World's largest swimming lesson


Courtesy to the Alligator

Alachua County commissioners are reaching out to the public to find creative ways to use the space where the McConnell YMCA once stood.

The 212-acre lot is just south of Paynes Prairie in Micanopy on Southeast 134 Avenue, said Mark Sexton, the county’s communications and legislative affairs director. Profit, nonprofit, governmental organizations and individuals are welcome to submit ideas.

All ideas regarding how the property should be used and managed must be received by the County Purchasing Department by 2 p.m. on Feb. 14, Sexton said. People who are interested in seeing the property can come to an open house at 10 a.m. on Jan. 26.

“The commission reached out to citizens, so this could be an inclusive project,” he said.

The county purchased the land for about $1.03 million during an auction in July, Sexton said.

No award will be given for the idea chosen, Sexton said. The statements of interest will be used to help decide whether the county should retain ownership of the property.

The commission has already received about a dozen statements from citizens with ideas, Sexton said.

Julia Salt, a 20-year-old sustainability studies senior, said she would be in favor of using the space in an environmentally friendly way.

“The more land that is kept natural and cleaner, the healthier the community would be,” she said.