Fort Myers' "ugliest" downtown building may get sprucing

·2 min read
City of Fort Myers parking garage on Monroe Street. Some city council members think the colors don't fit with the city's downtown image, so the city is trying to get a good price to paint it a color to be named late.
City of Fort Myers parking garage on Monroe Street. Some city council members think the colors don't fit with the city's downtown image, so the city is trying to get a good price to paint it a color to be named late.

Some may say it verges on being pink. Others may consider it more of an orangehue.

City Council member Fred Burson calls it "the ugliest thing we have in downtown Fort Myers."

It's the six-deck, 545-space City of Palms Parking Garage, covering an acre along First, Monroe and Bay streets downtown, overlooking Centennial Park and the Caloosahatchee River.

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It's arguably unseemly character could change soon as Burson has called for making its appearance a better fit with Fort Myers' prized downtown.

"It’s got the original paint from when it was built back in the 90s," Burson told a city council meeting this month. "Get rid of that ugly building, I'd like to see us paint it some other color than it is."

That will take money.

City Manager Marty Lawing promised the council he will get a cost estimate and propose a funding source so that the council can make the decision on whether, when and what color to paint the garage..

Approving repainting the garage, or parking facility as it is known in cityspeak, is a job for the city council. It could mean new problems if the color turns out to look better on paint sample cards than on a huge building.

City of Palms Parking Garage in downtown Fort Myers. Completed in 1996, the building has come under criticism from members of the city council who say it's the ugliest building downtown. Those councilmembers say it's time for a new paint job.
City of Palms Parking Garage in downtown Fort Myers. Completed in 1996, the building has come under criticism from members of the city council who say it's the ugliest building downtown. Those councilmembers say it's time for a new paint job.

While Burson suggests something along the lines of newly built grayish buildings nearby, council member Liston Bouchette sees plenty of examples downtown that could be used for inspiration.

"Downtown is our economic engine. They say there are beautiful cities everywhere but there aren't many charming ones," Bouchette said. "We have a charming downtown and it's only going to get better."

When Lawing brings the issue back to the council, it could open the door to whatever artistic sensitivities carry the day.

"I’d like to see it painted in a way that complements Caloosa, the Luminary and all the other facilities we have built," Burson said. "Whites and grays and things of that nature."

This article originally appeared on Fort Myers News-Press: 'Ugly' rap for downtown Fort Myers garage may be painted over

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