SUBJECT: Alternate Concept for the Transportation Element
Preparation of a transportation element for your new comprehensive plan has still not begun.
On April 8, the Local Planning Agency reviewed the two proposals that had been solicited
from engineering firms to create this element. Both were rejected due to their high cost and
the fact that they would not analyze commonly suggested ideas such as better bicycle paths,
water taxis, increased marina capacity, reversible lanes on the bridge, selective widening of
Estero Boulevard, or dedicated transit lanes. Both proposals were primarily aimed at
meeting the state's minimum requirements for a transportation element rather than attempting
toprovide substantive help to the town in reducing congestion or in improving mobility.
The LPA decided to drop the idea of subcontracting the entire transportation element to an
engineering firm, and requested an alternate proposal from Spikowski Planning Associates
that would include the following ingredients:
The focus of the element would be on personal mobility, rather than enhancing the
capacity of the road network.
Any Rule 9J-5 requirements that may not be directly applicable to the Town would be
minimized (or eliminated entirely); any DCA objections to this approach would be
dealt with by the Town at that time.
A citizen's committee would work with the consulting team to identify potential
improvements in traffic flow and management and to review the consultants'
The LPA would invite the Chamber of Commerce traffic committee to appoint a
special subcommittee of those members most interested in Estero Island traffic
problems and solutions. The LPA chairman would appoint an official liaison to this
subcommittee and additional members as he sees fit.
This subcommittee would meet at Town Hall (or another central location of its
Background material would be copied by the Town and left in mail slots for members'
review (in the same manner as for LPA packets).
Four structured subcommittee meetings are anticipated, at monthly intervals and
beginning in about 30 days. At each meeting, members would critique written material
prepared by the consultants and would focus on specific transportation problems and
opportunities in a specific geographic area (e.g., Time Square, mid-island, north end,
Direct community assistance in data collection could take two forms. One or more members
could agree to field-verify the exact location and/or dimensions of physical improvements on
the island (sidewalks, turning lanes, trolley pull-offs, etc.). Or on a larger scale, members of
the subcommittee may be willing to conduct a survey of island businesses. This would
identify typical travel patterns of their employees and obtain reactions to some potential
alternatives to reduce the number of vehicles on the road during the peak season.
This proposal was designed to stay within your maximum budget of $45,000. To do so, we
have not been able to include any additional work on traffic-calming techniques. Walter
Kulash has agreed to assist us on this matter (or any other portion of this element), but that
expense would have to be budgeted separately. Most standard traffic calming techniques are
designed for local streets and would not be applicable along Estero Boulevard. Our real
need is for custom engineering design of typical roadway cross-sections for different portions
of the Estero Boulevard, showing street trees, curbs, sidewalks, and on-street parking near
We will discuss this alternative concept at your meeting at 7:00 P.M. on May 6.
Alternate Concept for Transportation Element
Draft April 28, 1997
Provide an inventory of major roads, bridges, bike/ped. facilities, trolley routes, trolley
pull-offs, center turning lanes, bike/pedestrian paths, boat ramps, and boat slips (a
series of maps depicting existing transportation conditions).
Summarize existing data on tourist volumes, modes of travel, typical length of stay,
and seasonal fluctuations.
Summarize data gathered by others on traffic crashes, traffic counts, turn movements,
modal split, etc.
Local Transportation Problems
Summarize existing data on the adequacy of the local transportation network,
including levels of service and seasonal congestion.
Identify traffic conflicts caused by direct property access, frequent intersections, and
public beach access points along Estero Blvd.
Contrast travel behavior during peak and off-peak periods, including interface
between various modes of travel.
Summarize the chronic shortage of parking facilities in peak season based on the
1993 core area inventory by Florida Transportation Engineering, with particular
emphasis on the needs of small businesses lacking the space to provide enough
Summarize the adequacy of evacuation routes based on the 1995 study by the
Southwest Florida Regional Planning Council.
Analyze the adequacy of the existing bike/ped. network; identify gaps and potential
funding sources for their completion.
Transportation Analyses Required by Rule 9J-5.019(3), including
existing Levels of Service (LOS), vehicle trips, and major trip generators (all based on
available data, including FTE's February 1993 reports Traffic Volume and Capacity
on Estero Island and Traffic Origin and Destination Survey) and 1995 report Estero
Boulevard Corridor Study.
availability of transportation facilities to serve existing land uses;
growth trends and interactions between land use and transportation and compatibility
between future land uses and transportation elements;
existing and projected intermodal deficiencies;
projected transportation system levels of service and system needs, and need for new
compatibility with policies of FDOT Adopted Work Program, MPO, and Lee DOT;
how the Town can maintain adopted levels of service.
Fort Myers Beach Transportation Planning Options
Assess the feasibility of supply-side (capital intensive) transportation improvements
such as limited widening of Estero Blvd. or an additional bridge (particularly their
respective rights-of-way and environmental implications).
Consider the feasibility of transportation improvements such as reversible lanes (in lieu
of breakdown lanes) on the Matanzas Pass Bridge.
Evaluate roadway maintenance options including potential turnover of Estero Blvd by
Summarize Times Square public parking options: surface vs. garage cost differentials;
design alternatives; public vs. private funding; land purchase vs. lease; shared parking
scheme in WRT's 1993 Core Area Master Plan.
Evaluate the feasibility of Bowditch Point boat ramp/dockage & public parking,
Describe innovative law enforcement measures such as video cameras, bike patrols,
Evaluate recent signage improvements, monitor their effectiveness, and explore
Assess the potential for Single Occupant Vehicles (SOV ) "trip Interceptors" such as
off-island boat ramps, transit parking, bike/ped. network, etc.
Assess the potential for inter-island trip conversions to alternate modes (e.g. water
taxi, trolley, bike, or foot).
Identify issues & opportunities for transportation to and from concentrated nodes of
activity (e.g. Times Square, Bowditch Point, Villa Santini).
Describe desirable integration between alternate travel modes and other
improvements proposed in the community design element.
Identify Possible Courses of Action for the Town of Fort Myers Beach
Develop public/private partnerships and business incentives for the use of High
Occupancy Vehicles (HOV).
Consider feasibility of HOV lanes to accommodate transit/trolley ridership and
Identify potential disincentives for SOV, such as SOV parking surcharge, HOV
parking preference, HOV preferred customer discounts.
Promote alternate travel modes through public assistance to water taxi facilities,
transit/trolley pull-offs, beach access points including bike/ped. facilities
Develop funding mechanisms for the routine maintenance and operation of pavement
systems and cyclical reconstruction.
Organize a transportation management association to implement TDM measures and
recruit public/private sectors membership and secure funding.
Establish a parking district or association to facilitate cooperative/shared parking
agreements (dual use and reciprocal parking), conduct routine physical inventory,
control revenue systems and rate structures, hours of operation, length of stay
Proposed Goals/Objectives/Policies to:
Improve the safety & mobility of residents and tourists and increase the efficiency of
the transportation network through TDM and other measures.
Better manage the congested roadways that are inevitable during the peak season
Integrate transportation policies with the community design objectives of the
Develop bike/ped. circulation plan to capitalize on the bike and foot traffic potential.
Identify an appropriate "level-of-service" for roadways.
Prepare other goals and objectives required by state statutes and rules.