Cape Coral City Hall is located at 1015 Cultural Park Boulevard, Cape Coral, FL 33990.
Cape Coral [†] is situated on the West coast of Florida, and is in one of the fastest-growing counties in Florida and the entire United States (U.S. Census Bureau). Historically, Cape Coral has been known as a place to escape northern winters or relocate upon retirement; however, the past decade has seen Cape Coral emerge into a city that is becoming more youthful, more diverse, and more economically well-rounded. This Economic Development Master Plan is intended to guide the City in its next transition.
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The City of Cape Coral is, by modern standards, a very young city. Consisting of pine woods, marshes and swamplands that were once a part of the Everglades ecosystem, Cape Coral was forever changed upon the introduction of two brothers, Leonard and Jack Rosen. The Rosens, as owners of Gulf American Corporation (GAC), began a process of draining the marshes, constructing miles upon miles of canals, and platting the City into thousands of 5,000 square-foot lots. Cape Coral was originally envisioned and platted to be a bedroom, retirement community that would provide seasonal residents a warm home for escaping the cold, northern winters.
The canals, estimated at more than 400 miles, were an immediate attraction to prospective homebuyers and population growth was steady for the next several decades until a population explosion occurred in the 1990s. Cape Coral incorporated in 1970 and is a principal city within the Cape Coral‑Fort Myers Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). Geographically, the City is one of the largest municipalities in the state of Florida, comprising just over 120 square miles. The City is considered a peninsula, as a significant portion of Cape Coral is bordered by the Caloosahatchee River and Matlacha Pass. Due to its location along major waterfronts and the large amount of navigable waterways, the City is considered a boater's paradise.
While Cape Coral is considered a master‑planned community, the sole focus of the Rosens' efforts was to create a large amount of residential properties, with little forethought given to providing tracts suitable for commercial or industrial development. Since the adoption of the City's Comprehensive Plan in 1989, which recognized a shortage in commercial land, efforts have been made to increase the stock of properties available for non- residential development. The current ratio of residential to non-residential1 areas of land stands at approximately 90% residential to 10% non-residential.
† Cape Coral Economic Development Master Plan, 2017, www.capecoral.net. accessed June, 2021.