Q: In light of school starting on Aug. 15, will the roadway improvements on Greenland Road be completed by then?
A: That’s certainly the goal. It seems to be all but finished [as of interview date of July 19] and I fully expect it to be operational before school is in session. This is a big resurfacing, rather than full repaving, project that represents a $1.2 million investment. The repaving is scheduled to be from Old St. Augustine Road eastward to Coastal Lane on Greenland Road. 

Q: It looks like there is some activity at the old KMart. Do you know of anything happening there?
A: I’ve had lots of questions about this. Don’t be fooled — unfortunately, what you see is just to discourage vagrancy around the property. When I followed up with Ash Properties, I told them it just made an eyesore worse. Apparently, there is no active interest in the redevelopment of that property at this time. I’ve reached out to Ash Properties many times about this property to see if we can assist in marketing the property in any way and I’ve had no response from them.

Q: What is happening at the First Christian Church property on San Jose Boulevard?
A: There is a proposal for a 140- foot pine tree camouflaged cell tower to be located on the site. The three signs you see on the property pertain to this proposal: a waiver of landscaping, a waiver of setback from a residential dwelling and the 140-foot cell tower. The two waivers must be heard and approved by the Tower Review Committee before the cell tower application can be heard by the Planning Commission.

Q: What has your focus been on the City Council lately?
A: July started a new year for the council and I’m honored to have been named the chair of the Rules Committee and chair of the Neighborhoods, Community Services, Public Health and Safety Committee.

Also, I requested and received permission from Council President Freeman to form an ad hoc committee, the Critical Quality of Life Issues Committee, which will focus on health care access, homelessness, and affordable housing. It will be structured with three sub committees, each chaired by a council member, who will each recruit and actively engage subject matter experts in their area. For each issue, we will focus on 1) the need in the community; 2) what resources are currently used to address the issue (public/private/non profit sectors); and 3) what best practices we can review and possibly adopt in the future from other communities. By the fiscal mid-year, we hope to make recommendations to the Council.

Q: Do you have an update on the Ferngully Preserve situation?

A: I’m feeling very positive about the prospect of expanding this preserve by the 4.5 acre tract. The Mandarin community committed more than $36,000 for the project. I believe this good faith effort, along with support by the Parks and Rec Department and the North Florida Land Trust, all but assures we can get this done. 

Q: What is the best way for our readers to contact you?
A: Community members can email me at MBoylan@coj.net or call (904) 255-5206.

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