ESTERO, Fla. One of the largest potato farming companies in the Southeast wants to change 1,800 acres of agricultural land into a limestone mine excavation.
Troyer Brothers Florida began to explore the idea of mining when they discovered lime rock on property they own between State Road 82 and Corkscrew Road several miles east of Interstate 75. The Lee County Board of Commissioners will consider some of the company’s proposed land-use amendments in a public hearing to on April 5.
Some nearby residents believe a mine would interfere with their homes.
“Look at how nice and quiet it is,” Sal DiPiazza said. “This is what we came here for. We didn’t come here for another World War II.”
Others are concerned about how a mine might affect animals in this rural part of eastern Lee County.
“The wildlife out here is astounding,” Arvo Rahe said. “We have bears, panthers, turkeys. You name it and we have it out here. I had a bald eagle at the pond yesterday.”
Troyer Brothers Florida plans a natural buffer between the mine and homes, company representatives said. They also plan to turn the mine into a lake once the project is complete.