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Collier commission approves bid for 160 apartments, arts center near Sugden Park

Businesses are excited to see more people in East Naples. But people who use nearby Sugden Park as an escape are worried all that traffic is going to ruin the integrity of the area.

More residential builds in Collier County is not something everyone in the area wants to see.

Collier County commissioners approved a bid Tuesday to build more than 160 apartments and a possible visual arts center on 17 acres of land off Bayshore Drive.

The mini-village would also back up to Sugden Park.

“I don’t like the idea of having the opera house over here, i just like it the way it is,” said
part-time resident Tony Szymanoski. He doesn’t want the opera house to go inside the park – a proposal made by some commissioners. “It’s great for relaxing, walking, riding our bikes. We come here more than any other place besides the beach,” Szymanoski said.

“It’s gonna be great, people will get to see the area, I feel like its an understated area of Naples,” siad Ashley Howe, CEO of Naples Outfitters which is just across US-41, she thinks the area needs the boost said the build will enhance the area. “Local business, community, music, it’s great to see that coming here. They don’t have to go to Fifth Avenue or the Mercato that get all that stuff here,” Howe said.

However, there’s also some traffic concerns for this project. Fitting 160 rental units and a performing arts center within 17 acres of space could cause a nightmare for drivers along 41.

Reporter:Hannah Vogel
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