Swale Problems


This is in response to the Town Council’s approval to allocate $393,578 for stormwater design. The following is a cautionary tale!

I live on Mid Island Drive. In 2001, due to repeat flooding, the Town installed a combination of pipes and open swales to protect homes on grade. The swales are located on Town property. This system worked as intended and prevented flooding for several years. That is, until some homeowners decided to fill in their swales for added parking. Since then, the flooding that plagued our street has returned!

I notified the Town a year ago, following yet another flooding event. I have had discussions, as well as meetings with several Town employees, who have inspected the filled in swales that prevent the system from working. The Town had chosen to ignore the situation.

No one seems to care that homeowners filled in swales that our tax dollars paid for!

The solution is simple and would cost the Town nothing! Cite those homeowners, as the cost to reopen the swales is their financial responsibility. Unfortunately, the Town doesn’t care and declined to take any action.

Why would the Town install swales on other flood prone streets when they are unable to control the failed system on our street? Think about it!


Tom Ball
Fort Myers Beach