City Gate Commerce Center
Environmental Permitting Information
A distinct advantage that City Gate offers its end users is that the environmental permitting has been completed. City Gate’s environment permitting process involved local and state review, as well as federal review by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (USFWS) local and regional offices. City Gate’s mitigation measures to offset any potential impacts the development may have on endangered species have been praised by those Governmental Agencies and Conservation Organizations.
City Gate Commerce Center has obtained a Federal Fish & Wildlife Permit TE145823-0 (City Gate Federal Permit) from the USFWS pursuant to Section 10 (a)(1)(B) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). The City Gate Federal Permit was issued in conjunction with a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP), which was also approved by the USFWS. City Gate’s HCP is the first HCP to involve Florida panther habitat (Pumas concolor coryi) and one of the first in Southwest Florida to address red-cockaded woodpeckers (Picoides borealis) (RCW).
The City Gate HCP, document #2005050-10.1 dated March 15, 2006 as revised through May 2008, was approved on March 30, 2009 by the USFWS. The City Gate Federal Permit TE145823-0, was issued July 1, 2009.
The City Gate HCP involved an impressive list of biologists, including Tom Logan, Florida panthers; Roy DeLotelle, red-cockaded woodpeckers; and Ray Ashton, gopher tortoises. Roger B. Rice, City Gate’s attorney, and Jeremy Sterk, a biologist with Earth Tech Environmental, assisted Logan and DeLotelle in authoring the City Gate HCP. Initially, the plan was to include RCWs only, but when it was asserted that the development could also pose potential impacts to Florida panthers, City Gate agreed to incorporate conservation and mitigation measures for the Florida panther.
The City Gate HCP offered creative strategies to address potential impacts to the endangered Florida panther and RCW. This pioneering HCP will lead to the construction of Florida’s first privately funded wildlife crossing. City Gate representatives worked closely with Conservation Organizations such as the Florida Wildlife Federation and the Collier County Audubon Society, and Governmental Agencies such as the USFWS, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, South Florida Water Management District, and Collier County to help make this precedent-setting HCP happen.
In an article in the August 3, 2009 issue of the Florida Fish and Wildlife News, the official publication of the Florida Wildlife Federation, Nancy Anne Payton, Southwest Florida Field Representative, commends the City Gate HCP. Both the chairperson and the vice chairperson of the Collier County Environmental Advisory Committee praised City Gate’s HCP.
At the urging of local environmental organizations, City Gate began its mitigation efforts in 2004. So whereas most environmental permittees have not met any mitigation conditions at the time of permit issuance, in City Gate’s case, the vast majority of the permit mitigation conditions were met before the permit was even issued. City Gate has also provided financial assurance of the satisfaction of the remaining mitigation conditions.