A palm-lined street full of neighborhood retail greets visitors to Fort Myers as they enter the city from I-75, heading westward along Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard (MLK). Monuments to the historical heroes of the area decorate the park-like areas along either side of the roadway, celebrating the heritage of a community that still exists along MLK. Industrial giants are set back from the road, hidden by the lush Florida vegetation that creates a sense of gentle tranquility and soften the sounds of a peak city business district. Along MLK’s intersections, safe pedestrian crosswalks unite the north and south business flanks, and invite a flow of local walkers and business workers to traverse between their favorite restaurants, markets, services, and offices.
On either side of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard are two residential neighborhoods where a tight-knit community has become a haven for cultivating a mixed-income, walkable and economically-viable family zone. Developing strategies to create above-average wage jobs that improve residents’ quality of life is an objective that not only benefits the immediate area, but the City of Fort Myers as a whole.
This is part of the vision for the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard redevelopment area. Its commercial corridor will support its residents through an enhanced level of service, while those residents will support the local businesses.
The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard redevelopment area, comprised of four sub-areas, is positioned east of the Downtown redevelopment area and south of the East Fort Myers redevelopment area. It is located south of Billy’s Creek and north of Canal Street.