$985K Shoreline Park Wetlands Trail Boardwalk Project Starts This Week

Posted on November 9, 2021 by Staff reports

The Shoreline Park Wetlands Trail Boardwalk Project construction will start this week, and a ribbon-cutting is planned for the Summer of 2022.

The Wetlands Trail Boardwalk will provide a direct connection between the 4-mile multi-use loop (under construction), Gulf Breeze Community Center, Shoreline Park South, wetlands and Santa Rosa Sound.

Environmental education opportunities will be enriched by connecting wetland habitat to the Community Center’s after-school Science Technology Engineering And Mathematics (STEM) program.  

Construction will consist of a 1,600’ pile-supported elevated boardwalk with composite decking over the wetlands, an ADA beach access ramp, and an uncovered nature viewing gazebo with bench seating.

The contractor is Custom Built Marine Construction and the consultant engineer, McKim & Creed. The construction period is 8 months. The laydown area is south of the dog park, cordoned with construction fencing. Citizens should expect to see large equipment in the area such as excavators and pile drivers.

“This project is the last major trail extension of the City’s 1998 Shoreline Park South Master Plan,” said Mayor Cherry Fitch. “It would not be possible without the support of the State of Florida, which recognizes the importance of ecotourism and wetlands habitat.”

Fitch also issued a special thank you to Florida Senator Doug Broxson and Representative Alex Andrade for “championing” the project. Additionally, she thanked the Florida Department of Environmental Projection, which funded 50% of the $985,190 total cost. She also thanked Santa Rosa County, which designated $33,333 in tourism development monies and $30,000 in discretionary funds for the project. The City of Gulf Breeze’s non-tax dollar reserves was used to fund the $441,667 remainder.