Fort Myers Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) signs management agreement for River District Farmer’s Market

FORT MYERS, Fla.– The Fort Myers Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) announces that it has signed a management agreement for the River District Farmer’s Market with Local Roots, LLC.

The market will take place from 9 AM – 1 PM Every Thursday under the Caloosahatchee Bridge at 200 West First Street.   

The River District Farmer’s Market was put on hold last fall after Hurricane Ian. Originally named the Downtown Farmers Market and established in 1994, it is the oldest farmer’s market in Lee County. The CRA organized the River District Farmer’s Market to provide convenient and inexpensive market facilities for area vendors to sell their products directly to customers at reasonable prices.

Now in their 16th year of business, Local Roots, LLC was established in 2007 by business partners Betsy Ventura and Jean Baer, both residents of Sanibel for nearly 40 years.

The market has generated local economic activity by attracting shoppers to the area, supporting nearby businesses, and encouraging further investment in the community.

“We are pleased to be bringing the farmer’s market back to downtown,” said Kevin Anderson, chairman of the Fort Myers CRA. “The foot traffic generated by the market benefits surrounding businesses, as shoppers often explore nearby shops and restaurants after visiting the market. This increased economic activity can encourage further investment in the area, contributing to the overall vitality and growth of the community.”

According to Local Roots, the goal of each of their markets is to strengthen the surrounding community by showcasing vendors that are selling produce and artisan products that are grown or produced locally. Products are packaged by owners in an environmentally friendly way and the locations of markets are clean and safe and reflect a community atmosphere. Products at each market include fresh produce, organics, honey, cheese, meats, flowers, seafood, sweets, crafts, prepared foods and more.

“This is just an example of how the CRA collaborates with local businesses, residents and organizations to develop and implement innovative solutions that address the unique challenges faced by our community, creating a better future for all,” added Hylton Terry.

For more information on Local Roots, visit

About the Fort Myers Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA)

The Fort Myers Community Redevelopment Agency was created in 1984 by the City of Fort Myers, Florida, under Florida Statute Chapter 163, to formulate a plan and strategy for the revitalization of the downtown River District. 

The Fort Myers CRA has continued to grow, and redevelopment areas have been added throughout the city. Today, the Fort Myers Community Redevelopment Agency encourages and oversees redevelopment in four designated areas that contain a total of 14 distinct geographic sections within the Fort Myers city limits.  

The Fort Myers CRA, along with the City’s Community Development Division, prepares plans for the revitalization of each area and coordinates the implementation of the plan’s recommendations. Tax Increment Funds (TIF) generated by each area, combined with other funding sources, are used to upgrade the public infrastructure and to stimulate redevelopment in the same area where it was generated.  

The Fort Myers City Council members, sitting as the Community Redevelopment Agency Board of Commissioners, oversee the Agency’s divisions and their operations. The Fort Myers CRA office is located at 1400 Jackson Street in the Downtown River District.