City Council unanimously approved a one-year contract extension with the city's vacant lot mowing contractor at Monday's regular meeting in City Hall.
Contractors CBI Inc. and Montgomery Mowing Services will continue in their current contracts with the city. CBI mows all vacant property north of Pine Island Road at a cost of $1.71 per lot while Montgomery mows south of Pine Island Road at a cost of $2.69 per lot. Those are the same rates listed in the original three-year contract. The total cost to the city is $2 million per year and paid from the lot mowing fund.
Cape Coral's Utilities Depart-ment sought and was granted council approval to piggyback the city of Naples' current contract with Insituform Technologies for pipe relining services. The department needs 28,000 linear feet of gravity sewer mains in lift station 109 to be cleaned and internally lined to maintain the pipe's integrity for years to come. The estimated cost is not to exceed $1.5 million with a 5 percent city controlled contingency.
Council also declared a small triangular shaped parcel of property adjacent to a canal bridge as unusable surplus property no longer needed by the city. The parcel, located at 2101 S.W. 44th Terrace will be conveyed to Coral-Cape Coral LLC and a seawall constructed there. Transferring the parcel to private ownership also allows the city to collect taxes on the property.
A second city parcel at 811 Cape Coral Parkway, West, currently used for a utilities lift station, was rezoned from multi-family residential (R-3) to professional office (P-1) to match the designated land use and adjoining property to the west, which is in the early stages of being developed for multi-occupant professional offices. The adjoining property to the east has been approved for a 7-1Elevven gas and convenience store on the corner of Skyline Boulevard.
City planner Mike Struve called the ordinance a matter of housekeeping as the city has no plans to develop or use the property except for the lift station.
"It's about 5,400 square feet, too narrow and does not have the depth to be useful," said Struve. "The zoning change to P-1 is most appropriate for the land use designation as it is bordered by commercial and professional projects."
The city's five-year capital improvement element of the comprehensive plan had its first public hearing Monday night. An ordinance is required to amend the plan by extending it for the capital improvements schedule through 2019 and adoption of the Lee County School District's five-year district facilities work program through 2018.
The second public hearing is set for March 24
A room addition to the Freida B. Smith Special Populations Center at 410 Santa Barbara Blvd. was formally opened with a ribbon-cutting ceremony last week. Council unanimously approved a resolution naming the addition as the Sara Sansone Special Populations Room.
The room was built through the generous donation of $25,000 by the Fred Mohr family with about 40 members of the Cape Coral Construction Industry Association contributing more than $60,000 in labor and materials for the project.
It honors Sansone, who has served the city and those citizens with special needs for more than 20 years. Sansone has worked throughout her tenure to solicit donations to the Special Pops program and the Guardian Angels for Special Pops.
Council recognized two employees for 15 years of service to the community. The awards went to Parks & Recreation director Steve Pohlman and officer Curt Suskevich, a weapons and training expert at the Cape Coral Police Department.
The next meeting of City Council is March 17.