Scientology leader meets one-on-one with city officials over key downtown Clearwater parcel - 2016-07-06
CLEARWATER — Scientology leader David Miscavige has met one-on-one with each City Council member to discuss a key piece of waterfront land — the first gesture of its kind in the decades-long struggle between the Church of Scientology and the city over downtown real estate.
In hourlong meetings held Friday and Wednesday at City Hall, Miscavige updated council members on the organization's activities around the world and emphasized its interest in three parcels on the southwest corner of Pierce Street and Osceola Avenue. Together they form a vacant, grassy lot owned by the Clearwater Marine Aquarium.
The city, however, also has its eye on the property, having hired consultants to include it in a master plan currently under way to help revitalize the downtown waterfront. The 1.4-acre lot, now used for overflow parking, sits between City Hall on the north and the church's 13-story Oak Cove religious retreat on the south.