Growing pains: Collier County sees 50 percent increase in building permits

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Five new hotels are slated to be built and two existing ones will be expanded in Collier County.

In total, there will be well over 500 more rooms, and some people are not a big fan of hotels coming into their neighborhood.

But it’s a reality people living in Collier have to get used to.

Mark Alterio said “This area is growing and there’s probably some need for a hotel in this area.”

In fact, it’s a huge need.

The visitor’s bureau reports this past February, 94 percent of hotels in the county were full. That’s a seven-percent increase from last year.

Plus the county tells us they’ve received over 6,000 building permits — a 50-percent increase from last year.

“It’ll be a nuisance we’ll probably just have to deal with,” Alterio added. Even though it’s coming, he still doesn’t want the hotel in his Lely neighbrohood. “It brings more transient people, people who are here for a night or two into the neighborhood, and this is more of a residential area. We have more monthly renters and vacationers.

Laura knudson of Hoots Breakfast and Lunch said “In Naples we’re a tourist town, so we count on people staying at our hotels.”

“Definitely will mean more space for more people, and that means good for restaurants and that means that hopefully next season we will be even more busy than this season,” Knudson said.

Collier County wants to let neighbors know they have them in mind when accepting permits and building new hotels.

A long term transportation plan is in place, looking at how to accommodate the traffic new developments will bring.

More hotels means more tourist tax money and more business for restaurants.

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