Whether or not a gasoline station/convenience store would be built on land
whose owners were seeking rezoning to commercial C-1 took up nearly 90 minutes of time Monday evening as the Cape Coral City Council debated whether the change should be made.
The question involved rezoning lots 23-27, Block 1696 from the
Multi-Family (R-3) to pedestrian commercial (C-1) District. The address is at
801-809 Cape Coral Parkway, West, on the corner of Skyline Boulevard.
In the original request to the Planning and Zoning Commission, property owner Paul H. Kleeman Jr. of Clearwater, Fla., asked that rezoning be made. He and about a half dozen others showed up to convince the council to make the zoning change.
The lots consist mainly of multi-family development and improved properties. To the immediate west of the properties is a parcel owned by the city and has a lift station.
Earlier, the city's Planning and Growth Management Division recommended approval of the request; however, noting it should not be interpreted as an endorsement of the convenience store with a gas station that the applicants first indicated they plan to pursue.
As council members discussed the rezoning bid, John Carioscia said he was one who doesn't want to see it change to commercial.
Commissioner Chris Chulakes-Leetz told his fellow council members that it was not an easy vote.
"I used to live in the area and wished that there had been a convenience store to get to," he said. But Carioscia repeated again that he hoped his fellow board members would support him and vote it down.
Commissioner Marty McClain said he had concerns with a gas station at the site.
"I see commercial there but I cant see a gasoline station."
The change in zoning would allow such things as doctor's offices and other types of small businesses, but not a gas station.
City Attorney Dolores Menendez told council members that they were there to vote to either change the zoning or to reject it. She told them that if owners of the property wanted to build a gas station on the site, they would have to come back to zoning and back to the council and if they didn't want a gas station there, they could veto it.
"It would take a special exception to make that change," she said.
However, the question continued to concern members of the council and the long discussion centered about whether a gas station would be built on the site.
"Rezoning to C-1 is the only issue tonight," Menendez said.
It was noted that there was no outpouring of citizens attending the meeting to object to the zoning change.
Mayor John Sullivan said that while he would vote for the zoning change, he did not favor a gas station on the site and would not support it the issue came back before the council.
The council voted 6 to 2 to change the zoning.