In 2015 more new commercial properties were placed in service in Estero than in any year since 2007. While Hertz and Walmart received the most attention, other commercial businesses opened their doors for the first time last year as well.  The new properties added over $ 150 million to Estero’s growing tax base.

            Coconut Trace, located on U.S. 41 opposite Coconut Point Mall, adjacent to Marsh Landing, began expanding last spring.  First Watch and Pollo Tropical face U.S. 41, while Aspen Dental and T-Mobile are located in the rear of Coconut Trace on Lyden Drive.

First Watch closed its Bonita Springs location to move to this new 3,500 square-foot facility in Estero with over twenty-five employees.  This is the seventh SW FL location for this sit-down style restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and brunch.

Pollo Tropical is a fast-growing chain of fast food restaurants offering Latin and Caribbean menu items.  It’s estimated to add about sixty new jobs to Estero.

T-Mobile is part of national T-Mobile USA, Inc. which offers wireless voice, messaging, data, and mobile internet services.

Aspen Dental practices are independently owned and operated by licensed dentists, with five locations in southwest Florida.  They offer general dentistry services, as well as denture and other specialty dental services.

Discovery Day Academy, a private school for pre-school through the fifth grade, held its grand opening in August.  Located on N. Commons Drive, south of the Elks Club, this 22,000 square-foot facility now has an enrollment of over eighty students.  Plans exist to add a new media center, improve the physical education facilities and expand classes up through the eighth grade.

     Walmart, after twelve years of anticipation, opened its 180,000 square feet supercenter in August.  The $13.5 million facility features Mediterranean-style architecture, and landscaping in keeping with the Estero tradition. The 24 hour store on U.S. 41 provides over 300 jobs to the community.

            Race Trac, the 24 hour gas station and convenience store opened in September.  This Race Trac facility, unlike their others, includes a subdued canopy more in line with Estero’s standards.  It is located on U.S. 41 opposite the Club at Rapallo.

            Hertz Global Holdings’ global headquarters’ three-story office building on U.S. 41 opened its doors to employees in late October.  The 248,000 square-foot, $100+ million building is a state-of-the-art facility with open space work stations, along with 27 conference rooms, a cafeteria, a 5,000 square-foot fitness center and a day-care facility.  The 34 acre property includes a rental center and 900-space parking garage.  Employment is expected to reach over 800, with several hundred having already been hired in SW Florida.

            Coconut Point Honda, located opposite the Club at Rapallo on U.S. 41, opened the first week of 2016.  They offer hundreds of new and used cars, financing and service in a modern new car show room.