Cape Coral, Florida

Cape Coral Florida is a pre-platted, thoroughly planned community which started in the 1950s and continues to roar into the 21st century as a haven for vacationers, families and professionals alike. Regardless of whether or not Florida is booming, this city seems to thrive. As Cape Coral has grown with the times, people have flooded into the area, making it grow dramatically in just over 50 years into the top 20 places in Florida by population.

With over 350 days a year of sunshine, this city really puts a whole new shine on Florida's motto of being the Sunshine State. If you want to get a tan, get in a great workout or get a tasty meal, this is the place for you. Cape Coral is more than just a tourism-based economy, as roughly 80% of the city's residents are permanent and live there all year round. With so many great things to do in the area, who would ever want to leave the place?

Welcome to the city of Cape Coral, where you will be able to make just about anything happen. There are intriquing options in entertainment, education, affordable living and many other benefits the city offers its residents. Many businesses in the city also thrive.

Cape Coral History

Cape Coral Florida was originally organized in the year 1957. At the time, the real estate developers Leonard and Jack Rosen bought a 103 square mile tract which was then known as Redfish Point for around $678,000. In 1958, the men began to develop the entire area as a pre-platted and master-planned community built for growth. The development process spurred the creation of the Gulf American Corporation or GAC, which began to develop the area in earnest. The company began to dig a massive number of canals, paved a multitude of streets and built a huge number of both houses and business buildings. Like many Floridian developments, Cape Coral was advertised and promoted to the sky in a unique marketing effort.

The area is known locally as "The Cape," and celebrities during the early days were brought in to advertise and talk about how beneficial and great the entire area is. The first building to be constructed in this massive project was the Rosen company headquarters, which sits at the corner of Cape Coral Parkway and Coronado. The first person to reside in the city permanently was Kenny Schwartz, the general manager for the Rosens. The first four homes within Cape Coral's city limits were finished in 1958, on the streets known as Riverside Drive and Flamingo Drive.

During the 1960s development continued at the same rapid pace, and much of it was centered on Redfish Point, south of the Cape Coral Parkway. The population began to bloom in 1963, with the population nearing the 3,000 mark across 1,300 buildings. By that point the GAC had paved 80 miles of roads and dug 160 miles of canals. By that point there was a medical clinic, a public yacht club and a shopping center serving the population, as well. By 1964, the area even had its own bridge across the Caloosahatchee River, eliminating a difficult trek to Fort Myers by way of Del Prado Boulevard and the Edison Bridge.

In spite of all of this development, the city of Cape Coral was not formally incorporated until 1970. During the city's early years, it was known primarily for being a community which held a large number of retired people. As the construction and population boom of the 1990s really kicked in, however, a lot of professional people and their fairly young families began to flood the scene. Today, seasonal residents do account for around 20 percent of the population, but younger permanent residents are also a major source of the population.

About Cape Coral, Florida

The city of Cape Coral, Florida is a town located in Lee County, and from the very beginning its design has been extremely intentional and built for growth and prosperity. By the year 2010, the city had grown to have a population of over 154,000 people within it. Along this area of 120 square miles, Cape Coral is the largest city between Tampa and Miami, as well as being the most major city in the Fort Myers Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area. This entire area was measured as having a population just shy of 646,000 people in 2009. The city has over 400 miles of navigable waterways, and in addition has more miles of canal than any other city on Earth, which has led it to being referred to as a "Waterfront Wonderland."

Cape Coral is a 120 square mile city, where just over 110 of those square miles are made up of land. However, just slightly over 9% of the city is made up of water, which is fairly significant in this context. Cape Coral is located on a gigantic peninsula beyond just being a part of Florida. To the south and east, the Caloosahatchee River borders Cape Coral, while the Matlacha Pass borders the city to the west. The Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve and the Matlacha Pass National Wildlife Refuge are both local features near Cape Coral.

With over 400 miles of Canals, Cape Coral beats out other cities in the world, especially considering that a very large percentage of these canals are navigable and a few have access to the Gulf of Mexico. The local tides and ecology have been substantially impacted by the sheer volume of the canals themselves. The climate is also something of a paradise, with 355 days in an average year being sunny. However, this is tempered somewhat by the wetness of the region, which tends to experience precipitation on 145 days of the year.

Cape Coral was originally plotted out in 1957, and has since grown along a fairly steady curve to be a large place. As of 2010, this city had the eleventh largest population in the entire state of Florida. As a matter of fact, the population under the age of 65 well outnumbers the population over 65, and the population within the 18 to 24 year old age group is growing more swiftly than in any other place in the country. With so many young people in the area, it stands to reason that economic prosperity is a major part of this city's culture.

About Lee County, Florida

Cape Coral Florida is not the county seat of Lee County, but it is the most populous city within the county. As of 2003, the entire county's population was just shy of 587,000 people. Being directly tied in with the Cape Coral and Fort Myers Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area certainly does not hurt the area's population trends, and the city of Cape Coral certainly impacted how the area is measured. After all, the area only contained Fort Myers in 1973, but in 1981 Cape Coral was added to the mix. While the title of the area did vacillate for more than 20 years, in 2003 it reached its current name and form.

In 1887, Lee County split off of Monroe County. Named for the Confederate General Robert E. Lee from the American Civil War, this is a county that understands its heritage. Fort Myers was incorporated in 1886, and has become one of the most popular tourist spots in the entirety of southwestern Florida and Lee County's seat. Being 120 miles south of Tampa, this city rests at the converging point of the Gulf of Mexico and the Caloosahatchee River. In addition to this important point, Fort Myers was also the frequent winter home of both Thomas Edison and Henry Ford, and the surrounding county has even hosted the Minnesota Twins and Boston Red Sox during their spring trainings.

In 1863, the fort in Fort Myers stopped merely being a place to fend off Seminole Native Americans. It had originally been abandoned in 1858, after chief Billy Bowlegs and his warriors agreed to relocate west. During the Civil War, Federal troops occupied the fort, and successfully held it against a small group of Confederate soldiers during 1865. Afterward, the fort was again deserted.

In 1923, both Collier and Hendry Counties were formed by splitting them off of Lee County. As time has gone on, the subject of Cape Coral becoming a county unto itself has repeatedly been broached, even being discussed as recently as 2004. However, as of this writing no final decision has been made and no new county has been spun off.