Seawall repairs might cost Punta Gorda woman $30K

Author: CAMILA PEREIRA Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:

After Hurricane Ian, the seawall in Punta Gorda was destroyed, but the city takes care of the repairs, unlike other cities.

A woman is saying that the city made a mistake during the repair, which will cost her over $30,000 when it should only have been $17,000 for her to fix on her own.

The city said it followed the rules and repaired the seawall as usual. However, in this case, the problem is that the dock was improperly built or connected to the seawall.

Holly McConville moved to Punta Gorda in 2021 and was excited to have a dock in her backyard until Sept. 28, 2022.

“Hurricane Ian destroyed our seawall, and we had a big sinkhole in our backyard, and the city’s responsible for the seawall,” said McConville, “so they finally came a few weeks ago to put in the seawall, and in the process, it’s just been a little frustrating.”

McConville explained the storm only damaged about two-thirds of the dock. Later, when the city fixed the seawall, crews didn’t connect it to McConville’s dock.

“So there was a foot gap between our seawall and our dock, so now we have to replace that other entire piece of dock that we weren’t planning on doing,” said McConville.

McConville’s out-of-pocket cost spiked from $17,000 to $30,000, all because she now needs a new dock.

“I have a handicapped daughter that, you know, we take out on the boat, and we have dogs that could fall in that, that foot gap,” said McConville, “so it’s something that we had to take care of, but we just didn’t have, you know. This is costing us a lot of money, and to have this extra expense right now is really devastating.”

WINK News reached out to Punta Gorda, and that’s when an assistant to the city manager explained that the dock was previously installed incorrectly, going on to say the deck of the dock is supposed to be 15 inches from the top of the seawall.

Nevertheless, McConville maintains the dock was built up to code, and she had no issues with the previous seawall. So, she believes the city made a mistake that will cost her instead of the city.

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