A Brief History Of Imperial Harbor
In the spring of 1959, a group of investors led by Ad Miller of Naples started Imperial Harbor. The area was all sand and trees, but by October of the same year, Mr. and Mrs. Ray Landers were the first residents to install a mobile home amid lots marked by stakes. One year later, in 1960, Hurricane Donna destroyed all but two homes in the new community.
J. William Bryant, the last of three original investors, directed the development of Units 2, 3 and 4, built the recreation building (now the Harbor Club), swimming pool, shuffleboard courts, boat dock, storage compound, picnic area, and sewage plant. Bryant sold the Imperial Harbor Corporation to three officials of the Pittsburgh Pirates Baseball Club and by 1971 the investment base had broadened to over 200 shareholders. In 1972, the community expanded to over 300 homes.
In 1985, Imperial Harbor residents voted to purchase the entire community from the Corporation and it is now owned by the residents and operated entirely by resident volunteers.
Imperial Harbor currently has 645 homes and, meeting all requirements of the Housing for Older Persons Act of 1995, is maintained as an ‘Over 55’ community. This designation means 80% of the community must have at least one resident who is over 55 years of age living in each home and by law, that percentage must be maintained. No one under 18 years of age is allowed as a permanent resident, including renters. Visitors are always welcome and children may visit for up to 30 days.