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Vacant Winn-Dixie in Estero to become 137 high-end apartments

Plans for complex, surrounded by golf courses and gated communities, draws some questions from neighbors
Posted at 9:43 PM, Dec 19, 2023

ESTERO, Fla. — This site of a vacant Winn Dixie in Estero will soon be new homes. Even with Southwest Florida's need for more housing, some people who live nearby are pushing back.

Lee county's Planning Zoning and Design Board approved the development in October, 2023. It calls for the demolition former grocery store to put up 4 stories and 137 apartment units in it's place. The complex will be at the corner of Coconut Road and Three Oaks Parkway.

"View, noise, lights, serenity, the peace, the security, there's so many reasons on top of the fact that we are within 500 feet, so I disagree [with the idea that neighbors are not aggrieved by the plan]," a resident speaking at a council meeting in Estero said.

The question is whether the development fits the neighborhood, surrounded by golf courses and gated communities.

"Without ample parking, residents may be forced to park along Three Oaks and Coconut. Not only is this illegal, but it can provide a tremendous safety issue for residents of the Brooks, as you know this is already a very busy intersection, especially at high traffic hours," another resident said.

The developers, Long Bay Partners, Top CR Associates, and PAC Estero disagree.

"I do want to at least put on the record our objection to finding that any of these folks are aggrieved or adversely affected in any manor, or degree greater than other members of the public," Steve Hartsell, of Pavese Lawfirm speaking on behalf of the developers said.

The village of Estero's council voted unanimously to affirm the Planning Zoning and Design Board's decision on the development. While they heard the residents, they say council will honor the developers as they are in compliance with the land development code and comprehensive plan.

Fox 4 will update viewers when a timeline for the approved apartments is presented.