MELBOURNE BEACH – Melbourne Beach residents will soon have the opportunity to weigh in on environmental infrastructure projects that are to be planned and installed in their town while also gaining insight into some of the municipality’s recent and ongoing sustainability efforts.
Town officials will host a Green Infrastructure Workshop from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 10 at the Melbourne Beach Community Center, 509 Ocean Ave., Melbourne Beach.
This is the second public workshop held as part of a project funded by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to help the town create a feasibility plan focused on increasing its sustainability efforts, Town Manager Elizabeth Mascaro noted.
The feasibility plan, which is being developed in collaboration with the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council (ECFRPC), will aim to increase green space for bikes and walking, reduce stormwater runoff into the Indian River Lagoon and mitigate sea level rise as much as possible, Ms. Mascaro pointed out.
Featuring speakers and a Q&A session, the main purpose of the workshop is to gain feedback from residents on selecting and prioritizing projects.
“This meeting is an opportunity for the residents to express their concerns and ideas on how the Town can improve our environmental viability now and for future generations,” Ms. Mascaro said.
But another key part of the workshop is that it will reveal the results of a planning council study that assessed infrastructure within communities similar to Melbourne Beach as a way to better inform the town’s own projects.
“Through the grant, ECFRPC looks at three coastal communities that are similar to Melbourne Beach who have green infrastructure, sustainability and [sea] level increase plans,” Ms. Mascaro explained.
“The workshop will cover what the ECFRPC has found through their study and the results from the first workshop,” Ms. Mascaro added, noting that the first project workshop was in December. “That workshop was a walk through the town with experts from several local agencies looking for opportunities for the Town to implement.
“I am most excited to hear what recommendations the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council will present for pedestrian walkways,” Ms. Mascaro said. “The Town has very limited open space for development. I am hopeful ECFRPC will provide some nuggets on how the Town can maximize our green space.”
Both the feasibility plan and another plan, a Green Infrastructure Adaptation Plan, will be used to enhance or supplement the town’s already existing sustainability plan, Ms. Mascaro noted.
The workshop feedback will contribute to the Green Infrastructure Adaptation Plan, which will analyze the types of structures and structural techniques that would be most effectively applied in the town.
To learn more about the Green Infrastructure Workshop, visit www.melbournebeachfl.org/home/news/green-infrastructure-projects-melbourne-beach.