Century Village golf course decision: County leaders delay vote on 'Reflection Bay' land plans

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- A plan that has polarized residents in a large retirement community for more than a year will continue to polarize them a bit longer.
 
The Century Village community, along Haverhill Road and Okeechobee Boulevard, has engaged in heated discussions over what should be done to a 70-acre section of land that was a golf course. Today, much of it is overgrown.

A proposed development called "Reflection Bay" would become hundreds of homes, shops, offices and an assisted-living facility on the land.

Opponents say they want to keep green space and views, and believed the golf course would be in place forever. They are also concerned about an increase in noise, traffic and crime.

Supporters say the development would add jobs and improve the neighborhood, breathing new life into an area that has become rundown.  Some believe the addition would increase property values.

Palm Beach County commissioners were expected to vote Thursday. But after hours of discussions and testimony, the vote ended in a 3 to 3 deadlock.

"Shelly Vana (commissioner) was  missing today, she came in later. And of course she did not hear everything so we did not want her in the room. So that got another tie vote. They will not wear us down but they will not and we will end up in court if need be," said Jeanette Veglia who opposes the development.

 But Jean Dowling, who favors the development said, "We need this desperately, our area is going downhill. The place looks a mess it's getting more crime because of it. We have to go forward, we have to do something. Even if this fails, we still have to go forward and get development in that area."

About 300 Century Village residents attended the meeting.

Commissioners said they will meet again February 28th.

Ashleigh Walters contributed to this report.

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