Palm Coast – The City of Palm Coast is seeking a multi-year grant for enhancements to Waterfront Park to build non-motorized boat access through a floating dock for a launch area. This would provide access for kayaks, paddleboards, canoes, row boats and others, further adding to residents’ recreational experience at one of Palm Coast’s most treasured parks.
The multi-year grant through the Florida Inland Navigation District has three parts: A, B and C. The City of Palm Coast was awarded part A in the amount of $146,000 in October of 2020 to be applied toward the cost of the improvements, particularly shoreline improvements.
“We are pleased to have been awarded the FIND grant to be able to move forward with adding such valuable features for the community to enjoy at Waterfront Park,” said Parks & Recreation Director Lauren Johnston. “Recent citizen survey results show that this park is one of the most visited parks in our city. With these improvements, it offers expanded opportunities for families to be active together outdoors.”
The City just submitted for part B of the grant, an amount of $211,250, to help with the cost of dredging. Following this, the City plans to ask for part C of the grant, which will be used to pay for the floating structure.
Bringing water access to Waterfront Park has been part of the park’s master plan since 2005. The 20-acre park's amenities currently include family picnic pavilions, playground, fishing pier and trails that provide the linkage to the City's entire system. It is also home to the Children’s Memorial Garden. A future launch area will be available for public use and also to organizations that utilize the Intracoastal Waterway for recreational activities.
Enhancements will be completed in two phases. In the first phase, dredging, site work, shoreline stabilization, dock installation, and a concrete pad installation will occur. This work is estimated to cost $1,200,000, split between the three-part FIND grant of $533,000 and city funds generated by impact fees at $462,000 and capital funds of $205,000. The second phase will expand parking and is estimated to cost $600,000 comprised of $228,000 in grant funds and $258,000 from city park impact fees and $114,000 from capital funds. Construction of phase one is expected to begin this fall with completion in the summer of 2022.
Waterfront Park was chosen as the Traveler’s Choice Award from TripAdvisor in 2020 and with this enhancement, it positions the park as a strong regional attraction for ecotourism.