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Old Golf course

January 12, 2018
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

To the editor:

I am extremely energized to write to the people of Southwest Florida to save the Cape Coral Golf Course. The other night I heard the coyote pup barking and singing. And I live six blocks from the course. It literally lit up my life. To hear a wild animal on the course surrounded by thousand of houses was fantastic.

Every person that loves wildlife needs to get on the band wagon and support Lee County's 20/20 land buying program in buying the course or the county procuring it.

There are three ways the county could purchase it: Through 20/20 funds, Lee County Parks and Rec could buy it, or the county could procure it like they did get Edison Farms. Then we could preserve the course for all the wild animals that live there If the county handed over the golf course to 20/20 to maintain, it would save the city thousands in taxes over the years to maintain it.

Why do we need to preserve it for the wildlife? Our children and their children will benefit from seeing the wildlife as will tourists and the residents. Wildlife viewing is a $2 billion- plus industry in the world. Thousands of people that visit the Cape every year would flock to the park to see the wildlife. There are five endangered or threatened species on the golf course. The American Kestrel, the Miami butterfly, the tri colored heron, gopher tortoise and burrowing owls live there. Other animals living on the land are fox, bobcat, otter, great horned owls, eagles, squirrels, rabbits, ducks (to include Muscovy) and butterflies. The bird count two years ago produced about 50 species of birds and 15 kinds of butterflies.

If there is going to be any commercial development, the city must work to save all of this wildlife. Be advised - the bobcat, fox and coyotes will need at least 160 acres to be preserved and not driven off.

How do we derive revenue on the course? Any bike riders, joggers, birders and fishermen could pay an annual fee for using the biking, hiking trails, ponds and general use of the park. A modest fee for one-day visitors could be charged. Use dispensers to collect the money like Ding Darling. Fees could be charged for camping and pavilion use for picnics, etc.

A proposal would be for $10 million from the county and $2 million from the city to buy the property. Then there could be a cooperative partnership between the two, which would be a win-win between both entities. Then Cape Coral could control some of the park. What a great way to build a senior center and boys and girls club. There could be indoor tennis courts, handball, pickle ball, pool, hall card room, basketball court, meeting rooms and maybe a thousand seat theater to rival other theaters in the area. A five star restaurant, pool, putting green and a snack bar could be some other things the city could spearhead.

We could introduce deer, quail, hogs and other wild animals to make a Florida wildlife zoo. Another revenue item for this land.

If you support the 20/20 program or the county to buy the old golf course or just to buy it as a park, please contact through email or phone these council people: Jennifer Nelson, and D.Stokes, . You may call them at 239-574-0436.

No new taxes if the county buys it!

Carl Veaux

I speak for all the wild animals

Cape Coral



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