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The Villages
Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Windmill and water tower at Brownwood will be demolished this month

The Project Wide Advisory Committee on Monday unanimously agreed to allocate up to $20,000 for the demolition of the decorative windmill and water tower at Brownwood Paddock Square.

However, PWAC members were not ready to commit to the reconstruction of the cosmetic structures which could bring the cost of the overall project to $225,000.

The two structures will be demolished overnight May 19. They must come down prior to the June 1 start of Hurricane Season. The rotting wood has threatened the stability of the decade-old structures and they have been deemed a safety hazard.

The structures were originally built with pine wood. The rebuild, if approved, would be pressure-treated wood.

PWAC members were ready to move ahead with the demolition out of concern for safety. However, they were hesitant about committing to the rebuild of the windmill and water tower which have no useful purpose.

“We should take care of the safety issue and we have to make a decision if it’s just for aesthetics. I don’t agree with spending something that’s just for aesthetics. This money will be coming out of the residents’ pocket,” said PWAC member Jerry Vicenti, who also serves as chairman of the Community Development District 7 Board of Supervisors.

The windmill and water tower at Brownwood Paddock will be demolished prior to the start of Hurricane Season
The windmill and water tower at Brownwood Paddock Square will be demolished prior to the start of Hurricane Season.

PWAC members chafed at the notion that The Villages Design Division has already chosen the materials to be used for the reconstruction. The division, headed by Tracy Morse, made the decision about the windmill and water tower prior to the issue coming before PWAC.

“So the Developer already made the decision, even though they don’t ‘own’ the property? I have a problem with that,” said PWAC Chairman Don Wiley.

Steve Bova, who serves as vice chairman of the Community Development District 10 Board of Supervisors, went to the podium to ask about the ownership of Brownwood Paddock Square.

The wood is obviously rotting at the base of windmill
The wood is obviously rotting at the base of the windmill.

District Manager Kenny Blocker indicated that the square is owned by the Brownwood Community Development District. Bova pointed out the Brownwood board is filled with the Developer’s appointees and pays a much smaller allocation into PWAC. In fact, Bova noted that the annual amount paid by the Brownwood Community Development District would not cover the $225,000 proposed windmill and water tower demolition and reconstruction project. He also questioned why the Developer isn’t paying any rent for use of the Dog Trot Porch stage or the drink huts.

“These are things that are there to benefit the Developer. We shouldn’t be forced into replacing something we don’t think needs to be replaced,” Bova said.

Do you think PWAC should pay an additional $200,000 to rebuild the windmill and water tower at Brownwood. Share your thoughts in a Letter to the Editor at [email protected]

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