Cape Coral asks drivers to point out Pine Island Rd problem areas Thursday

Published: September 22, 2022 5:03 AM EDT
Updated: September 22, 2022 6:25 AM EDT

The City of Cape Coral will host a virtual event on Thursday night where drivers will have the opportunity to shape the future development of Pine Island Road from Nicholas Parkway to Del Prado Boulevard.

That particular stretch of Pine Island Road is already marked by development and new construction. Cape Coral officials want to start planning what that corridor will look like 50 years from now. They want local drivers’ ideas on how to improve the road as far as traffic and safety.

The Florida Department of Transportation is putting on a virtual event for drivers to point out on a map of Pine Island Road where they find problem areas, be they sites of bad congestion or areas that could be made safer for walkers and bikers. This area is exploding so fast that Cape Coral Mayor John Gunter tells WINK News they weren’t supposed to talk about this plan until 2030.

The questions remain: How long will this process take and when will Cape Coral drivers actually see suggested changes being made?

A bike lane along Pine Island Road in Cape Coral. Credit: WINK News

“That planning development engineered (PD&E) study, moving it forward, because we know the need exists today,” Gunter said. “The beginning stage is community input; as you heard here today, we’re starting that process now. That’s the number one step, first, and then there’s many steps to come. But we know, because of the explosive growth in the area, that we have to look at it.”

On your drive to work or to drop the kids off at school, if those take you through Cape Coral, take mental notes of where the problem areas are on Pine Island Road.

“This is going to be a major component, this particular roadway, not only for us, for the residents of Pine on the Matlacha as well, because it’s one way in, one way out for them,” Gunter said. “Developing this plan moving forward is going to be crucial. I believe that we are going to have to add a third lane in each direction. And I think, once we do the study, it’ll show the need for that third lane.”

The virtual event starts at 6 p.m. on the Southwest Florida Roads website. Register for the event beforehand at this link.