Coral Gables


Letter: Greens are dying at Granada golf course


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To submit your letter, e-mail, or write Soapbox, c/o Neighbors, 3511 NW 91st Ave., Miami, FL 33172. Fax: 305-376-5287. Letters must address a specific LOCAL issue, and must be signed with a name, city or neighborhood, as well as a telephone number for verification purposes. Letters more than 350 words will not be accepted, and writers are limited to one letter every four weeks. Letters will run as space allows, and may be edited for length, style and clarity. The deadline for letters is noon Wednesday.

Coral Gables was recently recognized by the United Nations-backed International Awards for Livable Communities as one of the top-five cities in the world. Officials cited the Granada public golf course among the many rich quality-of-life features that make Coral Gables so unique.

Since George Merrick created the City Beautiful in 1923, Granada has been the Village Green; it is not just the heart, it is the very soul of Coral Gables, the jewel in the crown. Despite the magnificence of the stately homes that surround the Village Green, the democratic nature of the American civic tradition is evident wherever you look. The golfers are not wealthy elitists – they are regular Gables citizens and the people walking around the green represent a typical cross section of local residents.

Unfortunately a problem has arisen over the past several months: the greens are dying. Nobody is quite sure why. Conflicting theories abound. But city management is providing no answers and no management.

For a non-golfer, driving or jogging around the course, it has never looked lovelier. Shrubs have been clipped, mulch has been laid and it looks like a beautiful park. But for those who play golf it has become a disaster. The greens need to be replaced and then they need to be maintained professionally so this never happens again.

Unless the city devotes some managerial support, Florida’s oldest 9-hole course will not reach its centennial. The daily usage of this golf course measures the pulse and the health of this city. City officials have a duty to protect it. Unfortunately the few city officials who play golf prefer to use their membership at the Biltmore or the Riviera golf courses. Granada is just for the citizens.

The citizens deserve better. George Merrick deserves better. Coral Gables deserves better.

Patrick Alexander, Coral Gables

Help fight annexations and incorporations

I want to inform our community that Miami-Dade County commissioners will discuss various issues about incorporation and annexation at a meeting at 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 27 at County Hall, 111 NW First Ct. in Miami.

We need the entire community to attend this meeting and tell our commissioners that we don't want more layers of government and duplication of services, or more elected officials to pay huge salaries too, or more lobbyists, or more corruption, or more government interference in our daily lives.

If you want to save yourself from higher property taxes, higher insurance costs, higher fees, higher utility bills, specific-interest re-zoning and bigger government, please attend and tell the commissioners you don't want this. Bring friends, carpool or go with Metrorail, and join us in saying no to breaking up our area.

Remember: When has more government ever cost you less?

Jessica Carter, West Kendall

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