Bay Tree Club crosswalk advocates achieve their goal

By Rachel Brown Hackney

Photo credit Margi Ryder

   Regular readers will recall that in April, residents of the Bay Tree Club on South Midnight Pass Road talked about their years-long endeavor to convince Sarasota County staff of the need for a crosswalk between the two sections of their complex — the building on the Intracoastal Waterway side and the structures across the road, facing the public beach.

   County staff repeatedly had turned them down, for a variety of reasons.

   Yet, the two leaders of the initiative — Libby Sloan and Margi Ryder — were not about to give up. They were able to enlist the assistance of Gene Kusekoski, president of the Siesta Key Association (SKA), in bringing their concerns to the attention of County Commissioner Alan Maio.

   At last, their hard work has proven fruitful.

   During the June 7 SKA meeting, Kusekoski told the audience that, “after three long years, the ladies have won their case …”

   On June 11, Ryder reported to Kusekoski via email: “The County is digging out the area for the crosswalk today and they tell me the concrete will be poured tomorrow.”

   When they first learned of the decision from county staff, in early May, Sloan let us know how thrilled they were. She wanted to hold off on an announcement, however, until she and Ryder saw the work actually getting underway, just out of an abundance of caution.

   Ryder attached photos to illustrate that county staff, indeed, was following through with construction.