Estero Community Planning Panel
Minutes of Public Meeting #86 - March 12. 2007
Estero Community Park, Estero, Florida
Panel Members Present: Neal Noethlich, Chairman; Don Eslick, Estero Council
of Community Leaders; Greg Toth , Estero Development Community, Jack Lienesch,
Estero Civic Association, Lin Welch, Estero Chamber of Commerce, Dan DeLisi,
Estero Development Community. Recording Secretary: Jim Ramsburg, ECCL,
Treasurer: Fran Wagner, ECA.
Noethlich called the meeting to order at 6:04.
Public Participation: Forty participants were present including 32 members of
the general public. Ramsburg reported that public notices of the meeting
were published in the Fort Myers News-Press, the Bonita Daily News and the
Bonita Banner. Notices were posted on the Internet in the Estero
Development Report and on the Web sites of the ECCL/ECPP/ECA/EDRC and Estero
Fire Rescue. A paid advertising notice of the meeting was placed in the
Bonita Banner of March 7th. Notices of the meeting were posted in the
South Regional Library, Colonial Bank, Estero Community Park and Realty World of
Wagner reported a March 12th balance of $5,119.44 in the Community Planning
Panel account on deposit at Colonial Bank in Estero. Eslick: Motion to accept DeLisi:
Second. Report accepted unanimously.
Noethlich distributed minutes of the February meeting. Toth: Motion to
accept minutes. Eslick: Second. Report accepted unanimously.
Courtesy Presentation - Estero On The River:
Attorney Chuck Basinait of Henderson, Franklin, Starnes & Holt, P.A., and
Project Manager Cherie Akers of Wilson-Miller appeared to update the Community
on their plans and to present the response to items raised by Lee County staff
concerning the 85-acre mixed use
development proposed for the northeast corner of US 41 and Corkscrew Road.
The proposal calls for a maximum of 530 residential units - including 181 bonus
density units - and 300,000 square-feet of commercial & office space including
the new 500-seat Gulfshore Playhouse.
A memo e-mailed to Panel members earlier by Alvin (Chip) Block, Principal
Planner for the zoning division of the Lee County Dept of Community Development,
stated that the county staff and developer were working together to resolve any
remaining issues which could stall its approval. Block identified and
outlined ten specific areas of concern. Basinait expressed confidence that
planners had addressed and resolved these concerns.
Akers introduced eight Wilson-Miller staff members attending to answer any
specific questions from the Panel or general public and distributed a 12-page
booklet of design elements proposed for the project. She outlined the
project and noted that a number of residential units would be located in
vertical true mixed use structures, above first floor commercial tenants.
She added that walkways would give the public access to the Estero River, not
Akers and Basinait outlined the developer’s responses to the issues of concern
which would: Limit perimeter building height adjacent to Corkscrew Road, US 41,
Sandy Lane and Highland Avenue; Re-design parking lots not to face US 41;
Request deviations to proceed with true mixed use development; Provide for
current and future public transportation stops; Provide increased landscaping
for the corner of US 41 and Corkscrew Road; Provide greater architectural detail
planned for the development’s buildings; Reserve a corridor within the site for
the potential realignment of Sandy Lane; Make any revisions necessary to comply
with 2008 flood plain and floodway map revisions; Preserve any historical
structures on the site; Restore the quality and public accessibility of the
Estero River, and, Build on-site 10% of the site’s total residential units as
moderately priced housing units and also contribute up to $2,068,649.00 to the
Lee County Affordable Housing Trust Fund.
Eslick said he looks forward to more specificity in the plans to obtain his full
support. Toth questioned the pedestrian accessibility to some areas within the
development. DeLisi asked that the architecture of the development reflect to
some degree the historical nature of the area. Noethlich cautioned that
something would eventually have to be done about Highland Avenue in the
northwest section of the development as it leads to Broadway. The Panel
collectively praised the proposal in general and Noethlich thanked the
presenters for their participation.
Pre-Hearing Examiner Review - Midtown Estero West:
Attorney Matt Uhle and Dan DeLisi, representing the applicant, appeared to
update the panel on the 48-acre MPD
proposed for the west side of Three Oaks Boulevard south of Corkscrew Road.
DeLisi addressed a previous request and distributed a five page draft of design
guidelines for the development. DeLisi noted that the guidelines were
adapted from nearby Estero Town Center.
The second area discussed was a small revision to the master concept plan.
In response to Welch’s question whether the development would contain
“affordable” or “workforce” housing, DeLisi said the developer would likely opt
for “affordable” housing with a donation made to The Lee County Affordable
Housing Trust Fund. Although that donation would not necessarily be used
in Estero, the developer will also attempt to tie into the workforce program
initiated by Bonita Bay Group within Osprey Cove in Estero.
Proposed Stand Alone Bar/Cocktail Lounge in Corkscrew Village Center: Noethlich
reported that County Staff has agreed to notify the ECPP if such an
application is actually filed with Lee County. Discussion ensued as to the
circumstances that such use might be allowed, despite the prohibition under
Policy 19.2.5 of the Estero Community Plan. DeLisi said he would check
with the county for an interpretation.
David Graham Award for Excellence in Development
Lienesch reported that three nominations have
been received. The deadline remains March 15th.
Estero Five Year Planning Update:
Subcommittee chairman John Goodrich was unable to attend the meeting.
Noethlich said he hopes to meet with several developers active in the community
to participate in the process. DeLisi has been appointed as a consultant to the
Toth: Motion to adjourn. Lienesch: Second. Motion passed
unanimously. Meeting adjourned at 8:55PM.
NEXT MEETING: 6:00 PM, MONDAY, APRIL 9, ESTERO COMMUNITY PARK.