Florida

SWFL Hurricane Shelter Uses Grants for More Fortresses

Fort myers

With six weeks remaining in the 2021 hurricane season, Lee County secures emergency shelters, especially in the Hertz Arena and Alico Arena, which are considered major shelters in southwestern Florida.

For one thing, they could both accommodate a large number of people, and Hearts was actually the largest shelter in Lee County, accommodating about 6,000 during Hurricane Irma. Another reason is that both arenas are in close proximity to the I-75. This means that people can act as shelters when they need to evacuate from other parts of Florida.

The proposed work will cure the roofs, windows and doors of both arenas, paying $ 4.5 million to Hertz and $ 2.8 million to Ariko. The money comes from a Florida Office of Economic Opportunity grant.

Craig Brush, president of Hertz Arena, says the structure is already safe, but anything is open to make it even safer.

“We’ve been in business since 1998, so things change a bit,” says Brush. “From the point of view of security we can provide, it is welcomed by us. We are here to assist and we accept as many people as possible.”

Brush remembers how the community became dependent on the arena during Hurricane Irma.

“Basically there were as many as 6000 people here,” Brush said. “There was a person who was actually sleeping in the office. Basically, you feed people non-stop because it’s lunch time after breakfast … there are a lot of people here. We have fulfilled our duty. We are happy and proud to be able to do it. “

The Lee County Commission will vote for approval of the project’s funding agreement at a meeting on Tuesday morning.

SWFL Hurricane Shelter Uses Grants for More Fortresses

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