirement savings or pension, the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its report on 2020’s Best States to Retire as well as accompanying videos. To help retirees find a safe, enjoyable and wallet-friendly place to call home, WalletHub compared the 50 states across 47 key metrics. The data set ranges from adjusted cost of living, weather, to quality of public hospitals. Florida took the number one spot, followed by Colorado in second, and New Hampshire third. 

To view the full report and other state's rank, click here.

[Staff Announcement ]  Brooke Chase Associates Recruits Todd Green as Field Technical Service Representative Mid-Atlantic for Charlotte Pipe

Joseph McElmeel, Chairman and CEO of executive search firm Brooke Chase Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce the successful recruitment by its Executive Recruiter, Richard Miller of Todd Green as Field Technical Service Representative Mid-Atlantic for Charlotte Pipe. As the Field Technical Service Representative Mid-Atlantic, Todd will be responsible for driving and supporting sales through commercial and residential project specifications, with a primary focus on the top mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineering firms.  This will include creating and attaining aggressive annual and quarterly objectives. Todd will identify performance gaps in product knowledge, effective specifier calls or product complaint procedure and provide training to correct those gaps. With extensive experience in Business Development and Sales Management, Todd most recently held the position of Senior Business Development Manager with Apollo Valves. 

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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