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El Portal’s preservation is on group’s agenda

By Rodolfo Roman
Special to The Miami Herald
A group of residents and village officials have teamed up to preserve El Portal.

The Village Council recently created the architecture, landscape and environmental committee, which will take a role in preserving and promoting El Portal.

Kim Flowers, a seven-year resident, suggested the concept to Vice-Mayor Harold Mathis Jr. The idea was well received by the council.

The committee met for the first time in March.

“During the campaign, many residents wanted to be more involved,” Mathis, who is chairman of the code enforcement committee, wrote in an e-mail. “We discussed various and issues and realized that we as a village were not using our residential resources.”

It was only fitting the committee would be created, said Flowers, an architect.

“I was feeling frustrated by dropping property values and a deep desire for El Portal to regain some of its beauty,” she wrote in an e-mail. “We have a wealth of natural resources in our village, very little crime and a wonderfully diverse population. I felt there was a need for the village to encourage its residents to maintain our assets & beautify our surroundings.”

The group is made up of five residents, Mathis and Village Manager Jason Walker. It meets at 3 p.m. every other Friday at Village Hall.

Here are some of the issues it will be taking up:

Reviewing plans for new construction.

Protecting historical structures in the village.

Educating residents on conservation methods.

Reviewing landscaping plans and paint colors for structures.

Reviewing ordinances and variance requests.

“This movement has garnered issues on the wish list,” he wrote. “But with the residents playing a more active role in the process, the overall vision is clearer and attainable.”

Call 305-795-7880 for more information on the group.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/05/12/2210622/el-portals-preservation-is-on.html#ixzz1M8qXHUWG

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