Drivers cut through FMB street to avoid traffic create safety concerns

Reporter: Gina Tomlinson
Fort Myers Beach

Everyone hates the long waits to get off of Fort Myers Beach. But now, drivers have started using Connecticut Street, near the mound house, as a cut through and bypass traffic, leaving many neighbors worrying about their safety.

Even though there is a sign that says “no through traffic,” neighbors say drivers don’t listen.

“I work from home. So, I have my desk, I look right through the window and people with kids and dogs, it’s pretty dangerous,” said neighbor Laurie Carroll.

Carroll says during season, cars come speeding down Connecticut Street.

“People just fly, typically going right through the stop sign,” Carroll said.

Carroll lives right on the corner of Shell Mound Boulevard, near a parking lot for the Mound House Museum. The parking lot has not sidewalks to direct visitors to the museum, and neighbor Forrest Critser says someone is bound to get hurt.

“When we don’t have a place for the children to walk, the bicyclist to ride, there’s cars constantly through here,” Critser said. “We need sidewalks for safety reasons.”

A sidewalk from Estero Boulevard and the Mound House isn’t a new idea, but one the town council has talked about since 2012. Some members debating the sidewalk could stop at Shell Mound Boulevard where cars typically cut through.

“I don’t know why people would not want safety,” Crister said.

Well, some who live further down the street, like Rich Dudley, don’t want concrete running through their front yard.

“Ain’t nobody speeds down here,” Dudley said. “None.”

Other neighbors say local leaders need to keep brainstorming.

“Maybe some speed bumps? Maybe some temporary signs, traps?” Carroll said. “But, it’s really been a problem this winter season.”

Besides the speed limit sign, there are no other signs telling drivers to slow down on Connecticut Street.

The Fort Myers Beach Town Council says it will revisit the sidewalk issue at an upcoming meeting.

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