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Old 01-16-2018, 02:22 PM   #1
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Punta Gorda Seawalls

Iíve noticed that several Trawler Forum folks live in Punta Gorda.
My friends Darrell and Cindy own a home there so I visit several times a year.

Darrellís seawall was damaged in this last hurricane. The silly thing is that it didnít fall over, it just sank straight down about a foot. His dock was fastened to the seawall and now at least one of the pilings under it is broken. The shore side of the dock is now about a foot lower than the outer edge.

I understand there were a lot of seawalls damaged. I heard 18 miles.

Any of the other TF folks lose a seawall? How did it fail?
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Old 01-16-2018, 04:14 PM   #2
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Interesting you should mention this because I am heading to PG on Sunday to look at some condos. It is my understanding that the city maintains the sea walls in Punta Gorda Isles the big canal front development just south of Fishermen's Village. Kind of like a developer deeding the roads in his development to the city so they will maintain them.

If the sea wall dropped more or less straight down, then it probably was undermined by wave action which washed out the soil underneath so it dropped. Or it wasn't built right in the first place with deep enough footings.

I understand that the water level dropped precipitously after the eye passed in the last hurricane. That might have been what let the waves work on the base of the sea wall.

David
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Old 01-16-2018, 04:50 PM   #3
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I would be interested in hearing who is the owner and responsible for them as well. If it is the city and 18 miles are damaged, I'd bet some are going to wait a very long time. I wonder how the canals are as well. I know generally that's a city responsibility but it takes years to get through all of them. I also wonder if all the seawalls were affected the same way or some one way and some other ways.

Anxious to hear from those who are there.

I have one acquaintance with a damaged dock in Pompano and getting it replaced won't be nearly as hard as getting the permit approved. Apparently they haven't done it correctly and each delay is for another month until the committee or board meets. Pompano is the leader in red tape and delays it seems.
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Old 01-16-2018, 04:59 PM   #4
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Not punta Gorda, but in my dad's neighborhood in fort Myers the homeowner is responsible. And repair is very expensive, quotes are $1,000 a linear foot. Insurance doesn't cover it.
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Old 01-16-2018, 05:04 PM   #5
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Not punta Gorda, but in my dad's neighborhood in fort Myers the homeowner is responsible. And repair is very expensive, quotes are $1,000 a linear foot. Insurance doesn't cover it.
I know insurance doesn't cover and they're not cheap, but the $1,000 per linear foot sounds like an opportunist trying to jump in. I just don't believe a 100' lot would cost $100,000 to repair or build a seawall.
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Old 01-16-2018, 05:07 PM   #6
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People charge what the market will bear, how pricing allocates scarce resources.

Wait a couple years and prices should be back to normal
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Old 01-16-2018, 05:22 PM   #7
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The problem was caused by Irma. As I understand it the heavy rain got down behind the seawalls causing them to push out at the inside bottom and then the yard falling in behind.

The city tries to stay on top of any holes developing in the yards behind the sea walls and will send a crew out to fill the hole. Irma was just too much.

The city replaced half of my seawall 5 years ago because it was sloughing out at the bottom. The other half was pretty old and it failed during Irma taking half the back yard with it into the canal.

It is going to all be fixed but it will be a long time.

Luckily we sold the house last year and moved to a condo in PGI so no worry for us.
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Old 01-16-2018, 05:30 PM   #8
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In Fort Lauderdale, the responsibility is 100% the homeowner. You may be cited if the seawall needs repair and you have 60 days to begin to address the problem, 365 days to rectify it. Heights have become an issue recently with new walls required to be 3.9' NAVD88 and a lot of talk about 5.6'. Some have to be higher already. Ours is based on location and previous flood plain, even though current flood plain wouldn't require as high.

The rising waters have caused concern over height with new rules targeting 2035.

The higher walls do get very expensive. The reason is that in adding height, the entire construction has to be beefed up for support. So, it's not a proportionate increase but much more.

There was another issue from what I heard by some on the west coast with damaged seawalls. It was whether FEMA would assist or not. To consider it, FEMA required a statement from your insurer that they would not pay. However, I never heard whether homeowners got assistance or not.
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Old 01-16-2018, 05:47 PM   #9
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A friend of mine lost 100' of seawall in Cape Coral. Before the hurricane sea wall repairs were in the $150-200/foot. After it is $800/foot. Only city approved contractors allowed to do the work and only 3 contractors are approved. Sounds like the fix is in in that town. If it were me I would do my own environmentally friendly rip rap or gabion basket wall for much less money.
I would bet there would be permit issues with the city.
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:35 PM   #10
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I forgot one very important point in my post above...# 7 and was reminded by B&B's where he mentions high water.

It was the extreme low water that exacerbated the problem in Irma. The high winds pushed all the water off shore and the canals went virtually dry which removed the pressure of the water that holds the seawall in place at the bottom. When the older seawalls were installed they not were required to be driven as deep as the newer ones are.

