What’s The Town’s Vision For a New Red Coconut?

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While Seagate Development has not yet shared any plans for the Red Coconut property, which it recently purchased for $52 million, those that incorporated Fort Myers Beach knew a day would come when those 10 acres would be redeveloped. And, here’s what they were thinking back then.

Nobody knows what Seagate plans to propose to the town on the Red Coconut property. We do know it will never again be an RV park again. The new FEMA rules, strict hurricane codes for rebuilding, and a $52 million price tag should put that thought to rest.

As part of the $52 million deal, Seagate did agree to one restrictive covenant. It calls for the placement of a “memorial marker” on one of the properties incorporating the Red Coconut sign. And, they have to name either an internal street or a facility on one of the properties after either the Red Coconut or the Myers Family.

The Red Coconut property is zoned “Village.” When the town’s Comprehensive Plan was written back in the mid 90’s, it was written with the foresight to know that eventually the land might be redeveloped. And here we are.

A rendering of the Red Coconut Village from the Town’s Comprehensive Plan.

The vision back then was for a complete neighborhood with an “internal circulation system making it possible to walk or ride bikes to school, recreation areas, and shopping without using Estero Boulevard.” That might include single family homes and townhouses, a walkable community that includes commercial. An area that might be its own little village. Think Celebration outside of Disney.

An ideal plan, according to the town’s Comprehensive Plan, would “retain the psychological connection and views in both directions to the preserve and the beach, and offer a variety of housing types and opportunity for mixed uses including some continued commercial uses on the Bay side of Estero Boulevard.”

Of course, Seagate may decide they want to try to put a hotel on that property and go through the planned development process with the town for that. They have not shared any details on their plans yet. Another question might be, if they had roughly 200 units (slabs for RV’s) in the park, could they build 200 multi-million homes and scrunch them together?

The Comprehensive Plan stated that any new neighborhood redevelopment at Red Coconut should “not be dominated by garages and feature porches on the front, walkable narrow streets with shade trees that double as view corridors to the preserve and beach, and quiet internal street connections to the north and south.”

Don’t forget Gulf View Colony, also an RV Park, was right next door, and is also gone. We understand GVC is also in the process of being sold. Would the two communities connect to create an even larger little neighborhood? These are certainly the 2 most unique properties on Fort Myers Beach and everyone will be watching to see what becomes of a plot of land that holds so many memories for so many people.

In our Tuesday newsletter we’ll have a story highlighting the many memories visitors of the park have had over the years.

19 COMMENTS

  1. For the deal of 52 million to go thru, Seagate already has a deal with the city. If 52 million is your base, what are you going to need to build to hit your expected profits from your initial investment? Its going to be big and its going to have density!

  2. Paradise will never be the same- we are all thinking negatively.

    Let’s take a minute to be Thankful that we survived while many didn’t.
    Will it be the Same- No But remember We Are Strong!!!!
    Change could be Good let’s work together to make it work.💜

    we survived and many didn’t.

  3. Lived down the street a few blocks from the Red Coconut park and thought as many what great little area for many people that most likely can’t come back due to the cost of real estate NOW. I believe that the investment company that bought this property will do what’s in the best interest of its clients, not the town. ROI is critical to investment companies and this will be no different. I with someone earlier that mentioned density and all I hear is more and more density with NO plan for the island to handle it.

  4. In my humble opinion, whatever the city approves for the Red Coconut property should be focused on lowering the Island density. Before hurricane Ian traffic on the Island was not tolerable. And the environment was stressed in regards to wildlife habitat. I encourage city planners to take this opportunity to benefit Fort Myers Beach residents and the Islands natural beauty vs. the interest of off Island developers.

    • Well, if the planning commission and town council listen to the residents of the island and not issue permits for these mega mansions and mega resorts, then the island could still maintain some of it’s charm. But let’s face it, when the high rise towers were allowed to be built, clearly no one was listening to the owners of the small cottages and residents. This is an opportunity to right the wrong from the past and it would also help with the obscene amount of traffic, but they won’t. The deals will be made in the back rooms like they are now and you can already listen to the word salad that comes out of their mouths when they are asked questions about numbers, heights,etc. It is always a vague non-answer that we get. We have to all face it, the island had not been cared for and maintained. Of all of the keys/islands on the Gulf Coast, FMB was the only one that had a bad repuation. Insane traffic, run down, homeless, dirty and not safe were titles it had earned. Fair or not, that is what people outside of the island said. And yes, the traffic is just not acceptable. I own mid island and there were times it took me 1 hr to get to Walmart. There is no excuse for that. FMB was in desperate need of a major face lift and like it or not, we are going to get it. Let’s just hope the people in charge of making the decisions on the future of FMB are going to listen to the residents. Will they? Sadly, I would think they will not.

  5. As a resident of FMB for 46 years I have seen lots of changes on FMB and it is obvious after Ian things will never be the same.. but I do not hear much about the infrastructure of FMB … how can it possible handle all the new homes, resorts and hotels that are being proposed? What is the plan?? And the traffic, well that will be a huge problem.. it always has been and soon it will be worse than ever. What is the plan, or is there one?

  6. Don’t worry about infrastructure and traffic. To afford what will eventually come, they need a heliport for all the millionaires. $52m for 10 acres? Seems low as Lahaina 2.6 acres sold for $30m!

  7. The loss of Red Cocoanut, Gulfview Shoppes, is a loss to the island, the community, Fort Myers Beach will no longer be a place of memories, a place of paradise that many looked forward to coming to each season! IAN took that from us!

    • Would make a lovely new neighborhood of homes and shops. I hope not a hotel. Yea the homes will be pricey as that is what the sale price dictates. I find it interesting, the people who have such hate for those of us who have built new homes. I wonder if those haters have ever contributed anything to the betterment of the town. Volunteered. Donated.

      • Maxine, I wish I had the ability to edit/move my comment to a completely separate comment. Again, I didn’t mean to be insensitive. I absolutely understand what you were saying.

    • I pray for the 4 ladies I last saw right before storm ,one beautiful older women helping me fill my propane tanks as approaching hurricane had shut down all but “true locals” –
      24 hours later everything was Gone –
      Does anyone know about these women?
      I will never forget the total abandonment of FMB – carmine the sheriff needs to go.
      A political hack NOT a constitutional Sheriff of the people –

  8. On Red Coconut: the idea of a mini-village sounds great vs another condo/hotel. But garages will be needed and under the structures is the logical place being that any residential structures will have to adhere to zoning laws that require the living area floors of these cottages be many feet ( well over 10’)above the sea level.

  9. I must have missed the information provided by the town about how they plan to deal with the insufficient infrastructure to accommodate the massive increase of people and traffic that all the changes will bring.

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