Letter The The Editor: Approve The Dune Walkover


On Monday both WINK News and The Fort Myers News Press carried a story on the dune walkover Eddie Rood and Kurt Kroemer have been fighting with the town of Fort Myers Beach over. We also received a letter from one of our readers that we wanted to share. It comes from Becky Van Dyke. Here’s what she had to say.

(From Becky Van Dyke) “I feel compelled to respond to your story last Friday about Mr. Atterholt and his personal appeal to the public. I’m sure that I’m not the only reader that picked up on Mr. Atterholt’s plea, “I encourage your readers to walk along the beach and through the Critical Wildlife Area.” So I have to ask, does anyone notice the hypocrisy in this statement? He clearly encourages your readers to walk through the Critical Wildlife Area but in turn denounces the residents asking for the walkover, and their right to walk to the beach. Isn’t Mr. Atterholt’s main objection to the walkover to keep people out of the Critical Wildlife Area, but for his argument, it’s ok for your readers to walk through the Critical Wildlife Area.

I admit I’ve been following the stories about the walkover half heartedly. I’m not sure that I know a lot about it, but I think I’ve picked up the key points. Please keep in mind that I’m not sure I really care about the walkover or that I care that FMB could lose millions of dollars. Its not my walkover and it is not my money, although I have to say, the walkover seems reasonable, and it’s difficult to understand the opposition when they make statements like the above.

I’ve heard that this walkover would help a neighborhood of homes have access to the beach? Also, I’ve heard that the residents asking for the walkover have state permits that are already issued by the Department of Environmental Protection. I’ve heard there was a court battle between FMB and the residents asking for the walkover and FMB lost. I’ve also heard, contrary to Mr. Atterholt’s position, in that court battle, the judge presiding over the lawsuit determined the walkover would be a good addition and help preserve the area.

I have to say, looking at this from the outside, it seems the residents asking for the walkover are being treated unjustly and unfairly. It seems the logical approach would have been for FMB to help this neighborhood figure out how to enjoy their beachfront property and get to the beach.

Becky Van Dyke

Submit your letters to the editor on any story by e-mailing it to edryantheeditor@gmail.com



  1. Having walked on dune walkovers in Lover Key State Park, those on Sanibel and Captiva, and along with those at Caladesi State Park in Dunedin, FL; I am not sure I understand why THIS particular walk over is any different than those stated above. At the north end of Lovers Key, just below the Big Carlos Pass Bridge is a walk bridge over the wetlands to get from the parking lot to the beach. And THIS one is not significant (at least 10 feet across)? If the the State has approved along with a judge upholding the decision, why are we as a town trying to fight this? I respect our Town Council and hopes that they make the right decision……allow the bridge. Let’s move onto to more significant issues our island home has.

    • Thank you Janet, you are a sensible person, unfortunately, when Council members are influenced by lobbyist, their judgement becomes clouded. Please continue to comment in the future and thank you for your support.

  2. Walk thru the muck like I have for almost 40 years! Just trying to generate more revenue from their vacation rentals. Property used to end at high tide line?

    • Thank you Richard, please email Jim and ask him to return to his original position when he stated he was in favor of the walkover. His email address is available on the Town of FMB website. Pleas continue to comment as the story progresses in the future.

  3. Becky, respectfully, the main objection to the “dune walkover” is not because we want to keep people out of the Critical Wildlife Area (CWA). When you walk along the beach on the Southern end of our island you are walking through the CWA. Nobody is proposing to stop or slow that natural walking path. What is being proposed by the applicants is building a significant man made bridge over a body of water in an area that abuts that CWA. This intrusion raises serious environmental as well aesthetic concerns. This proposed “dune walkover” is clearly in the interest of the two home owners but it is much more difficult to argue that it is in the public interest.

    • Thank you Catherine for your support. The Town by their own admission has spent over 300 thousand dollars of your tax dollars stopping a walkover that helps a neighborhood of beachfront property owners have access to the beach. Please email Jim Atterholt through the FMB email address for him and encourage him to go back to his original position in support of the walkover.

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