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Lee County Laundromat reopens in South Cape

August 16, 2019
By KATIE EGAN ( , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Lee County Laundromat burned down last December in the middle of the night.

It's now back up and running, but the fire didn't stop owner Laura Bartling from making sure her customers' orders were completed.

"I had to do something, she said. "I have a lot of business customers that I've had for numerous years. I'd be leaving all my customers in a very bad situation, which I was not going to do.

"From the night of the fire, I still picked up my customers' stuff," she said. "From the night of the fire on, I have not stopped working. If my business customers didn't have their stuff, they wouldn't be able to work."

Lee County Laundromat was originally at 516 S.E. 47th Terrace, in South Cape.

"Once I had the fire, I realized I couldn't go back in that location," Bartling said.

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The electrical fire happened around 1 a.m.

"As far as I know, someone was in the area and smelled smoke or saw smoke," she said. "A man called 911 and a police officer nearby tried to put it out."

Bartling hoped there would be some salvageable stuff, but the smoke did more damage to the equipment than the fire.

"The fire was contained and put out fairly quickly, but unfortunately when everything was sprayed with water, all of the equipment got ruined."

Now Lee County Laundromat is located at 1327 Lafayette St., not too far from the store's previous location, in South Cape.

After the fire, Bartling worked around the clock for the next couple of months to get everything up and running again.

She had to order new supplies. And after the fire, on Dec. 29 or 30, Bartling had to get stuff over-nighted, washed and to her clients in time for them to open after the holiday, so they could continue their businesses.

"I lost so much in the fire of their linens," she said. "I had to pick up the pieces. I wasn't going to leave my business customers from all these years high and dry."

Lee County Laundromat reopened at the end of July.

Bartling said the city of Cape Coral worked with her and helped her get her feet back on the ground.

"From the end of April to July is how long it took to reopen," she said.

When Bartling looks back, she admits it was a lot of work.

But she couldn't have done it without her customers.

"We've definitely built a close bond. I could never do it without them."

Summer hours for the laundromat are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Saturday. It's closed Sunday. For additional information, call (239) 542-2755.

As a grand reopening special, customers get $10 off any service.



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