Babcock Ranch: How America’s first solar-powered town weathered Hurricane Ian

25 October 2022 | Lisa Hall

‘It just doesn’t make sense to rebuild the same way every time, knowing that the next time a storm comes by, we end up in the same place,’ developer says

BABCOCK RANCH, Fla. — As Hurricane Ian made landfall on Florida’s west coast, Anthony Grande helplessly watched on from his backyard, about 20 miles northeast of hard-hit downtown Fort Myers.

“It sounded like a freight train. It was literally like a freight train, and it didn’t stop,” Grande recalled. “It didn’t look real. It looked like something out of a science-fiction movie.”

Despite the hurricane-force winds and flooding rains, the lights stayed on at Babcock Ranch.

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