FORT MYERS, FL (July 25, 2017) – The City of Fort Myers will host an informational workshop on Tuesday, August 1, 2017 to discuss the upcoming environmental site assessment of the seventeen city-owned lots at 3348 South St. in Fort Myers. The open house-style workshop will be held at the Dr. Carrie D. Robinson Center (2990 Edison Ave., Fort Myers) from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
The environmental site assessment is a collaborative effort between the City and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP). FDEP has thoroughly reviewed and approved the plan, which was prepared by GFA International, an engineering and geological consulting organization.
The testing will assess an area where the City deposited lime sludge, a by-product from its drinking water plant, in the 1960s, before the neighborhood was established. In 2007, the sludge was determined to contain an environmental contaminant, arsenic. Since that time, the City and the DEP have been monitoring the groundwater. The most recent test results, collected in October 2016, indicate that the groundwater is not a risk to human health and the environment.
At the August 1 workshop, the City and project partners will provide information about the testing work plan. Citizens will have an opportunity to discuss the work plan, ask questions about the site assessment, and offer comments before testing begins. The work plan can be viewed online at the project website (www.3348SouthStreet.com) or at the following locations:
Fort Myers City Hall (first floor reception desk), 2200 Second Street, Fort Myers, FL 33901
Dr. Ann Murphy Knight S.T.A.R.S. Complex, 2980 Edison Ave, Fort Myers, FL 33916
The work plan will be available for review through August 15, 2017,
Citizens may also submit questions or comments about the work plan through the project website, www.3348SouthStreet.com, or by calling the city at (239) 321-7630. Comments and questions also will be accepted via mail. Concerned citizens may send a letter to the City of Fort Myers, c/o Richard Thompson, PO Box 2217, Fort Myers, FL 33902. Comments must be received by August 15, 2017.
After community input is received, a final testing plan will be developed and reviewed by FDEP before the site assessment begins.
The testing plan also includes a well survey. Lee County Public Utilities has provided drinking water to this neighborhood since 1975. However, some residents have private irrigation wells. Others may still be utilizing wells for drinking water despite the availability of a public water supply. Residents who utilize a well within a quarter-mile of the site are asked to provide permission for well testing by contacting the city at the information above.
Once environmental site testing begins, it will take approximately six weeks to receive the results, which will be presented to the community in another public workshop.
Testing of the site is the second phase in the City’s long-term remediation plan for the South Street properties. Once the extent of the potential contamination is evaluated, the City will solicit further public input to review potential physical remediation options and determine potential future uses for the site.