PINE ISLAND, Fla. – Some residents on Pine Island are concerned that a plan that limits development, may be done away with. They say this would congest the island and change the place they’ve called home for decades.
For more than 20 years, Rachi Farrow has lived on Pine Island.
“Even though I feel like this could be a lost cause, I’m a fighter and I’ll fight anything to end.”
She along with a handful of people who live on the island came together Saturday morning to show support for the plan.
“My fear is that we’re going to be overwhelmed,” said resident Daniel Palma. “That we are going to have highrises, we’re going to have all kids of gated communities.”
The Pine Island plan restricts development. Residents say that allows them to live in a place that doesn’t feel congested, and gives the island a quirky way of life.
“I mean this is the only place I ever seen where you actually see a Rolls-Royce pulling a trailer full of garbage,” said Palma.
But the same plan that protects their island is also the same one that has brought forth eight lawsuits and about 50 other claims against Lee County. Some residents say the plan violates their property rights.
The agriculture giant, King Ranch of Texas, owns land on the island.
“Again this is a land owner issue, not specifically a King Ranch issue. We are ready to collaborate with Lee County to re-evaluate the plan and put new policies in place.”
But these resident’s don’t want to see the plan dumped, they want to see it enforced as it has been for so many years.
“If you want highrises and big developments, go down to Sanibel, or Marco, or Fort Myers,” said resident Pat Johnsen. “Leave this place alone.”