Fort Myers construction sites investigated for Caloosahatchee runoff

Reporter: Stephanie Byrne Writer: Joey Pellegrino
Published: Updated:
Photo of stormwater runoff into the Caloosahatchee River from Aug. 22. Credit: John Cassani

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is investigating new reports of stormwater runoff from the City Walk and Silver Hills projects into the Caloosahatchee River.

“This is the second incident of this construction site runoff problem,” said Calusa Waterkeeper John Cassani. “Suspended sediments, you know, they create some problems for anything that breathes with gills or is a filter-feeding mechanism such as bivalves, and clams, and oysters. If the turbidity lasts a long time, it could cause some issues for the plants growing underneath or in the vicinity.”

The DEP came to the site earlier this week and told the groups to make repairs where necessary, and work to prevent further discharges.

According to documents, the DEP has fined Silver Hills $4,900 and City Walk more than $56,000 for penalties, costs and expenses.

Fort Myers stormwater officials are working with both the DEP and contractors at the site to prevent future issues. Neither developer could be reached for comment.

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