City Population: 45,296
North of Port St. Lucie is the City of Fort Pierce, named for the fort constructed by Lt. Col. Kendrick Pierce during the Second Seminole Indian War in the 1830s. Fort Pierce has a population of over 43,000, and a rural ambiance with ranching and citrus farming being significant factors in its economy. Florida has 4 million acres of pastureland and 1 million of grazing woodland, and is 12th nationally in the production of beef cows. This ranching tradition remains strong in the Fort Pierce area, and it is a highly attractive location for those seeking to enter or expand a cattle-producing enterprise.
Often called Sunrise City, Fort Pierce has a revitalized downtown waterfront area that retains its Old Florida scale and charm. It offers contemporary shopping, dining, great fishing and a range of entertainment and activities such as the Farmers’ Market, Bike Night, Friday Fest, Jazz Market and the city-owned and -operated 1,200-seat Sunrise Theatre for the Performing Arts. Like most of the Treasure Coast towns, Fort Pierce offers amazing beaches, and has both natural and artificial reefs making it a hub of diving and fishing activities. The Indian River Lagoon Estuary provides a haven for more than 4,000 plant and animal species.
The City of Fort Pierce retains its old Florida charm and scale, and in 2011 the historical Main Street Fort Pierce district received the Great American Main Street Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Fort Pierce participates in the same county Economic Development Council as Port St. Lucie.