Community voices concerns over Placida fishery project

Charlotte County has plans to tear down the historic Placida Fishing Village and replace it with condos, shops and restaurants.

It’s near the Boca Grande Causeway off of Gasparilla Road. But many in the community say it’s the wrong move to make.

The Placida Fishery and Art Market is a fan favorite for locals and visitors alike.

“I love this area here because this is like old Florida,” said Placida resident Alice Fay.

But that feeling of “Old Florida” could be a thing of the past if this major development goes through.

Dozens of people voiced their displeasure at a Charlotte County planning and zoning board meeting that was standing-room only.

“We come down into this area several times each year that we’re here and we like it the way it is,” said visitor Walter Johnson.

The board is deciding whether to re-zone the area to make way for a project that would change the landscape of the fishery forever.

Developers want to build six-story luxury condominiums with a hotel, restaurant, retail space and an expanded marina.

Most maintain the proposed development isn’t the right fit for the area.

“Most people moved into this area because it’s a quieter area and they don’t want Sarasota development or they’d live in Sarasota,” Fay said.

Others told the board this is the kind of project that’s needed to attract younger people to Charlotte County.