Note: This article was originally posted on NBC-2.com.
By Gage Goulding, NBC 2 Fort Myers
Tue October 4, 2022
FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla. — Amid all the destruction and devastation on Fort Myers Beach, a condo building deemed ‘vulnerable’ by engineers is still standing. The Leonardo Arms condo number two at the south end of Estero Island is badly beaten and bruised. “It’s still standing, but you can see right through it,” John Galataro said, a resident of Fort Myers Beach. NBC2’s Gage Goulding has been following the battle residents have had to build a seawall.
A seawall wouldn’t have stopped the catastrophic storm surge, but it could’ve helped prevent the loss of the entire beach. Galataro said residents have been trying to get permission to build a seawall for their building’s protection, but because of turtle season, all they could use were sandbags. Now after Hurricane Ian’s demolition through Fort Myers Beach, just inches of sand stand between the condo building and the Gulf. “Now the problem is, they’re all stuck up there because all the stairwells are washed out. And they’re all falling into the water,” Galataro said.