Parks to Benefit from Grant to A1A Group
The A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway has been awarded a $560,000 grant from the Federal Highway Administration’s National Scenic Byway Program that will allow for greenway enhancements at two Flagler County parks on State Road A1A, according to the Friends of A1A.
Sallie O’Hara, administrator of the Friends of A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway, said the federal funds will be complimented with a $140,000 local match from Flagler County, for a total of $700,000 available for recreational improvements at Varn Park and the River-to-Sea Preserve West.
The grant will allow for significant enhancements at the parks, chair of A1A Anne Wilson said in a news release from the organization.
“This is fabulous news that will allow us to bring numerous recreational improvements and benefits to the public and draw more visitors,” she said.
The improvements are expected to be completed within the next 18 months.
The Flagler County Greenway Enhancement Projects at both parks include adding improved entrance signs, expanded parking areas with asphalt entrances, facilities for picnics and relaxing, handicapped accessible restrooms, native landscaping and boardwalks across the dunes to the beach.
Trails will be developed with markers, including a 9-mile trail system at the River-to-Sea Preserve West. Educational interpretive information on the coastal habitat, area heritage and current cultural events will be posted on community boards at the site.
The improvements at River-to-Sea Preserve West will give visitors far greater amenities to the estuary side of the preserve on the Intracoastal River, which is practically unused compared to the River-to-Sea Preserve East and boardwalk just across the street and on the Atlantic Ocean, O’Hara said.
She said it was a real coup to be awarded the grant, given the competitiveness from other National Scenic Byways, but the real winners are the visitors who will benefit from the new amenities that will help them appreciate the Old Florida quality of life on public beaches.
Friends of A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway is a nonprofit organization that protects, preserves and enhances resources along the A1A National Scenic Byway. This citizen’s advocacy group partners with municipalities, governmental agencies and other civic groups to maintain and improve resources along the corridor
SOURCE: Friends of A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway