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More green spaces will be coming to the village of Estero. Village Council voted Wednesday to purchase a 10-acre vacant property at the east end of Broadway Avenue as well as a 10-acre site on Williams Road with the intention of creating parks, walking trails and areas for public sports uses.

The $1.2 million purchase of River Oaks on Broadway Avenue prevented the property from being developed from multi-family or single-family homes. It contains oak hammocks, pine and palm trees and will eventually be used as a passive park with walking trails for residents. The creation of a stormwater pond and bypass ditch around Country Creek will prevent backups and flooding during major storm events, council members said.

Council members approved the purchase of the Gess Family Partnership and Gulf Coast Driving Range-owned property west of Estero Community Park and Estero High School for $4.25 million. It is the last remaining parcel along Williams Road bordering the public property owned by the School District of Lee County and Lee County Parks and Recreation. It has the potential for public sports uses, council members said.

The 30-acre Estero on the River property south of the Estero River will be rezoned. Currently zoned for mixed-use and the village-owned Happehatchee property that splits it zoned for agriculture, council members voted to approve the initiation of rezoning and comprehensive plan amendment to permanently preserve the property for parks and community facilities. Then new zoning is specific for publicly owned property and allows for active and passive recreation, preserved lands and civic uses. The process involves state review and approval could take 4-6 months.

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