Village Council approved a fee structure for the Bonus Density Program that was adopted earlier this year for the three properties that Lee County had approved under their Bonus Density Program. These fees will be used by the Village for future purchases of public lands. The Village also continues with a series of public information and input meetings as part of the Comprehensive Plan process. Village Council plans to transmit the final Comprehensive Plan to the State for review in early 2018. The Village is also considering whether to extend a moratorium on medical marijuana facilities and dispensaries within Estero’s boundaries. Additionally, two new developments, a furniture store and a bank, started the Development Order review process with the Design Review Board this month.

The next Design Review Board meeting will be Wed., Nov. 8, at 5:30 p.m. The next Planning & Zoning Board meeting will be Tuesday, Nov. 14, at 5:30 p.m.

Village Council Actions

Park Place of Estero

Village Council approved a reconfiguration of the Master Concept Plan for Park Place reducing the number of lots from 26 to 16 single-family homes to be built at 9400 Block Lane (west of River Ranch Road). This will be a gated community with one-story, 3,500-square-foot, semi-custom homes, each with the option for either an extended lanai or a three-car garage. Council’s approval included a provision that the developer build sidewalks on both sides of the street within Park Place and that the public would be able to access a meandering lake with a lighted fountain and sitting area at the front of the community. In addition, the developer has committed to preserving two heritage pines and one heritage live oak. Park Place’s presentation may be viewed here.

Bonus Density

Village Council voted to adopt a $20,000 per unit fee for Estero’s new Bonus Density Program, unless a landowner establishes a vested right to a different fee (as documented with Lee County prior to the Village’s incorporation). This program applies only to three projects previously zoned and approved for bonus density by Lee County: Estero Grande, Estero on the River and Downtown Estero. Bonus density allows a developer to build more units than permitted by the zoning in exchange for paying a fee, which the Village will place in a fund to be used only for the acquisition of lands for public space, recreation or preservation. You may read the Bonus Density resolution here.

Planning & Zoning Board Activities

Medical Marijuana

The PZB conducted a public hearing on a proposed ordinance prohibiting medical marijuana cultivation facilities and treatment center dispensaries within the Village of Estero. The Village’s existing moratorium banning sales of medical marijuana expires on Dec. 7.  Following discussion and public comments, the board voted to recommend that Village Council not adopt the ordinance as written. This ordinance is on the agenda for the Nov. 1 Council meeting.

Design Review Board Activities

Basset Furniture

Basset Furniture is seeking a development order to build a 15,100-square-foot store at 23230 Via Villagio in Coconut Point Mall, next to City Mattress. The building would have Mediterranean style architecture with fabric canopies on two windows. Landscaping plans show a park bench sitting area with a fountain and bicycle parking. The board asked the applicant to make some architectural changes including a taller tower and to bring back photos of the existing landscaping and samples of proposed paint colors. Basset Furniture’s presentation may be viewed here.

Chase Bank

Chase Bank is proposing to build a 3,558-square-foot building at 10801 Miromar Outlet Drive at Ben Hill Griffin Parkway. The bank would include one detached, drive-through ATM. Plans also call for pedestrian connections with pavers and enhanced landscaping. This was an informational presentation only.

Miromar Design Center

Miromar Design Center is seeking to build a monument sign in the median of its main entrance off of Corkscrew Road. The sign was previously permitted by Lee County but was never constructed. The board recommended repositioning the address (10800 Corkscrew Road) to make it more visible on the sign. This was an informational presentation only.

Heartland Dental

The Board approved a development order for Heartland Dental to begin construction on a 5,520-square-foot, multi-tenant building including a dental office and a retail tenant. This will be a new building within the Grand Oaks Shoppes at the northeast corner of Corkscrew Road and Ben Hill Griffin Parkway. Renderings of the Heartland Dental building may be viewed here.

Comprehensive Plan

A representative from Metro Forecasting Models conducted a brief workshop during the Oct. 25 Village Council meeting to review Estero’s population trends and other data. This included past growth and permitting history, as well as projections for Estero’s future population and housing growth. The Village is experiencing increasing population and declining vacancy rates, indicating there are fewer snowbirds, by percentage, than there have been in Estero historically. Estero’s 2016 year-round population was 30,851 with the total becoming 46,091 when the seasonal residents (snowbirds) were added. The Village’s population is expected to grow 24 percent by 2020 with another 25-percent increase anticipated by 2030. The number of housing units is expected to grow from 24,257 in 2016 to about 28,585 in 2030. Metro Forecasting’s presentation may be viewed here.

Representatives from LaRue Planning and Management Services conducted a workshop on Future Land Use goals, objectives and policies during the Oct. 17 PZB meeting. The goals of planning the Village’s Future Land Use include developing a distinct character for Estero as a place with a unique quality of life, establishing aesthetic standards, and promoting a “sense of place” for Estero. The consultant reviewed several objectives including commercial site location standards, bonus density, and historic and archaeological resources. The full presentation may be viewed here.

There are several Comprehensive Plan workshops scheduled for the month of November. Village Council workshops are:

  • 1: Recreation & Open Space and Schools
  • 15: Intergovernmental Coordination and Capital Improvements
  • 29: Housing and Infrastructure

Additionally, a workshop on Land Use will be held during the Nov. 14 Planning and Zoning Board meeting.

More information and documents for the Comprehensive Plan may be accessed on the Village’s website at: https://estero-fl.gov/village-comprehensive-plan/

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