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Future of Fort Myers/Sanibel Resorts

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Hi,

Hoping we can consolidate some information regarding the future of timeshare resorts in Fort Myers/Sanibel with updates from owners. I will add what I know and hope others can add comments

La Haina Resort 0459 - Totally destroyed by Ian estimates to rebuild were $35,000,000 ownership overwhelmingly decided to close the resort and attempt to sell the parcels of land

Tropical Sands - Currently expect to tr-open but, it is not clear if their damage will put them above 50% of the value of the property which would require them to build to current code.
 

TheTimeTraveler

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Sadly I suspect that some of the timeshares in the areas affected will not be able to function again due to the extensive damage.

The good news is that the land value is worth far more now than when the timeshares were established. As a result, I suspect that many owners may end up whole (or better than whole) in spite of the total destruction.





.
 

andre10056

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The immediate damage assessment right after the hurricane at the following three Fort Myers Beach resorts:

Windward Passage. The main direct oceanfront building which had been built on very strong cement piers was relatively undamaged. The oceanside of the building built at ground level and perpendicular to the beach was destroyed and the rest of the building going back from the beach toward the street was severely damaged. Don't know about the roof and the mechanics.

Bel Air Beach Club. Built on "not so thick" cement piers, they were apparently strong enough to prevent structural damage to the building. But the mechanical rooms were all at ground level and the electrical wiring, plumbing, elevator mechanics/electric etc. were destroyed. A temporary roof was the first thing that was repaired.

Caribbean Beach Club. The north and center buildings, built on very strong cement piers, were relatively undamaged with the exception of the asphalt shingles on the roof. As was the case everywhere, any building built at ground level and not on "stilts" was badly, badly damaged and that applies to this resort's south building.. However, the south building's metal roof was intact and just about 100% okay (such that the resort may consider metal roofs exclusively going forward). There are no longer railings where railings should be such that it's a safety hazard around the pool, along the stairways. Ripped off lanai screens have been replaced to the extent that they could (with supply chain issues making it difficult to get all the repair materials they needed). Elevator dead and needing to be replaced.

The good news for Caribbean Beach Club owners is that their management company is Tricomm Mangement, the same business that owns and operates Platinum Interchange. And PI is accepting exchanges of any week, any unit. Indeed, if they happen to be having their periodic promotion, you can get 3 weeks for your (very likely unusable) Caribbean Beach Club week.

All resorts in Fort Myers Beach are contending with the Fort Myers Beach requirement that any and all significant repairs/renovations can only be initiated via permit. And permits are granted no earlier than 90 days after application. And even if the application is approved, can they get the building materials?

Still, all in all they're doing much better than many of the homeowners in Fort Myers Beach, few of whom had paid for relatively expensive flood insurance. Hence, they won't get a dime for repair costs. As a result, they're letting the town demolish their badly damaged homes and walking away from the vacant lots on which they may still owe megabucks.

A very exciting development is that a Mexican food truck recently set up shop in Fort Myers Beach such that people are now waiting in long lines to buy its prepared food.

What a mess! Fort Myers Beach is truly paradise lost.

I noticed a few days ago that a Caribbean Beach Club 1 BR for a June week appeared on RCI. I was tempted but I think that would be a miracle. Let's hope they can open by then. I don't know what would happen if the week ultimately turned out to be unavailable but I chose not to find out.
 
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dioxide45

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Still, all in all they're doing much better than most of the homeowners in Fort Myers Beach, few of whom had paid for relatively expensive flood insurance. Hence, they won't get a dime for repair costs. As a result, they're letting the town demolish their badly damaged homes and walking away from the vacant lots on which they may still owe megabucks.
If they didn't have flood insurance then they likely didn't have a loan. Most lenders require flood insurance if in a flood zone. If they weren't in a flood zone but still flooded, the lender has processes in place to rebuild the residential unit.
 

andre10056

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If they didn't have flood insurance then they likely didn't have a loan. Most lenders require flood insurance if in a flood zone. If they weren't in a flood zone but still flooded, the lender has processes in place to rebuild the residential unit.
Let's hope you're right and that the people who didn't have loans can at least get paid for their vacant lots (which I would think would be the case). And/or that people with loans and without flood insurance can get their properties rebuilt by their lenders. Because there are apparently people walking away expecting nothing. Or so I'm hearing.

Maybe it's just people who let their flood coverage lapse, followed by warnings from their lender, and who just didn't get around to renewing at the time that Fort Myers Beach became part of the Gulf of Mexico. Those people would not now be happy. Nor would their bank.
 
