Conserve Bobby Jones Now!

We, the undersigned, hereby declare our support to preserve and protect the Bobby Jones Municipal Golf Course under a Conservation Easement in perpetuity as a combination of Golf and recreational park space and nature trails.

Each of us is in opposition to any portion of the land at Bobby Jones being sold and/or used for development of any kind. This is a significant risk if Bobby Jones is not conserved forever, as there is tremendous pressure to develop every inch of land in our city.

In accordance with the city’s comprehensive plan, we support the protection of wildlife habitat, the restoration of wetlands to create more habitat and clean our water run off (as supported by a grant from SWFWMD), and the creation of park that supports the concepts of equity, inclusion, and full access by residents. The state, city and county all support cost effective means for managing storm water and protecting our bay and Gulf from the ravages of red tide. The restored wetlands portion of the Bobby Jones conservation project would meet this objective. Furthermore, the green space with old growth trees would act like a lung for our city in cleaning the air and processing carbon dioxide from increased traffic.

Such park space protected for future generations would meet diverse needs in the community, be compatible with the neighborhood needs, and provide wholesome recreation for families. Such green space in the city will be an integral part of a recreation corridor in the north part of the city, connecting to the Legacy Trail Extension, and North east to Benderson park. The Golf portion of the protected land will support the value of historic preservation of golf in our area.

Research indicates a significant reduction in obesity and increased longevity when living within a five minute walk to green space. The Conservation Easement at Bobby Jones would also provide for a reliable destination for birding and passive recreation for generations to come.

We urge the City of Sarasota, as trustees of this community park space, to heed this Petition, and keep their covenant with the people of Sarasota in protecting Bobby Jones under a Conservation Easement through the Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast. In signing here we are unequivocal that anything less than a Conservation Easement at Bobby Jones—e.g. selling a portion of the land for development and/or simply maintaining this land as a regular park—will not be sufficient, and will be deemed a breaking of the covenant between residents and the city of Sarasota.

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