Pier Committee Needs Your Input Now

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It’s the number one tourist attraction in Lee County but it could be several years before the Fort Myers Beach pier is rebuilt. The Let’s Go FMB Fort Myers Beach pier committee has posted a 6-question survey they want your input on.

The survey results will be presented this Thursday as part of the Let’s Go FMB meeting at DiamondHead. Pier committee member Allen Shanosky will present the results from the survey which includes questions about the characteristics of a new pier that are important to you and whether you would pay more to park in Lynn Hall Park to help cover the cost of the pier if that was necessary.

The Fort Myers Beach pier was totally destroyed during the wind and storm surge from Hurricane Ian. The pier is owner by Lee County. Earlier this month Lee County Manager Dave Harner told Beach Talk Radio News that the county was working through the FEMA process right now and estimated rebuilding the pier could take 4 years. He did say there will be an opportunity for public comment along the way.

Shanosky researched piers all along the east coast and made a presentation to the community with examples of 2 possible future piers.The goal of the presentation was to try to push this to the top of Lee County’s priority list.

Take the Let’s Go FMB pier committee survey HERE.

22 COMMENTS

  1. We’ve been spending 4 – 6 weeks on Ft. Myers Beach for over 40 years. We love the beach. While we do walk to the pier every year, we also use the library, the art alliance, Bowditch park, Ostego Bay Marine Museum, and lots of restaurants. We are deeded Time share owners, so we do pay some taxes, nothing compared to home owners. Our place was destroyed and of course Insurance hassles, town approval for rebuild. etc etc. So we do understand what owners are going through if only on a small scale. fished on the pier as well as tourists. Would like to see it rebuilt but if the funds for the pier can go towards more helpful things that’s good. Will it?

  2. As a resident and property owner I see little to no benefit from my county or city taxes supporting a new pier. In fact, I, like many resident home owners, do not want anything on the Island that will draw more crowds. I support efforts that will improve the environment for the local wildlife, reduce traffic and bring a quiet peaceful atmosphere to FMB.

  3. Definitely rebuild the pier as soon as possible and get Time Square started too. There will be traffic and parking issues no matter what you do. Tourism is what keeps the shops, bars, & restaurants alive. The pier is a focal point at the beautiful beach. This is the opportunity to come back better than ever! I’d love to see snacks & gift shops, environmental/ecological fact signage, and shaded areas to sit, fish, and simply enjoy the view.

  4. A pier needs to be rebuilt. Although, I think they should have already started it. This is a huge focal point of FMB and many people utilized it. I think that area needs to be top priority. That’s my opinion.

  5. I remember a few weeks back one woman said the library was the best attraction on the beach. So people saying it’s the pier as the #1 attraction is not a surprise. I am not understanding how the pier makes the town money unless it is from parking? People that fish on the pier are not going to eat dinner at a nice resteraunt after fishing, nor will the sunset watchers be spending any money. They will just bring their wine in a box and leave as soon as the sun sets. The island still looks like a bomb went off with all the piles of debris, collapsing homes, dead trees, businesses that are destroyed and barely standing. Maybe the town should work on safety issues first and the county can worry about the pier later since the pier is the county’s responsibility. Fishermen and sunset watchers can just bring a chair and enjoy their hobby on the beach. Now there’s a concept.

    • Charlene……are you kidding me!!!!!!!!
      Fisherman and sunset watchers don’t spend any money there???? Our family has been coming down from Wisconsin as tourists for over 25 years…..I fished off that pier nearly every day in the month of February……and our family has ate at EVERY restaurant on the beach over the years……
      I’m pretty sure sunset watchers spend a few dollars also while there ……and not all bring their own wine box!!!!! The pier is a GREAT asset to the area….
      I totally understand that the area looks like a bomb went off…people are struggling and so are businesses…..
      But to say that the pier didn’t bring people that spend money there except for parking is totally wrong….and it kind of pisses me off. Now there’s a concept to consider!!!!!

      • Randy, It “pisses you off”.LOL … We, the home owners on FMB/Lee County are the ones paying the insane taxes that foot the bill for the improvements to the roads,etc. to be able to accomodate the horrible influx of tourists. Unless a local is a bartender or a waitress, locals are not excited to see the slow driving cars holding up traffic as they don’t have a care in the world. Just because you are a snowbird who visits is that supposed to be your badge to make it OK for you to demand things from us? Buy a home on FMB and pay the taxes and insurance like we have to pay and then you can have a seat at the table. Until then you are just a snowbird that comes for a month and drives 15 mph under the speed limit, annoying those of us who still have to drive to get to work. People who do not OWN on FMB really should not be giving their advice on anything that costs tax payers more money or anything that has an impact on the price of our homes. Since Ian, my home is worth $700,000 less, my insurance still has not paid, I have to fight the town for every permit….each one is a battle and all my bills have gone up. So do you think my concerns are what some tourists/snowbirds want and expect to be a priority?

        • I agree with you. Vacationing 1 week a year is much different than living here full time. I rather enjoy the group of pelicans that perch on what is left of the pier. I have enjoyed many sunsets from the beach. FMB needs to quit putting lipstick on a pig and start rebuilding Times Square.

      • Randy, I agree with Charlene. The pier is not a main attraction to FMB. Overall it’s not going to stop people from coming to FMB to go to restaurants and shops if there’s not a pier in place. Previous to Ian I would say many people who were fishing on the pier didn’t look like they would be a patron of the other establishments on the island many of which would complain about the prices that bars/restaurants are charging for food and alcohol, you are obviously an exception as there will be with some others. Is not having a pier on FMB going to stop you from going back there to go to restaurants? I just can’t see the pier being a sole attraction to the beach that the local businesses will suffer because there’s not a pier rebuilt as quickly as you’d like.

    • Absolutely incredible the narrow way you think, you must be one of those that want the island only for you and won’t care about others

  6. Can build a bridge in several months but a pier that is 25 -30 yards will take 4years? If they want to off set cost , get things moving asap. They say they are going to fine people that aren’t doing a thing with. They can’t clean or demolish until they get permits. It’s not all the residents fault.

    • Great point. I will also tell you that not one postcis going to go in the water until the future of Times Square is determined

  7. seems to me at a quick glance of the pier in its current state that the pilings for the most part are there. Seems to me like it would be pretty easy to have prefab concrete slabs attached to the pilings and a railing system built and bring back the pier in a similar fashion that it was. Why do we need a bigger, more modern pier when our old one was such a nice facility.

    • Huh??

      Any fines for code violations are issued by the Town of FMB. The pier is owned by LeeCo.

      No, the new pier cannot be built in mere months. 🤦‍♀️

  8. If the pier is the number one tourist attraction in Lee County (funny, I could have sworn it was the beaches and the climate) then tourist tax dollars could and should rebuild that pier beginning tomorrow and be reimbursed by FEMA later.
    That won’t happen of course because the rules crafted years ago for what those dollars could be used for are so narrow, limited, politicized and even confusing, such a popular tourist attraction somehow can’t or won’t attract that money right now, today.
    Four years? Ridiculous. A bureaucracy mired in incompetence.

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