LEHIGH ACRES, Fla. — A Lehigh Acres business owner is expressing concerns over the construction of storage container homes in Lehigh Acres.
"You can't have it both ways, you can't have shipping containers, manufactured homes, and nice homes, and expect to attract big-box investment," said Michael Thompson, a Realtor Broker in Lehigh Acres.
Thompson says he fears the disparity in new construction coming to that city could push away future investment, adding that there should be more economic development for the people that live east of I-75.
"I constantly see people in Lehigh acres always complaining, 'oh well, we don't have any big-box retailers.' We don't have a target; we don't even have a Pollo Tropical, we have to go into Fort Myers to have all this stuff," said Thompson.
Thompson believes the new construction gives off a bad appearance for people who are willing to invest in the community.
"It's not going to scream hey come here and invest in Lehigh Acres when someone turns down the road and sees a nice $250,000 house, and then they see storage containers sitting right next to it, or if they turn down another road and see a double-wide trailer," said Thompson.
Thompson says he doesn't have anything against the construction of modular homes or container homes — his concern is that the city is allowing the homes to be constructed throughout Lehigh Acres.
"I think the county should allow those types of units to be built and constructed, but maybe if they contained them to a certain area where they are not going to bring down the values of other people's homes," said Thompson.
We reached out to Commissioner Frank Mann's office for a comment on this issue, and are waiting to hear back.