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No, southwest Cape residents are not satisfied with the city’s plans for Sands Park

December 6, 2019
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

To the editor:

The position of the of the majority of the 685 members of the SWCCAC (Southwest Cape Coral Action Committee) are considerably different than what was presented in the Breeze article published Wednesday "Council OKs neighborhood parks plan." Additionally the low turnout at the Monday Council meeting is due to the fact that The Parks Agenda was buried on page five of the Agenda under 11B. I am in no way saying that The Breeze was inaccurate in its coverage of the meeting, however there is much more to the story.

The SWCCAC Leadership has meet with Mayor, Council Members and Parks Department Officials on many occasions with the following concerns:

n The manner in which the city surveyed Cape Coral residents

The survey data gathered by the city for Neighborhood Parks did not differentiate park feedback based on address or ZIP code. The city defines Neighborhood Parks as Parks designed to serve 1 2 mile radius, that being said this radius may be as much as 3 to 4 miles. When responding to the City Surveys residents were allowed to vote on all Neighborhood Parks thus residents living 25 plus miles away from Sands Park could vote on Sands Park amenities. This makes no sense as residents living this distance from a Neighborhood Park would likely never use the park.

SWCCAC executed its own Survey and feels results were very relevant and highly valuable. As always, our surveys are created and executed with the highest level of integrity utilizing Survey Monkey which is an industry leading provider of Internet surveys. Our membership is a remarkable 680-plus members strong today (In just eight short months of existence). The Survey resulted in a participation rate of 47% (305 members), which is more than triple the national average for an internet based survey.

n Sands Park

Survey results done specifically in the southwest Cape overwhelming showed that southwest Cape residents are not interested in either pickleball and basketball as it relates to Sands Park. As I stated on behalf of the residents of the SW Cape at both Council and Neighborhood Park meetings, a neighborhood park like Sands is not a reasonable place for these types of activities and we must be considerate to our residents that live in such close proximity of the park.

n Burrowing Owls Habitat

We believe strongly that the Sands Park can be designed around our Owls habitat. Park amenities and walkways can be designed around the existing owl burrows. Be assured that most, if not all, residents feel strongly that we must maintain our owls' homes. We have been told that the cost of the mitigation fee to Florida Fish and Wildlife, along with the cost for additional environmental agent fees can be very costly.

n In closing we have asked the city to:

Consider the removal of the both the basketball and pickleball courts at Sands Park as the residents of the southwest Cape voted overwhelming "NO" on both in the survey conducted by the SWCCAC. At the very least please remove the basketball courts; these would save $25K plus that could be used elsewhere.

Randy C. Landers

President

www.swccac.com

Editor's note: The story has been updated to clarify that it was residents in attendance at the meeting who did not voice opposition to the plans for Sands.

 
 
 

 

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