Government and Community Relations:
Trump Tower Condominium
Trump Tower Condominium Association retained The Merchant Strategy for government relations and community outreach services. Our objective was to oppose the proposed development of a 25 story building in downtown West Palm Beach along the Flagler waterfront, an area zoned for 5 stories max. The Merchant Strategy developed a strategic plan that enabled us to succeed in defeating a bad project. We collaborated with other concerned citizen and stakeholder groups, built and utilized social media, polled frequent voters city wide, used direct mail, lobbied government commissioners and organized the team effort to convince the editorial board to support our efforts. The Merchant Strategy defeated The Related Group effort to build a 25 story building in an area zoned for 5 stories, preserving the West Palm Beach waterfront. Voters in high numbers opposed this project and we won with a 3-2 vote.
Palm Beach Point Property Owners Association
Palm Beach Point Property Owners Association (PBPPOA) found that a developer intended to purchase adjacent property for large tract residential purposes and to build a 4,800 foot landing strip for airplanes and small jets. This wealthy equestrian neighborhood has extremely valuable horses, some of Olympic quality. The Merchant Strategy was retained to build a strategy to protect the PBPPOA resident’s quality of life. They had no objection to new residential developments but oppose the landing strip due to lack of compatibility; spooking the horses, potential midair collisions with nearby Aeroclub flight patterns, bird strikes over the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, noise and other safety issues. The Merchant Strategy organized residents and met with Village of Wellington staff and council. The Merchant Strategy built and maintained a Facebook page to keep all stakeholders informed. We met with the project applicant’s team and built a rapport with local reporters and media. This project had been sailing through all hurdles, as none of the impacted residents knew about it. Once TMS was retained, it went from full steam ahead to an abrupt halt. We are currently awaiting a mediation outcome and court determinations before celebrating a hard fought victory.
Boynton Beach Town Square Redevelopment
The Boynton Beach Town Square Redevelopment is a 16 acre site in downtown Boynton Beach, just east of the I-95 Boynton Beach Boulevard exit. The $250 million Town Square Redevelopment project is a public private partnership between the City of Boynton Beach and E2l Real Estate Solutions, LLC. Improvements include the renovation of a historic Boynton Beach High School into a cultural center, residential and retail spaces, a hotel, public spaces, a garage, fire station and a new city hall. Phase I included interior construction and roof rehabilitation of the vacant historic Boynton Beach High School and design plans for the new City facilities. The Merchant Strategy provided Public Involvement services for multiple public meetings, conducted a community Job Fair for the City and hosted a ground-breaking ceremony. The Merchant Strategy created and distributed newsletters, press releases, social media information and provided website updates.
- Boynton Beach Town Square Public Involvement Plan (Please note we have removed the resident addresses)
Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) I-95/SR-9 Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study
(FDOT Financial Project ID No 422681-1-22-01)
The Merchant Strategy created the Public Involvement Plan (PIP) for the I-95/SR-9 PD&E from south of South West High Meadows Avenue to north of Becker Road. The Merchant Strategy developed and implemented a plan to promote and deliver collateral materials, obtain the public’s input and provide ongoing status updates to designated Martin and St. Lucie County officials, property owners and all interested parties. During the design phase, The Merchant Strategy built stakeholder databases, developed and purchased advertisements, organized and held the Public Information and official Kick-Off meetings, recorded meeting minutes, and developed and maintained a project website. We performed the same deliverables for an Alternatives Public Workshop. In early 2013, The Merchant Strategy secured meetings for FDOT staff with elected officials to discuss the need for express lanes and noise walls. We worked with the FDOT to inform all stakeholders of decisions affecting the transportation safety, security, preservation and mobility needs impacting the study area.
Resurfacing and Widening of CR707/SE Beach Road from Palm Beach/Martin County Line to CR708
(FDOT Financial Project ID No 435139-1-52-01)
This Martin County MPO project called for the resurfacing and widening of CR-707/Beach Road, an off-system facility under Martin County's jurisdiction. The main goal of this project was to provide 10-foot travel lanes throughout the corridor, repair gaps in existing sidewalks within public right-of-way, and upgrade handicap ramps at all crossroads to current ADA standards. TMS provided a CAP outlining the FDOT planned efforts to engage and inform the public throughout the duration of the CR-707 project and kept the information updated as the project progressed. TMS notified the Town of Jupiter Island and Martin County, affected property owners and tenants, officials, various stakeholders and the general public of the project and its anticipated impacts while conveying the benefits. TMS fostered relationships with stakeholders, special interest groups and relevant community organizations. Newsletters, social media campaigns and brochures were part of the communications created and distributed to affected stakeholders, both locally and out of town.
Palm Beach County Collection System Rehabilitation Project
(Project ID No WUD 15-098)
The Palm Beach County Water Utilities Department started a project to improve the long-term operability and reliability of wastewater pipes. The CCTV contractor went into neighborhoods and used cameras to discover the condition of sanitary sewers. The Merchant Strategy created and mailed letters to the impacted residents. The Merchant Strategy designed a door hanger and delivered one to the door of approximately 6,000 homes with 11,000 individual meters/customers affected. The Merchant Strategy was the first point of contact for each household. We called and or attended meetings with the CCTV contractor to see which neighborhoods they would be in next to ensure that we were 4 to 5 days ahead of schedule affixing door hangers to the contractor’s activity.
All About You Conference for Women
This educational, empowering and entertaining event brought women from all avenues of business and community together to benefit local charities. Women and children charities Place of Hope and Burckle Place Transitional Home and Kid Sanctuary Campus received generous donations from attendees and sponsors. For three years, the conference featured a variety of speakers with sponsorship from Bridgestone Tires, The Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center, The Presser Law Firm, Jupiter and The Palm Beacher magazines, regional radio stations and more. Sessions were held on financial education and asset protection, techniques for body sculpting and reinventing your image, jewelry valuation, plastic surgery options and advances in stem cell therapy. Each year we raised significant funds for our charities and gave them through our non profit, Dixie Visions, Inc.