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American Beach Crossroads Presentation & Community Workshop June 01, 2024




Community Planning Collaborative met with the community on June 01, 2024 in the second of a series of meetings to gauge community wishes for the area around the intersection of Gregg and Lewis Streets.


Please note the next meeting is scheduled for August 24, 2024 from 10am - 11am at the American Beach Community Center. (Not July 27 as indicated in the presentation.)


Click the image above or here to read the presentation.



Feedback collected during the meeting


Included in the meeting presentation:

I. Introductions and Recap Scope of Crossroads Effort

II. Follow Up Evans’ Rendezvous

III. Follow Up NaNa Dune Land Use and Zoning

IV. Discuss Potential Scenarios for Crossroads Area

V. Next Steps


General discussion:

● General consensus - no on-street parking on Lewis, Ocean or Gregg. Want to ensure people do not park there.


● Questions - about County ROW ownership and what County owns, lots County owns, prior Evans’ plans, and clarification about potential to move parking primarily to Burney


● Discussion about potential concession stand/location

○ Would make more sense at Burney Park

○ Or why not at Lewis Street and Burney Park so people don’t have to walk too far

○ Place for a mobile food truck or concessionaire. Permanent concessionaire might not make enough money

○ If it was a permanent concession space, County could rent it to an operator for the summers and it could be open space rest of year (like a shade shelter)


● Sea turtles and gopher tortoises

○ Amelia Island Sea Turtle Watch is looking for a place to store their ATV and some equipment

○ There are less sea turtle nesting sites in the American Beach area because of

vehicle traffic, as noted from Sea Turtle Watch data

○ Would like to see interpretive signage about the environment and wildlife

○ Community has previously put out 30-40 signs about gopher tortoises a few

years ago and now they are almost all gone, so any signage needs to be more permanent


● Additional comments

○ ADA access at Lewis Street for people to access the beach

○ Visually appealing at beach access

○ Provide some seating/shade

○ Trees are covering the no parking signs on Lewis so people park all the time and there is no enforcement

○ Have more shelters at Burney Park - community has asked for this before

○ Community wants to be involved in any site redesign for Burney


American Beach Crossroads Planning


● Short-term actions that could be done to improve area

○ Trim vegetation around no parking signs on Lewis and enforce no parking

○ Fix broken gate at Lewis Street beach access

○ Develop and install signage around environment, history and wildlife. Ex: Green Book sites historic signage - community has historic marker committee


● Community members in attendance were asked to rank their top 3 items from the list of items we have consistently heard about the Crossroads area:

○ Close Lewis Street beach (Vehicular) access

○ Underground utilities

○ Low level street lighting

○ Historic buildings are an asset

○ Quiet, community gathering spot

○ Native landscaping

○ Space for beach rentals or small concessions

○ Better drainage


See below for all of the answers. Based on the responses, general consensus of those in attendance for top three priorities are:


● Close Lewis Street vehicular beach access

● Underground utilities

● Evans’ Restoration and Heritage Park/Preserving Historic Buildings


● Discussion about who needs to be involved

○ County can start working on a list

○ FL Department of Environmental Protection

■ Regarding closing access, restoring that area and moving new access to Burney

■ Commissioner Huppman shared feedback on moving the access and feasibility in short-term - DEP slow to respond, state laws that deal with beach driving. Expressed it may be a longer-term goal

○ County’s grant consultant

■ Assist with identifying grant and federal funding opportunities to help with

projects


● Next Meeting

○ Planned to be final meeting for now -have a wrap up meeting to discuss all

meetings to date

○ Consensus to change date from July 27 to August 24 to coincide with American Beach Property Owners’ Association meeting


Additional information is available on the County’s website


Participants were asked to ranktheir top three priorities for the Crossroads area in the next 3-5 years.


Priority 1

  1. Close Lewis Street access to the beach

  2. Move tourism to Burney Park with improvements and enlargement at Burney end

  3. Move car beach access to Burney Park

  4. Underground utilities

  5. Reuse older historic buildings for arts academy for Black artists

  6. Close Lewis Street beach access to vehicles

  7. Close vehicular traffic at Lewis Street beach access

  8. Roundabout at Burney and A1A

  9. Underground utilities

  10. Close Lewis Street beach access to vehicles

  11. Close Lewis Street beach access to vehicles

  12. The redo of Evans

  13. Close Lewis Street beach vehicular access

  14. Eliminate beach driving

  15. Beach driving banned/Lewis Street ramp closed

  16. Close Lewis Street beach access to vehicles

  17. Keep beach natural

  18. Close Lewis Street to vehicular access


Priority 2

  1. Develop the historic park next to Evans

  2. Closing Lewis Street access to beach

  3. Build attractive durable walk to beach from Lewis

  4. Closing Lewis Street ramp

  5. Using public space for walking trail of historic facts

  6. Acquire funding (Grants) to move forward with Evans improvements

  7. Preserve Evans

  8. Master Plan for Burney Park with max capacity

  9. Close Lewis Street to thru traffic but still have access to get to the beach

  10. Preservation of historic buildings

  11. Underground utilities

  12. Redo of Lewis Street from Waldron to Ocean

  13. Historic building preservation - Evans

  14. Same as 1

  15. Heritage Park established and developed

  16. Change zoning of NaNa

  17. Improve Burney Park

  18. Underground utilities


Priority 3

  1. Finish Evans

  2. Protect sea turtles and gopher tortoises


  3. Preserving historic buildings

  4. Public art to celebrate A.L. Lewis, the community, Beach Lady

  5. Finalize zoning change for Nana Dune

  6. Quiet residential area not commercial

  7. Add tree canopy throughout American Beach right of ways

  8. Increase parking

  9. Underground utilities

  10. Quiet community/low-level street lighting

  11. Park close to Evans

  12. Low level lighting

  13. Same as 1

  14. Seating and concession area established

  15. Underground utilities



Summary of Responses

  1. Close Lewis Street vehicular beach access

  2. Underground utilities

  3. Evans Restoration/Preserving Historic Buildings and Heritage Park


Please direct any comments or questions to:


or



Read more about Community Planning Collaborative on their website






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