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dioxide45

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Let's hope you're right and that the people who didn't have loans can at least get paid for their vacant lots. And/or that people with loans and without flood insurance can get their properties rebuilt by their lenders. Because there are apparently people walking away expecting nothing. Or so I'm hearing.

Maybe it's just people who let their flood coverage lapse, followed by warnings from their lender, and who just didn't get around to renewing at the time that Fort Myers Beach became part of the Gulf of Mexico. Those people would now not be happy. Nor would their bank.
If they are with loans and without insurance, I am not really sure what happens there.... The lender will work with the insurance company to help rebuild if there was insurance in place.
 

rapmarks

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If you have a mortgage, you must buy the flood insurance if in a flood zone, and must show proof of home ins
many homeowners are not being allowed to rebuild because rules changed and their lots are too small.
the flood zone has been extended into our subdivision after ian even though it did not flood.
 
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andre10056

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If you have a mortgage, you must buy the flood insurance if in a flood zone, and must show proof of home ins
many homeowners are not being allowed to rebuild because rules changed and their lots are too small.
the flood zone has been extended into our subdivision after Asian even though it did not flood.
rapmarks, thanks for that information.

It's been a while since I last had a mortgage. I do remember having a homeowners' insurance requirement but I'm pretty sure that I didn't get the insurance from the bank so that it was somehow automatically renewed. I think I had to get the insurance through the company of my choice. But what happens if you don't renew on time? I imagine there would be some period of time until the bank might arrange for its own insurance. And for a time there would be no insurance.

Also, just as you all-of-a-sudden got told you were now in a flood zone despite not being at all flooded, couldn't there have been areas where there might have been flooding but had previously not been deemed to be in a flood zone? In which case the bank would not have had any flood insurance requirement.

It just seems that an event of this magnitude may have caught people unaware of and/or unprepared for possible nightmare scenarios

And, as to the people who can't now rebuild, let's assume they had owned a property worth a million dollars. But the flood insurance (assuming they had it) will now just pay them for the structural value of the property (perhaps $500,000) And nobody's now going to pay them $500,000 for the vacant lot, especially if they can't now build upon it. I'm wondering if they're out (or the bank's out) of that difference.

Interesting issues.

Of course, how might this impact a timeshare owner? A town filled with vacant lots may or not be an optimal place to stay, especially if there are few shops and restaurants, and little entertainment and nightlife, etc. And it may therefore affect whether or not timeshare boards may choose to reopen if it's a close case.

It'll be interesting to watch how all this unfolds.
 

dioxide45

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It's been a while since I last had a mortgage. I do remember having a homeowners' insurance requirement but I'm pretty sure that I didn't get the insurance from the bank so that it was somehow automatically renewed. I think I had to get the insurance through the company of my choice. But what happens if you don't renew on time? I imagine there would be some period of time until the bank might arrange for its own insurance. And for a time there would be no insurance.
Generally if you keep the same insurance company, your policy just keeps renewing as the lender is making your insurance premium payments for you. If you cancel the policy and switch you need to send your lender a copy of your policy information. If you don't or you just cancel your policy, the lender will send some letters asking you to get coverage. If you don't, they go out and purchase what they call force placed insurance. It is very expensive and they still take it out of your escrow account.
 
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rapmarks

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rapmarks, thanks for that information.

It's been a while since I last had a mortgage. I do remember having a homeowners' insurance requirement but I'm pretty sure that I didn't get the insurance from the bank so that it was somehow automatically renewed. I think I had to get the insurance through the company of my choice. But what happens if you don't renew on time? I imagine there would be some period of time until the bank might arrange for its own insurance. And for a time there would be no insurance.

Also, just as you all-of-a-sudden got told you were now in a flood zone despite not being at all flooded, couldn't there have been areas where there might have been flooding but had previously not been deemed to be in a flood zone? In which case the bank would not have had any flood insurance requirement.

It just seems that an event of this magnitude may have caught people unaware of and/or unprepared for possible nightmare scenarios

And, as to the people who can't now rebuild, let's assume they had owned a property worth a million dollars. But the flood insurance (assuming they had it) will now just pay them for the structural value of the property (perhaps $500,000) And nobody's now going to pay them $500,000 for the vacant lot, especially if they can't now build upon it. I'm wondering if they're out (or the bank's out) of that difference.

Interesting issues.

