NewsLocal NewsIn Your NeighborhoodPunta Gorda

Actions

Punta Gorda Airport gets cited over 'junk-like conditions'

Several trailer sites still remain from Hurricane Ian near the airport.
Trailers near Punta Gorda Airport
Posted at 4:15 PM, Jun 23, 2024

PUNTA GORDA, Fla. — You may have noticed some trailers baking in the sun near the Punta Gorda Airport.

However, that shouldn't last much longer after Charlotte County Code Enforcement cited it.

Charlotte County Community Correspondent Victoria Scott reached out to code enforcement to find out what's the big deal.

"I don't think anyone ever lived in them," said Charlotte County Planning & Zoning official Shaun Cullinan. "They were put there to be distributed out to people who needed housing."

At one point, these trailers had a noble purpose; they came from FEMA and other emergency agencies after Hurricane Ian.

FEMA actually rented the space from the airport, and still has six months on its lease. However, over time, things have become a little disorganized.

"One of the sites at least has a bunch of tires and pieces of mobile or homes scattered about," Cullinan told Scott. "That would be what we call junk-like conditions."

It's this "mess" that has code enforcement concerned for the safety of the airport and surrounding area, especially if a new storm roles through.

"They could become projectiles, could damage critical facilities, you know, the airport, the jail, the emergency operations center," Cullinan said.

Now FEMA and the airport have 30 days to take action.

Despite their current state, FEMA still hopes to do some good with the trailers. It said in a statement that some will be sold at auction to disaster survivors.

The Punta Gorda Airport wouldn't talk about this situation on camera, but it remains hopeful that a reasonable solution can be worked out for all involved. An airport official added that FEMA promised to move the trailers altogether, if another significant storm was forecasted for the area.

We'll keep you posted on what happens out here.