Eden Oak

28 Jun 2022

 

 

Ongoing updates:

 24 May 2022

The Conservation 20/20 land acquisition negotiations between the County and the Eden Oak property owner have formally ended due to the large gap between the appraised value and the asking price. SCCF is exploring alternative methods to conserve this property including pursuing land acquisition grants and private gap funding.  If there are any changes to the status of the property, it can be re-nominated to the Conservation 20/20 program. 

The property owners zoning change request is still active and the final decision to award a zoning change will be made by the Board of County Commissioners (BoCC). The Hearing Examiner will hear final presentations from the County staff and the property owner on July 12, 2022 before she makes her final recommendation to the BoCC. As a reminder, County staff recommended denial of the applicant’s request for a zoning change due to the proposal’s inconsistency with the County’s Comprehensive Plans Goals, Objectives, and Policies related to the protection and enhancement of wetlands, the protection of wildlife habitat, the protection of life and property, the limitation of public expenditures within Coastal High Hazard Areas, and development within coastal planning areas established by the Lee Plan. The request, if approved, would adversely affect environmentally critical and environmentally sensitive areas and natural resources, and presents compatibility-related concerns to adjacent uses as a result of these adverse environmental impacts.

We will continue to report back on the potential to acquire the property and on the upcoming dates and hearings of the on-going zoning change case. 

18 March 2022

The Conservation 20/20 land acquisition negotiations between the County and the Eden Oak property owner are currently at an impasse.  SCCF is speaking with both the County and the property owner to see if there are any alternative ways to move forward on the acquisition of this property.  We will keep you posted on the progress.

24 Feb 2022

Zoning Hearing Continued to July 12, 2022

The final zoning presentation to the Hearing Examiner by Lee County staff and the Eden Oak applicant has been continued from March 10, 2022 to July 12, 2022.

SCCF representatives will be attending the next County Conservation 20/20 Advisory Committee meeting, scheduled for March 16, where it is anticipated that there will be an update on the status of the negotiations to acquire the Eden Oak property through the Conservation 20/20 program. Updates from that meeting will be posted on this web-page.

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16 Sept 2021

The zoning public hearing with closing arguments for staff and the Eden Oak property owner formerly scheduled for October 21, 2021, has been continued to March 10, 2022. Please click here to view the Hearing Examiner’s Rescheduling Order. 

The County's negotiations to purchase this property through the Conservation 20/20 Land Acquisition Program are ongoing and separate from the zoning application. 

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27 July 2021

Lee County has made an offer to purchase the Eden Oak property for Conservation 20/20.

Lee County staff provided an update on the Eden Oak land acquisition nomination at the Conservation Lands Stewardship and Advisory Committee meeting on Wednesday, July 21.  After having all of the appraisals in hand, they stated that they have made an offer to the Eden Oak property owner and are waiting for a response. 

Although a "For Sale" sign has appeared on the property, the negotiations with the County are ongoing. SCCF is following this very closely and will post any updates as they occur.

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19 July 2021

There is a Lee County Conservation Land Acquisition and Advisory Committee (CLASAC) meeting scheduled for Wednesday, July 21, 2021, at 5:30 pm. We anticipate that staff will give an update on the ongoing Conservation 20/20 acquisition negotiations for the Eden Oak Property.  SCCF staff will attend and will post any updates from the meeting.  Should anyone be interested in attending, please see the following link: Conservation 20/20 meeting info.

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18 May 2021

The Eden Oak Zoning hearing has been continued from June 3, 2021 to October 21, 2021 at 9am at the Lee County Hearing Examiner's Office.

The Eden Oak Conservation 20/20 land acquisition negotiations are on-going.  

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20 Jan 2021

According to County Lands staff and the update included in the agenda being presented this evening to the Conservation Land Acquisition and Stewardship Advisory Committee, the Eden Oak property owners representative stated that the County should expect to receive their privately obtained appraisal soon.  Once that information is received, acquisition activities on the property should resume.

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On Nov. 19, 2020, the applicant for the proposed Eden Oak development submitted a continuance request due to COVID-19 related travel restrictions to the U.S. from his residence in Canada. 

The hearing examiner granted the request the same day. The hearing will resume at 9am on June 3, 2021, at the Hearing Examiner's Hearing Room, 1500 Monroe Street, Second Floor in downtown Fort Myers. 

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SCCF staff and a representative of Palm Acres and Shell Point attended the Lee County Conservation Lands and Stewardship Advisory Committee (CLASAC) on Oct. 21. Although Eden Oak was not on the agenda, County Lands staff announced that they were contacted by the Eden Oak property owners to let them know that they are under contract with their own appraisers.  

County staff signaled that the Eden Oak acquisition negotiations remain in progress.  SCCF will continue to post updates as we receive them.

Click here for the agenda: Oct. 21 CLASAC Agenda

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The Lee County Hearing Examiner was scheduled to hear final arguments from staff and the property owner on June 24, but due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, the examiner granted a continuance. The closing statements have been rescheduled for December 11, 2020, at 9 am. Click here for the Hearing Examiners order.

Conservation 20/20 is a land acquisition and stewardship program to protect natural areas in Lee County for the benefit of present and future generations in Southwest Florida. 

We will continue to advocate for the preservation of this valuable mangrove habitat and we thank the many supporters, residents, and advocates that have participated with us on this long Eden Oak journey.  

Background

The current proposal is to dredge and fill 36 acres of mangrove wetlands to build 55 residential homesites with docks, excavate a new canal and create a boat basin with additional docks. Our advocacy has made a difference.  However the current plan still destroys 36 acres of mangrove wetlands, will put more people in the coastal high hazard area, creates new sources of pollution from runoff, will create boat traffic in sensitive habitat used by a number of threatened and endangered species, and adds traffic to the evacuation and emergency access on Shell Pointe Blvd. 

The original application for development targeted 158 acres of mangrove wetland and open water to build 252 multi-family units, 54 single-family units, and a 171-slip marina with a clubhouse and community pool. In addition to mangrove habitat destruction and water quality impacts from runoff, the project will impact a number of protected species that live in or utilize the area, including the Florida manatee, Smalltooth sawfish, and the ornate diamondback terrapin. SCCF will continue to track this project through the permit review process. The project is currently under zoning review by Lee County.

The applicant has requested their South Florida Water Management District Application be put on hold for a year.

Please contact our Natural Resources Policy Assistant Holly Schwartz at hschwartz@sccf.org with further questions.