Of course, how might this impact a timeshare owner? A town filled with vacant lots may or not be an optimal place to stay, especially if there are few shops and restaurants, and little entertainment and nightlife, etc. And it may therefore affect whether or not timeshare boards may choose to reopen if it's a close case.

It'll be interesting to watch how all this unfolds.
People here basically believe land along fort myers beach will be bought by developres and we will see high rises All along the beach.
no, there were not previous issues of flooding in my subdivision. They change flood zone designations frequently and they decided to draw a big loop around our area. We are east of 41 and most damage was west of 41, damage from Estero bays storm surge, and pushed you the Estero river.
also FEMA has 32000 ytailers waiting to be delivered,band something like 50 have been deliverec.
 

theo

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The good news for Caribbean Beach Club owners is that their management company is Tricomm Mangement, the same business that owns and operates Platinum Interchange. And PI is accepting exchanges of any week, any unit. Indeed, if they happen to be having their periodic promotion, you can get 3 weeks for your (very likely unusable) Caribbean Beach Club week.

I certainly don't want to hijack the intended (and most welcome) OP topic of this thread, but the above quoted observation caught my attention.

We don't belong to PI (and don't "exchange" at all, actually) but it seems (...to me, anyhow) to be a disservice to its' members for an exchange company to accept as deposits uninhabitable weeks which basically do not currently even exist and which the exchange company knows do not currently exist, then allowing members to pick up (apparently several other) "exchanges" after depositing essentially nothing. Puzzling math, as far as "exchange inventory" goes, no? :ponder:
 
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andre10056

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I certainly don't want to hijack the intended (and most welcome) OP topic of this thread, but the above quoted observation caught my attention.

We don't belong to PI (and don't "exchange" at all, actually) but it seems (...to me, anyhow) to be a disservice to its' members for an exchange company to accept as deposits uninhabitable weeks which basically do not currently even exist and which the exchange company knows do not currently exist, then allowing members to pick up (apparently several other) "exchanges" after depositing --- essentially nothing. Puzzling math, as far as "exchange inventory" goes, no? :ponder:
I think the exchange company, in this case, must have ample inventory that never gets claimed. So they know from years of experience that affording their (in this case Caribbean Beach Club) owners an exchange opportunity/exchange opportunities will not cause exhaustion of their available weeks.

I don't know how they do it, but I do know they have ample inventory and that much of it falls off due to no one having claimed previously available weeks. And that they would no doubt prefer that people DO reserve their available inventory so they can earn exchange fees.

Of course, if you've exchanged a Memorial Day week, and the resort will indeed be open during that week, at that point they can make it available. But not until they hear from the resort that they're back in business.

Of far greater concern to me is an owner trading the resort into another exchange company like RCI which apparently knows nothing about the current status of the resort, lists it as available, and causes people to start making travel reservations, etc. for a week that will never actually become available. So I think PI trying to help its owners, while not disadvantaging anyone else in any way, is the 100% honorable thing to do.

Maintenance fees are now due for all Hurricane Ian-affected resorts. Expect many people to exchange into RCI after they pay. Be aware that even a June opening date may be very questionable. Might happen, likely won't.
 
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theo

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Tropical Sands - Currently expect to tr-open but, it is not clear if their damage will put them above 50% of the value of the property which would require them to build to current code.
I have some familiarity with this particular property, well built (albeit way back in the early 1980's). There are 39 (all identical, all 2BR) units distributed over 3 floors, the ground level units having been completely decimated by Ian's storm surge (the separate small office building was also destroyed entirely). The two upper floors apparently sustained much less damage from wind and rain intrusion.

Frankly, I have concerns about the (small, local) Tropical Sands management company's ability to handle this crisis effectively, particularly since they also manage 5 other (all of them Gulf-front) timeshare properties on FMB, plus another (also Gulf-front) timeshare property on Sanibel Island, all of them having obviously sustained serious Ian damage.
Could this be more simultaneous crisis at more properties than a small, local, timeshare management company is actually equipped or able to effectively address / handle? :ponder:

That said, I find myself wondering if, when the TSR reconstruction cost / insurance reimbursement / current code standards math is undertaken, the 13 destroyed ground level units could / would just essentially become "stilt support" in a rebuild, in order to remain a timeshare property and still comply with current codes. Then again, that may not even be a realistic (or legal) option, since pursuing that option would surely mean first buying out the ownership rights of +/- 50 weeks x 13 units or about 650 unit / weeks. Maybe that's not even a practical (or lawful) option, I dunno. Just thinking out loud... :shrug:

The devastation of Fort Myers Beach is almost beyond comprehension. Timeshare properties aside, one has to wonder if it can or will come back as anything even remotely resembling its' former self or if instead (as rapmarks has previously mentioned), it just becomes land for the footings for (altogether too many) new high rise condos. :(
 
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More than likely Tricomm will be providing replacement inventory when they open from the resorts that are not able to deposit. This seems risky for a small exchange company with extremely limited inventory to do as it could quickly overwhelm their system. I am sure that they have determined they have enough spoilage that they can absorb this and they will probably diminish the buying power of those weeks to not remove prime inventory.
 
