Cape Coral leaders are working to protect canals from blue-green algae

As the algae crisis on the river grows, leaders in Cape Coral are working ahead to protect the Cape’s canals.

In 2018, thick blue-green algae took over homeowners’ canals which and it nearly impossible to rent out condos to summer visitors.

Blue-green algae is Peter Formica’s worst nightmare. “You couldn’t leave your windows open or anything like that. The stink was so bad. It was terrible,” Formica said.

Not only did the green gunk and awful smell threaten his and everyone else’s health, but the algae also put a dent in his wallet.

“It was hard on me because I own units here that I use as rentals and when this got out to all the northern states nobody wants to come to Cape Coral,” Formica said.

Formica hopes he won’t have to relive his nightmare again this summer.

As a Southwest Florida real estate broker, Jason Jakus’ job is to sell the positives of living or vacationing along the water.

“A consumer that comes down here does not want that in their backyard or near their home. There’s obviously concerns with regards to health,” Jakus said.

“I think it will turn people off just by having another major incident like we had back in 2018,” said Jakus.

These days, the real estate market in Cape Coral is booming. But, that could change if blue-green algae shows up in Cape Coral’s canals.

Luckily, it hasn’t happened yet and Jakus and Formica hope it stays that way. “If we get a boost back of the green algae and it causes problems I think you’re going to have some people that change their mind about coming back here and go look for a different spot,” Formica said.

And, if that happens, Cape Coral will deal with a different kind of nightmare.

Real estate experts say, right now, they’re continuing to see a market boom. And, that housing inventory is getting better.

Reporter:Brea Hollingsworth
Writer:Drew Hill
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