At a recent event celebrating the club’s 60th anniversary, city leaders say they are unsure when construction will begin to upgrade the facility. Voters in November 2018 approved spending money on the project. “We don’t really have a definitive answer on why it may be taking so long – other than it’s reviews and they want to make sure that everything is done properly,” says Cape Coral District 3 Councilman Tom Hayden.
Cape Coral, Fla. celebrated the 60th anniversary of its Yacht Club this past weekend. It’s a staple of the city, but plans to renovate it have been in limbo for months, Fox4 Southwest Florida reported.
It was supposed to shut down for construction in April, but issues with acquiring permits have leaders unsure of when that construction will happen.
“We don’t really have a definitive answer on why it may be taking so long – other than it’s reviews and they want to make sure that everything is done properly,” said Cape Coral District 3 Councilman Tom Hayden, who attended the anniversary celebrations.
The vision for the Yacht Club’s renovations was presented by city leaders in 2020, after Cape Coral voters approved $60 million that went toward the project on a November 2018 ballot, Fox4 Southwest Florida reported.
But now, not all residents are on board.
“This is a microcosm of everything we love about Southwest Florida. It’s all here,” said Mark Giarditti, who moved to Cape Coral a year ago with his family.
“I think it’s an absolute tragedy to try to close this down for two years,” added Giarditti when he spoke with Fox4 Southwest Florida. “It makes you kind of wonder, who is the project for? Because if it’s for the people, then they need to keep this pavilion open.”
Giarditti isn’t the only one who is against the project – as many came out to a public meeting in February to voice their concerns.
Councilman Hayden said the city still has to get permits from the Army Corps of Engineers and Department of Environmental Protection, Fox4 Southwest Florida reported.
“I try to tell residents – yeah, I know it’s going to be a hardship, we get that. But after two years, you’re going to have a jewel. It’s going to be better than it ever was,” said Hayden.
The original plan was to close the yacht club in April and keep it shut down for two years, with only the boathouse restaurant available to people. That initial plan has been pushed back. Some of the city’s plans to renovate the Yacht Club included expanding the beach area, adding new paid parking garages and updating the restrooms.