Cape Coral homeowner forced to remove stones that keep her driveway from flooding

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A woman, tired of the flooding by her front door, decided to fix the problem on her own with stepstones.

Now the City of Cape Coral wants those stones removed.

Sierra Szalay lives on Northwest 15th Street in Cape Coral. She said the flooding happens almost every day in front of her home.

In August, Cape Coral Code Officer sent Szalay a notice to remove the stones.

Flooding in front of Szalay’s home (CREDIT: WINK News)

Szalay said she moved to this home a few months ago but didn’t know how bad the flooding was.

“I have to literally take my shoes and socks off to cross my driveway. I do have a 1-year-old, and she has actually fallen in the water, trying to get in and out of the vehicle,” Szalay said.

Tired of walking through stormwater, Szalay put stones along her driveway.

Step stones Szalay put in place for flooding (CREDIT: WINK News)

She said they helped her deal with the flooding, but now the City of Cape Coral has told her they’ve got to go.

“For you to tell me to move my stepstones that are actually helping my family and helping the water drain really upset me. We try to make it easier for us and to be safer not flooding or walking through disgusting water,” Szalay said.

Neighbors said this type of notice isn’t unusual for the neighborhood. They say a code enforcement officer drives through a lot.

WINK News reached out to code enforcement to see why her stones were a problem.

They said nothing is allowed to be placed in the swale of a home because it changes elevation levels.

Neighbors said they aren’t bothered by the stones, but they agree she should still move them. They just hope the city gives her enough time to make the change.

Myrta Zelaynandia, a Cape Coral resident said, “She doesn’t bother us or anything like that. You know there’s other things that are more important than that.”

The city told WINK News the case was closed after the code enforcement officer educated the homeowner about the swale issue.

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