Bay Drive Park to open with July 2 ribbon-cutting ceremony
June 26, 2020 – Flagler County on Thursday, July 2, will open Bay Drive Park with a social distanced ribbon-cutting ceremony to showcase its newest gem – which includes an observation deck with binoculars (one ADA accessible), a walking trail, educational signage, elaborate dune walkovers, as well as a bocce ball court and a horseshoe pit.
“This is a beautiful park,” said County Engineer Faith Alkhatib. “It’s been a long time coming for our residents in Flagler County. The project team did a fabulous job.”
Those familiar with the Hammock’s storied history know the area of Bay Drive at its terminus at the ocean was known as either “Main Street Beach” or “Deauville Beach.” The original Bay Drive Park property dates back to the 1980s and 90s when the County Commission required developers to give Flagler County park property with public beach access before it would allow for the proposed private development of Sea Colony (obligated 1985/deeded 1994).
The park site was expanded in 2009 through a purchase from the Environmentally Sensitive Lands (ESL) Program. The 13-acre park addition was purchased for $5.85 million dollars at the request of nearby residents and was one of the first acquisitions after the 2008 renewal of the voter approved ESL program.
The $2.43 million enhancements were funded through a Florida Communities Trust Grant, developer contribution, and through the Environmentally Sensitive Lands Fund.
The ribbon cutting will be held at 10 a.m. at the park, which is located at the end of Bay Drive off of State Road A1A in the Hammock.
Total constructed improvements include:
- 7-acre stormwater pond, which serves as both a park amenity as well as the heart of an overall stormwater improvement project to help alleviate drainage and flooding problems in the Marineland Acres residential area.
- Installation of stormwater pipes, box culvert and stormwater structures
- Water and sewer improvements
- Entry drive and parking area
- Sidewalk along Bay Drive connecting the park site to the sidewalk along State Road A1A
- Two story building that includes restroom facilities, water fountain and showers on the first level and an observation deck on the upper level
- The upper level deck includes three telescopes (one of which is ADA accessible) for ocean viewing Educational signage has been installed both along the walking trail and on the upper level deck to highlight Right Whales and their migration and describing the native vegetation and wildlife
- A beach dune walkover boardwalk provides access to the beach, as well as provide ADA access to the upper deck
- Recreational elements – a bocce ball court and a horseshoe pit
Besides Alkhatib’s staff – Amy Stroger and Jerry Farley – the project team included: Crawford Murphy & Tilly, engineer of record; RLA Castle Bay Design Studio, boardwalk design; DJ Design, building architect; Cline Construction, site work contractor; and, Saboungi Construction, building contractor.“I want to give my special to the homeowner’s association and its president, George Guillano, and to the residents of Sea Colony and other neighboring residents,” Alkhatib said. “Their patience, cooperation, and coordination throughout the construction of this project has been amazing.”