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I have some familiarity with this particular property, well built (albeit way back in the early 1980's). There are 39 (all identical, all 2BR) units distributed over 3 floors, the ground level units having been basically completely decimated by Ian's storm surge (the separate small office building was also destroyed entirely). The two upper floors apparently sustained much less damage.

I find myself wondering if, when the reconstruction cost / insurance reimbursement / current code standards math is undertaken, the 13 destroyed ground level units could / would just essentially become "stilt support" in a rebuild, if necessary, in order to remain a timeshare property and still comply with current code. Then again, that may not even be an available legal option, since pursuing that option would essentially mean buying out ownership rights of +/- 50 weeks x 13 units or about 650 unit / weeks. Maybe not a practical (or lawful) option -- I dunno. Just thinking out loud... :shrug:

On the other hand, the devastation of Fort Myers Beach is almost beyond comprehension. Timeshare properties aside, one has to wonder if it can or will come back as anything even resembling its' former self or if instead, it just becomes a historical footnote amidst a whole new infux of high rise condos.
I think the code will require building to be 20 feet off of the ground
 
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I believe that the code will require building 20 feet off the ground. I am concerned that the damage to Tropical sands will break the 50/50 rule and require a very costly rebuild which most of the owners would reject.
 

theo

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I believe that the code will require building 20 feet off the ground. I am concerned that the damage to Tropical sands will break the 50/50 rule and require a very costly rebuild which most of the owners would reject.
You may very well be absolutely right; I guess only time will tell...

I have a certain fondness for that particular property. My late parents bought a few fixed weeks there (pre-construction, early 1980's) and numerous family members of three generations have many memories of some great family times there over several decades.

There is another timeshare property diagonally across from TSR on Estero Blvd. called Mariners Boat House (managed by VRI, when last I knew and near Caribbean Beach Club). Being right on the shore (unlike Tropical Sands) I wonder how that timeshare property fared in the wrath of Ian...
 
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rapmarks

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rapmarks, thanks for that information.

It's been a while since I last had a mortgage. I do remember having a homeowners' insurance requirement but I'm pretty sure that I didn't get the insurance from the bank so that it was somehow automatically renewed. I think I had to get the insurance through the company of my choice. But what happens if you don't renew on time? I imagine there would be some period of time until the bank might arrange for its own insurance. And for a time there would be no insurance.

Also, just as you all-of-a-sudden got told you were now in a flood zone despite not being at all flooded, couldn't there have been areas where there might have been flooding but had previously not been deemed to be in a flood zone? In which case the bank would not have had any flood insurance requirement.

It just seems that an event of this magnitude may have caught people unaware of and/or unprepared for possible nightmare scenarios

And, as to the people who can't now rebuild, let's assume they had owned a property worth a million dollars. But the flood insurance (assuming they had it) will now just pay them for the structural value of the property (perhaps $500,000) And nobody's now going to pay them $500,000 for the vacant lot, especially if they can't now build upon it. I'm wondering if they're out (or the bank's out) of that difference.

Interesting issues.

Of course, how might this impact a timeshare owner? A town filled with vacant lots may or not be an optimal place to stay, especially if there are few shops and restaurants, and little entertainment and nightlife, etc. And it may therefore affect whether or not timeshare boards may choose to reopen if it's a close case.

It'll be interesting to watch how all this unfolds.
Believe me, fort myers beach won’t be filled with vacant lots.
 

andre10056

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Believe me, fort myers beach won’t be filled with vacant lots.
Yeah. It sounds like there'll be a lot of high rise condos built on 20 foot high stilts. Can you build high rise condos on 20 foot stilts? I guess you can but they're going to have to be SOME stilts. :)
 

andre10056

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I have some familiarity with this particular property, well built (albeit way back in the early 1980's). There are 39 (all identical, all 2BR) units distributed over 3 floors, the ground level units having been completely decimated by Ian's storm surge (the separate small office building was also destroyed entirely). The two upper floors apparently sustained much less damage.

