05/10/2013 at 11:25pm
Natural Gas Line Coming to Beach
TECO Peoples Gas has notified the Town of Fort Myers Beach that it will begin preliminary work to locate utilities along Estero Boulevard between the bridge and Donora Blvd between May 14 and June 4. TECO plans to install a natural gas main along the Gulf side of Estero Blvd. Town officials note that they have no indication as to when the actual installation work will begin.
According to an email from Cathie Lewis, Public Works Director for the Town of Fort Myers Beach, TECO realizes that when the Estero Boulevard project moves into the area, the gas main would likely need to be relocated. But TECO reps have said that they understand this. Based on the number of service requests within the area, they believe they will be in a position to relocate the line when the time comes.
Town representatives have expressed concern with the TECO plan based on the proximity of the island water distribution lines. As a result Lee County agreed to require a Right of Way permit prior to allowing TECO to begin their exploratory work (soft digs.) TECO now has that permit and will begin the work May 14th.
Beach Water plans to stand by during this project due to the proximity of the water lines. The Town also expects some traffic flow disruption, as the southbound lane will need to be closed in the area TECO is working.The preliminary plan notes that TECO will be digging in about 50 locations between Center St. and Donora Blvd, but it could be more.
Lee County is hoping to use the data produced by the soft digs along with the survey pins that TECO is required to set at each location to develop a vertical survey of the area.This may assist the Town and County with locating existing underground infrastructure.
Once the soft digs and survey work is complete, TECO plans to work further on the design of the project and submit it to the County for permitting. TECO has expressed the desire to construct the line prior to the beginning of season and after the wet season.
Town Manager Terry Stewart notes that the Town does not know if any property owners have been notified along the route. In a May 9th email, he notes that since the work will be done within the County ROW, the county has authority over the work.