Un-Developing Abandoned Housing Developments

A stalled and abandoned development along the Florida coast is being scouted by the Trust for Public Land as a possible site for "un-development" -- a return to its natural state as open space.
April 17, 2009, 7am PDT | Nate Berg
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"These two men have big plans for the Georgetown property, 160 acres on the southwest side of the Tampa peninsula. But they are not planning to build."

"Chelius is state director for the Trust for Public Land. Size is from the nonprofit's St. Petersburg office. Because of the steep decline in property values here, they believe they have a chance to help local government purchase and preserve this stretch of waterfront. A few months ago, it was slated to be covered with luxury condominiums, "mansion" town houses and single-family homes."

"Instead, Chelius and Size spoke about the native plants that could be restored -- the sabal palmetto palm, the seagrape trees, the three native species of mangrove. With the vegetation would come more native animals, more birds."

"'We're sort of like the un-developers right now,' Chelius said, smiling."

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Published on Thursday, April 16, 2009 in Los Angeles Times
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