Published: Aug 12, 2010 11:37 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 12, 2010 8:22 PM EDT

FORT MYERS, Fla. - A private investor out of Colorado is putting down $21 million dollars on the First Street Village development. It's money city leaders hope will finally bring the project to life.

The 12-acre site of First Street Village's riverfront real estate has stood vacant for years, much to the frustration of neighbors bordering the empty lot.

"I hate to see that land just sitting there like that, deteriorating," said concerned resident Ann Myers.

Within the next year, city leaders are hoping to say goodbye to the chain link fence at the proposed site of First Street Village. They say they finally have the money needed to get the project off the ground.

"My understanding is it's pretty much a done deal, everything's pretty much gone through," said Don Paight of the Fort Myers Redevelopment Agency.

Paight said the millions of dollars fronted by the private investor will allow the project to finally begin construction. Still, the seven-story plan originally unveiled, may look a little different.

"At this point, they're going to go back, and take a look at the market. See what the prices are going to be, how many units they feel they could put into it, and they may adjust the amount of retail and commercial space as well," Paight said Thursday.

Permits for the Village's new look are expected to be approved by the beginning of 2011. Developers are looking to build the project in conservative phases, to ensure it doesn't turn into another financial flop.