Proposed safety measures for downtown Fort Myers

Reporter: Claire Galt Writer: Paul Dolan
Ideas proposed to increase safety in downtown Fort Myers. (CREDIT: WINK News)

The city council wants changes to downtown Fort Myers, the goal is to protect people and put in new rules similar to one major Florida city.

Johnny Streets, Jr. is a Fort Myers city councilman, and he shared some thoughts with WINK News.

“The idea is to have people feel safe, right? There’s no foolproof anything. But we want to be as close as we can to having things the way it should be,” Streets said.

The obvious answer is Sunday’s shooting on Second Street in downtown Fort Myers. But, in talking with members of the city council, maybe there’s more to it.

Some see downtown as an investment they absolutely must protect, while others think there’s no time to waste doing exactly that.

Sunday’s shooting may have become the last straw, and now there won’t be any more silence.

Councilman Streets told me he’s going to talk and keep talking about safety in downtown Fort Myers.

“We’ve got to be relentless,” Streets said.

Streets is a former Fort Myers police officer who believes the city must send a decisive message quickly.

“Anybody that thinks that they can come down here and wreak havoc and cause hail, that is not going to happen,” Streets said.

Wednesday Streets met with city attorney Grant Alley, city manager Mary Lawing, and members of the Fort Myers Police Department.

Passing an entertainment ordinance based on the city of Orlando was at the top of his list.

It would look like drones, checkpoints, parking restrictions, an on-call LCSO helicopter, brighter lights, and monitoring noise levels all in place to keep visitors safe and criminals away.

“Even if you commit a heinous crime, and you’re brought to justice, you may not be able to come back downtown anymore,” Streets said.

One of his biggest supporters is councilman Liston Bochette.

“We want people to know we mean business,” Bochette said.

Thursday, Bouchette will meet with business owners, Fort Myers police, and others critical to making downtown safe and secure. Although, not everyone on the council is in agreement with the proposed plan.

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