Many of the canals were at the lowest water level remembered and you could walk out on the harbor in front of my condo for several hundred feet and not step in water.
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:46 PM   #11
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I forgot one very important point in my post above...# 7 and was reminded by B&B's where he mentions high water.

It was the extreme low water that exacerbated the problem in Irma. The high winds pushed all the water off shore and the canals went virtually dry which removed the pressure of the water that holds the seawall in place at the bottom. When the older seawalls were installed they not were required to be driven as deep as the newer ones are.

Many of the canals were at the lowest water level remembered and you could walk out on the harbor in front of my condo for several hundred feet and not step in water.
Did the newer ones that were driven deeper survive?
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:05 PM   #12
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Did the newer ones that were driven deeper survive?
As I understand it they had a significantly higher survival rate.
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:17 PM   #13
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I know insurance doesn't cover and they're not cheap, but the $1,000 per linear foot sounds like an opportunist trying to jump in. I just don't believe a 100' lot would cost $100,000 to repair or build a seawall.
Quite possible that you are correct, I got that info from my dad, who is elderly, and sometimes makes mistakes. It sounded really high to me as well, but I'm no expert on seawall construction.

On the other hand, this came from his next door neighbor who lost his seawall in Irma, they are very close and talk every day, so I doubt it is very far off. My dad has almost 200' of seawall at his home, the house I grew up in. The seawall there is 50 years old, and my dad is concerned that when he passes the house on to my brothers and me that he will be giving us a huge expense.

The $800 a foot for Cape Coral could apply to Ft. Myers as well, since they are in the same county and there just aren't that many places that do seawall work, it's kind of a specialized business.

Any way you look at it, it's a huge expense.
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:42 PM   #14
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Glad I donít live there. Neighbor replaced his seawall 2 years ago at $125 per foot.
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:48 PM   #15
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I live on the south end of Pine Island and ended up with a horizontal crack
along the bottom of my seawall due to the water pressure on the back side
of the wall and now it is buckling out along the crack.

The water left the canal faster then the water could seep out from behind the wall.
We have 50' of seawall and we were quoted $29,000 and change to replace
it. Hopefully I can hold off the repair until the prices drop.
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Old 01-16-2018, 08:36 PM   #16
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Quite possible that you are correct, I got that info from my dad, who is elderly, and sometimes makes mistakes. It sounded really high to me as well, but I'm no expert on seawall construction.

On the other hand, this came from his next door neighbor who lost his seawall in Irma, they are very close and talk every day, so I doubt it is very far off. My dad has almost 200' of seawall at his home, the house I grew up in. The seawall there is 50 years old, and my dad is concerned that when he passes the house on to my brothers and me that he will be giving us a huge expense.

The $800 a foot for Cape Coral could apply to Ft. Myers as well, since they are in the same county and there just aren't that many places that do seawall work, it's kind of a specialized business.

Any way you look at it, it's a huge expense.
I don't doubt some are quoting those rates. I do think they're extremely high unless there's something complicating the work. I would expect $500 or so to be the upper end of pricing in normal circumstances. With the amount of seawall we have, I don't even want to think of $1000 rates.

I was amazed during the hurricane watching all the water swept out and anticipated some damage from it but not of the nature apparently that has occurred.
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Old 01-16-2018, 09:15 PM   #17
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The people living in Punta Gorda Isles pay a tax yearly for seawall maintenance so they wont be paying for the repairs. Actually I heard that the city had not kept enough money to do all the repairs and FEMA is giving the city money. I guess we are all paying for the repairs.


Those people in PGI who lost docks along with their seawall will have to pay to replace their docks.
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Old 01-16-2018, 09:47 PM   #18
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The people living in Punta Gorda Isles pay a tax yearly for seawall maintenance so they wont be paying for the repairs. Actually I heard that the city had not kept enough money to do all the repairs and FEMA is giving the city money. I guess we are all paying for the repairs.


Those people in PGI who lost docks along with their seawall will have to pay to replace their docks.
Not surprising that the city doesn't have enough set aside to pay. I'm not sure they should have anticipated anything like this storm and the seawall damage it had. Now, how much from FEMA and when they'll see that money are always questions to be answered.
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Old 01-18-2018, 08:08 AM   #19
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Interesting reading about the seawalls. Not trying to be a vulture, but my cousin here in Texas owns a seawall building company. He has done it for years and has a great reputation. Iím wondering if itís worth it to him to have a separate crew in PG or wherever, or does Florida have enough contractors? With those prices it sounds like not enough contractors, or maybe just some gouging going on. Here he charges around $250 per linear foot for wood seawalls (depending on the job complexity obviously) so maybe he could make some money and still be the low bidder.
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Old 01-18-2018, 10:50 AM   #20
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No doubt at all, if anything he'd be a bit late to the party but I'm sure demand and pricing will stay high for at least a year in hard-hit places.
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