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CAPE CORAL | Residents march in protest of Redfish Pointe land development

Redfish Pointe protest
Posted at 4:33 PM, Sep 27, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-27 18:47:06-04

CAPE CORAL, Fla. — In July, more than 100 residents tightly packed into the environmental center at Rotary Park to voice their opposition of the Redfish Pointe Development on 350 acres of wetland in Cape Coral, south of Pelican Boulevard.

Three months later, around 60 residents gathered to protest the development in a march from Rotary Park to SW 6th Place.

Residents are concerned about the impact the development will have on wildlife and mangrove trees. During Hurricane Ian, residents said the mangroves prevented their property from receiving more damage.

Cape Coral resident Ken Jarros said, “I bought it because this patch of land was going to protect me.”

While Jarros and his family are still waiting to move back home, they said the damage would be worse if not for the protection of the natural environment.

Opposition leader Joe Bonasia said, “[After Ian] You got to walk away having learned something, and the lesson is you don’t go building in wetlands.”

The proposed development includes 17 buildings: 800 multi family unit homes, a resort hotel, waterfront restaurants, retail shops and a marina. In the proposal, two thirds of land remain preserved. 90 acres in the middle of property will get developed.

The commercial manager, Annette Barbaccia, who represents the property owners, said, “I think this can be a beautiful waterfront community that preserves the majority of the site.”

She added that the property owners want to work with the public and include their ideas in the land use amendment.

“We just encourage if people are concerned to work with us,” Barbaccia said.

According to Barbaccia, the owners won’t accept a bid until after the city approves the land use amendment. She said the timeline is uncertain for when that will happen.