Estero Community Planning Panel
Public Meeting # 65
July 11, 2005
Marsh Landing Clubhouse, Estero, Florida
Panel Members Present
Neal Noethlich, Chairman; Don Eslick, Estero Council of Community Leaders; Greg Toth, Estero Development Community; Mike Cato, Estero Fire & Rescue; Thomas M. Beard, San Carlos Fire & Rescue, Carl A, Barraco, Estero Chamber of Commerce, Dan DeLisi, Estero Development Community, Jack Lienesch, Estero Civic Association. Treasurer: Frann Wagner, Estero Civic Association. Recording Secretary: Bill Brown, ECCL.
Noethlich called the meeting to order at 6:00 PM.
Fifty-two participants were present including about 35 members of the general public. Brown reported that public notices of the meeting were published in the Fort Myers News-Press and the Bonita Banner. Notices were posted on the Internet in the Estero Development Report and on the Website of Estero Fire Rescue. A paid advertising notice of the meeting was placed in the Bonita Banner of July 6. Notices of the meeting were posted in the South County Regional Library, the Wachovia and Colonial Banks and the Estero office of Realty World.
Approval of Minutes
for June 13, 2005 Meeting
Toth pointed out that discussion of Estero 4.2 did not make clear the concern that there was not specific provision for property access and entitlement for the requested commercial space. The Minutes were approved.
DeLisi reported that a meeting was scheduled with the County for August 11th to work out the remaining issues. Noethlich indicated he would attempt to get this meeting moved up so that results could be considered at the August 8th meeting of the Planning Panel. Eslick suggested that the Panel should attempt to get additional county funding to develop a more comprehensive plan including such things as non-commercial areas, affordable housing, landscaping and mixed use or to update the current plan. Noethlich indicated that he has written the Smart Growth Director, Wayne Daltry, on mixed use and it may be on the agenda for the next Smart Growth meeting. Noethlich raised the issue as to whether our present vision is big enough, whether we are doing all we can. He said that the American Institute of Architects has developed a program to help communities develop its vision. He requested and received authorization to purchase copies of the AIA’s visioning publication for the Panel members.
Charles Basinet presented a proposal to rezone the old fire station site, north of Broadway on US 41, from public to commercial and combine it with the existing manufactured homes sales area in the front. The Panel had strong reservations about the 7 deviations that were requested since they undercut the Estero Plans basic provisions on setbacks and landscaping. The Panel was especially opposed to permitting these deviations to apply to uses other than manufactured homes sales since they should not be necessary for the long list of other possible uses. The need for continuing three entrances off of US 41 was also questioned. Basinet indicated they would explore how the deviations could be applied only to the existed use, possible elimination of one of the entrances, eliminate some of the uses and more creative landscaping and buffering along US 41.
Mini-storage in Front of Marsh Landing and Fountain Lakes-Halfway Creek CPD
Bob Thinnes of Q Grady Minor and Associates, P.A. introduced Wayne Arnold, Director of Planning with that firm and the developers – Bob Soudan and Rick Hielscher. They explained that the wetlands in front of Marsh Landing will remain as wetlands and the two proposed buildings will be on the Fountain Lakes end to the north. The 3 story self-storage building will not look like a normal self storage, but more like an office building. In will be the same as the high end storage facilities they have built in Naples. Parking is the only deviation that will be requested since this kind of facility does not require much parking. Toth suggested that in the interest of the Fountain Lakes residents behind it, it would be desirable to limit the rear building to one story. The developers indicated that the uses of that building were uncertain and they will come back when they have something more concrete. They also indicated that they would give up the US 41 entrance to the property if they could be assured entrance through the Fountain Lakes entry road . The entire area will be in the CPD, thus adding some protection to the preserve area and the southern area from future development. They also hope to be able to improve the drainage.
on the East Side of Three Oaks and RPD/CPD on the southwest Corner of Corkscrew and Three Oaks
Jon Hagen of Banks engineering presented a proposal by ASCOT Development for 376 residential units on a 47 acre lot on the southwest corner of Corkscrew and Three Oaks including 13.4 acres of commercial development. Toth pointed out that the proposed density would far exceed Lee County’s regulation of 6 units per acre. The response was that the high density is needed to support the smaller, non-big-box stores, that are planned for the commercial area. Toth also questioned the proposal to provide a 25 foot setback from the Estero River that instead of the 50 foot that is more commonly proposed. Samuel Marshall, project manager for Banks Engineering replied that the project would meet standards for protecting the Estero River – that the river is viewed as a big selling point for the residents. Noethlich indicated that while he is concerned about density he was inclined to be flexible if that was what was needed to avoid a big box and get small shops. The residential was proposed as two and three story buildings.
Greg Toth reported on plans to expand their proposed mixed use project by adding two five acres properties to the west of the 36 acre corner property.
Noethlich reported that Jim Mudd should complete his survey on residents’ desires on the Estero Planning District boundary. Hopefully he will recommend continuing to include Breckenridge, The Vines, Belle Lago, and the other properties east of US 41 in the Estero Community Planning Area., excluding only the Pine Road area.. He also proposed further exploration of possible ECPP/EDRC joint awards program for distinctive developments.
PANEL ADJOURNED AT 9:10 P.M.
NEXT PANEL MEETING August 8th AT 6:00 P.M. AT MARSH LANDING