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Tent Campers Banned from RV Park Proposal

February 8, 2013 by   - () Leave a Comment

The Planning and Zoning commission in Fort Myers Beach, Fla., on Wednesday (Feb. 6) got a tiny step closer to making the proposed RV resort in Northwest Cape Coral a reality.

The board unanimously approved an ordinance to amend land use regulations to allow for recreational vehicles to be added as a special exception use in an agricultural district, the Fort Myers Beach Talk reported.

However, the board had some concerns regarding the definition of residency, the minimum size allowable for such an exception, and the hooking up to water and wastewater facilities.

Rick Sosnowski of the Department of Commercial Development outlined the ordinance where such a business would require at least 25 acres in mixed use with approval via the planned development project process.

Among the conditions would be the disallowance of popup trailers or tent campers. The cabins must have a kitchen and toilet and must be in code, the roads must be privately maintained and meet all codes.

Cliff Repperger, representing Avalon Enginerring, developer of the resort, disagreed with the acreage, saying at least 100 acres would be necessary for an RV resort and anything less would make it a “trailer park.”

Richard O’Donnell, president of the Northwest Neighborhood Association, had some reservations. He said much of the ordinance was rushed in order to complete it.

“Will there be a more detailed presentation? Can we trust the developer to live up to his word?” O’Donnell asked, adding he agreed with Repperger’s 100-acre minimum proposal.

Doug Kidd, another association member, questioned what would represent an RV: a $500,000 cabin cruiser or “a school bus conversion?”

Another concern was with a 180-day residency limit. The council believed that certain RV owners would rent out their RVs to other people or family members to allow them to stay at the resort.

In the end, the board decided the ordinance was 99% finished and approved it being sent to the city council, provided there be citizen input to help fine tune it.

The city council will hear the ordinance at Monday’s regular meeting, with public hearings on Feb. 25 and March 11.

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