SC Staff Report
photo/video by SC Associate Publisher Chuck Larsen
Spring has arrived and so has the traffic on Periwinkle Way. After a year of reduced traffic, the Sanibel Police Department issued heavy traffic advisories over the past few weeks after more than 5,500 vehicles were counted before noon at the Sanibel Causeway toll booth.
Reports released to the City of Sanibel by Lee County, which owns and operates the Sanibel Causeway and its toll booth, have shown traffic started declining as the island began feeling the effects of the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020.
Traffic in the first two months of this year was down by a total of 63,068 vehicles or 9.86 percent compared to the same months last year, just before the effects of the pandemic.
The number of vehicles counted in January was 282,778, which was 11.16 percent less than in January 2020, or a difference of 35,537 vehicles. In February, 293,554 vehicles were counted, a decrease of 8.57 percent or 27,531 less vehicles versus February 2020. The highest recorded traffic for February was 21 years ago when 334,888 vehicles were counted.
The next report, released in May, will show the vehicle count for March which marks one year since the decline in traffic due to the pandemic and typically one of the busiest month of the year.