Westchase Town Center owner requests community assistance
Twenty-six voting members attended the November VM meeting, which was conducted via Zoom. Shawn Yesner, president of the Westchase Community Association, called the meeting to order. After approving the minutes of the July meeting, which was the last regular meeting, Yesner gave the floor to Eric Holt, chairman of the Committee on Governmental Affairs. Holt Real Property Specialists, Inc. (RPS), the company that owns and manages Westchase Town Center.
The center is home to Tijuana Flats, Burger 21 and Chipotle. Holt then introduces Alan Charron, president and owner of RPS, and Vanessa Silva, who serves as the center’s property manager.
Caron explained that he developed the Westchase Town Center to serve as the social hub of the Westchase community. There is about three acres of green space between Maloney and Fifth Third Bank that was supposed to be used for events, and Charron said he feels the space is underutilized.
He hopes to get a local resident to volunteer to organize more events that will benefit the entire community. The RPS is based in Orlando, which makes it difficult for their staff to be as practical as Charon wishes, he said. He wanted to reach Westchase residents directly, which prompted him to attend the VM meeting.
“Apart from doing charity or fundraising activities, we have also thought of putting up some pickleball courts there. I was thinking of sprucing it up with some artificial turf. Maybe put a putting green there,” Charan said. “There are opportunistic things that can happen there. Along with Vanessa, our Property Manager, you can help us collaborate and coordinate to do more with what we’ve got.
Yesner noted that Westchage used that green space to celebrate his 30th birthday in May, and the event had a very good turnout and was generally quite successful. He said he planned to suggest to the board that the birthday celebration become an annual event.
Charron said the community needs a promoter or event coordinator willing to work with local individuals and organizations to coordinate quarterly, monthly or weekly events. There is currently no fee to use the space, Charon continued, and the goal is not for RPS to bring in more money. Parking and electricity is already available for any potential event.
“We have such a beautiful plaza,” Charron said. “We want to be the first thought and get the word out so that we are in people’s heads when they are thinking of where to hold their events.”
Yesner then gave the floor to Holt, who told VM that he was seeking to chair the volunteers and join a new notification committee. The WCA has a relatively new website, which can be found at westchasewca.com. Residents can visit the website to sign up for community notifications via email and/or text.
“We have this great brand-new website and now one of the things we’ve got to take advantage of is the ability for people to sign up for information from the association. Unfortunately, although we have this great potential, there hasn’t been much discussion about how to best utilize it,” Holt said. “The board felt the most appropriate entity to manage this would be the VM.”
Holt told the VMs that they did not need to respond immediately, but to reach out to them to express their interest in chairing or serving on the committee.
The WCA board voted to move its monthly meetings from 7 p.m. to 6 p.m., and Yesner asked the VMs if they wanted to consider making the same change. Linda Pisano, representing Savile Row, proposed moving the monthly meetings from 7pm to 6pm, however no one supported the motion so it failed.
Don Brown from The Enclave, then Nancy Sales from Harbor Links/The Estates, seconded the motion to move the meetings to 6:30 p.m. The motion passed, with 20 VMs voting in favor and six VMs voting against.
Yesner then reminded the VMs that there would be no December meeting, and that the January meeting would be held in person. The meeting was adjourned at 7:41 p.m.
by Lynn Gonzalez
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