2020 U.S. Census data shows significant shift in Fort Myers population growth
The 2020 Census Report reveals that the population of Fort Myers has increased by more than 38% since 2010. This sets in motion the need for a citywide redistricting that re-evaluates the equitable distribution of population in the six districts of the city.
The data shows that the composition of Fort Myers has also changed dramatically, with a significant increase in diversity.
A population increase of this size is very likely to result in city commission districts with unequal populations. This necessitates the reshuffling of districts to allocate resources and maintain compliance with the United States Constitution and Voting Rights Act.
Liz Bello-Matthews, Office of Public Information for the City of Fort Myers, says the Hispanic and Latino population has increased by 64%, making them the second largest group in the city. And the number of residents who identify with two or more races has quintupled over the past 10 years.
So how will this data impact the next decade in Fort Myers? Bello-Matthews says they are already seeing a change in the culture of the city.
“We’re already hearing more languages being spoken in the community,” Bello-Matthews said. “There are interesting and exciting places to eat opening up all over the city, and it also reinforces that the city of Fort Myers is an ideal home for residents who grew up here and for those looking for a new place to live. life that can also offer them opportunities: good schools, a reliable housing market, history, charm and security.
Bello-Matthews adds that the exponential growth of the southeast neighborhood of the city in particular may have generated the need to redraw neighborhood boundaries.
“Ward 6 is a very attractive area and a lot of people have moved there,” Bello-Matthews said. “We have seen a population growth of 128%. Perhaps many would say this is what started the redistricting process.
Fort Myers residents are encouraged to be part of the redistricting process. Beginning Dec. 2, the city will begin holding public redistricting meetings. The first meeting will gather public input and review the five proposed maps selected by City Council. Residents can create and submit additional maps and get a full list of meeting dates by visiting the city’s redistricting website at CityofFortMyers.com.
How to participate
Email – submit your questions or map suggestions to email: [email protected]
Public Meetings – Attend one of the many public meetings listed below:
Additionally, you can contact the offices of your local elected council: Contact your local councilor’s office
The public redistribution process
Redistricting is a public process. The final ward boundaries are chosen by a majority vote of the city council in a public hearing that has been announced and made public in accordance with state law.
- A series of public meetings began with a City Council business session Nov. 17 at the Southwest Florida Enterprise Center at 2:00 p.m. to consider map scenarios to be presented as candidate maps.
- The mapping options will then be presented to the public at meetings at various public institutions for comments and suggestions.
- A second City Council business meeting will be held on January 3, 2022 to discuss public input and review the final selection of updated ward boundaries.
- January 17 City Council meeting – Authorization to announce a public hearing to select a final map option.
- Public hearing of the February 7 city council meeting to adopt the new neighborhood plan.
Once adopted, the final new ward map will be sent to the Local Elections Office Supervisor to begin updates to electoral districts for the 2022 elections.
Download the current set of maps under review by the City Council
This final set of candidate maps was selected by the city council. The proposed maps will also be presented at various public meetings to seek public feedback and answer questions about the process.
A web map has been created. You can zoom into any area and see street names and property lines. Click on the layer button and you will see a list of all candidate maps.
City of Fort Myers 2020 Census Results by Neighborhood
The city of Fort Myers increased its total population by almost 39% between 2010 and the 2020 census. This population growth has not been uniform. Each neighborhood grew at a different pace, and demographic shifts over the decade made redistricting more difficult.
- Ward 1: 12.8%
- Ward 2: 31.88%
- Ward 3: 24.02%
- Ward 4: 20.29%
- Ward 5: 10.51%
- Ward 6: 128.49%
- City-wide growth: 38.70%
The city has also changed demographically over the past decade. Some demographic groups have seen significant increases, while others have declined.
Download the City of Fort Myers Population and Demographics Report