I find myself wondering if, when the reconstruction cost / insurance reimbursement / current code standards math is undertaken, the 13 destroyed ground level units could / would just essentially become "stilt support" in a rebuild, if necessary, in order to remain a timeshare property and still comply with current codes. Then again, that may not even be a realistic (or legal) option, since pursuing that option would essentially mean first buying out the ownership rights of +/- 50 weeks x 13 units or about 650 unit / weeks. Maybe that's not even a practical (or lawful) option -- I dunno. Just thinking out loud... :shrug:

The devastation of Fort Myers Beach is almost beyond comprehension. Timeshare properties aside, one has to wonder if it can or will come back as anything even remotely resembling its' former self or if instead (as rapmarks has previously mentioned), it just becomes land for the footings for (altogether too many) new high rise condos. :(
Thanks for the information about Tropical Sands. We stayed there years ago and thought that its first floor wouldn't do too well, and it apparently did even more poorly than I thought.

I once crossed the street from the TS to try to get to the gulf. There was a kind of ugly dark wooden building in the way but, as I recall, it had an alley that allowed me to approach what I thought would be the beach. And when I finally got to the end of the alley, I was amazed by what I saw.

Right in front of me was a brackish pool of water I wouldn't call it a "lagoon", just a brackish pool of water. And on the other side of the pool was a strip of sand. Not a beach as it was too narrow for that. Just a strip of sand.

I looked up and down that strip of sand and saw absolutely no one. Which was strange since it was peak season and the town was humming. It was actually kind of creepy. It was as if I had entered an unsightly uninhabited parallel universe. And I quickly made my way out to the street and peak season liveliness.

What an ugly view those people in that property had. I'll never forget that as it was so completely different from what I expected.

So I realized that, if I wanted "beach", I'd have to do some research. And then do some driving. And found out about Bowditch Point Park which we all thought was great.

My fondest memories of Fort Myers Beach, though, were the great basketball games I played at the indoor gym in the town rec center. That was a bit east of Estero Blvd. and, as I think I recall, it was a bit downslope from Estero Blvd. So I'm wondering what happened to that very nice community resource, open to all at no cost.
 
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rapmarks

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Barefoot beach, next to Bonita beach, is closed until at least 2024. It had boardwalks, a bath house and a building. If they can’t reopen a beach for over a year, imagine what’s happening with the properties nearby.
 

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Barefoot beach, next to Bonita beach, is closed until at least 2024. It had boardwalks, a bath house and a building. If they can’t reopen a beach for over a year, imagine what’s happening with the properties nearby.
Here's what I posted in another thread after talking to some people:

"So many vehicles and boats were overturned that there was a significant amount of gas that entered the water. And also all manner of industrial chemicals that may have been stored in Fort Myers Beach which, for a period of time, became part of the Gulf of Mexico. Fort Myers people with whom I've spoken are incredulous that people are actually walking barefoot on the beach when there is so much glass and other debris on the sand. Apparently also, red tide (i.e., karenina brevis) has become an issue due to the quantity of nutrients (like fertilizers) that were washed into the water."
 

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My concern about people exchanging their unquestionably unavailable timeshare weeks appears to be happening. Tonight, a January 7 Caribbean Beach Club in Fort Myers Beach is allegedly available on RCI. Do not reserve it and make your way down there. At best, perhaps they'll let you sleep in your car in the parking lot which hopefully wasn't too badly damaged.. :)
 

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I recall a timeshare property diagonally across from TSR on Estero Blvd. called Mariners Boat House (managed by VRI, when last I knew and next door to Carribean Beach Club). Being right on the shore (unlike Tropical Sands) I wonder how that timeshare property fared in the wrath of Ian...
Mariners Boat House is working on their renovations as I understand, all their first floor units were flooded and basically gutted, plus spotty repairs to the 2 floors above. They're not accepting any reservations for 2023. I'm following as best I can because I still have an active exchange for Oct, made b4 Ian, that I haven't cancelled yet, since I haven't seen something I want instead from TPI the exchange co. I traded into it once before and was looking forward to a return trip.

They were featured in a NY Times article right after the storm, here it is with a photo of its doors being knocked on:
 
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Yeah. It sounds like there'll be a lot of high rise condos built on 20 foot high stilts. Can you build high rise condos on 20 foot stilts? I guess you can but they're going to have to be SOME stilts. :)
it won't be stilts but, will be similar to Miami which requires building be built 20 feet above land. That would be parking lots etc.
 
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