MIRAMAR BEACH — The Walton County Commission on Tuesday approved the purchase by Visit South Walton of a beachfront parcel for almost $1.54 million.
The property at 907 Scenic Gulf Drive is adjacent to a property purchased by Visit South Walton earlier this year. The additional parcel expands the total frontage of the future regional beach access to 410 feet.
Included with the newly purchased parcel is a structure that will allow Visit South Walton to build a bathhouse without limiting the existing Gulf views from Scenic Gulf Drive.
The price for the property is $50,000 below its average appraised value.
“This property adds beachfront to South Walton’s planned regional beach accesses,” Visit South Walton Executive Director Jay Tusa said. “Our goal is to ensure continued ease of beach access in South Walton so both locals and visitors can experience our beautiful beaches.”
Since last August, Visit South Walton has purchased seven beachfront parcels for a total of 747 feet of beachfront to be used as three regional access points. Visit South Walton also bought a 7.35-acre inland property that serves as additional parking in the Rosemary Beach area. The total cost was $25.6 million.
When the beachfront properties open as regional beach accesses, the number of regional beach access points in South Walton will rise from seven to 10. Each regional beach access point includes parking, bathrooms and a lifeguard station. The three new regional beach access points will be located in Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, and Dune Allen Beach.
The properties were purchased and will be maintained using bed tax dollars, a 4 percent tax collected on short term rentals.
The bed taxes for May 2017 are up 7 percent over May 2016, with the year-to-date total up 11 percent.