SANTA ROSA BEACH — Waterside Investors LLC has introduced plans for a proposed public park at Historic Santa Rosa Landing, according to a press release.
The proposed park and boat access to Hogtown Bayou and the Choctawhatchee Bay would be at the end of 13th Street.
In addition to the boat ramp, park amenities include nature paths, a fishing pier, a boardwalk and dock, a lodge building for community groups, a playground, 24-hour security surveillance, boat trailer and general parking, and more.
A free boat slip would be made available to the Walton County Sheriff’s Department. Private boat storage will also be available, a service not currently available in South Walton, according to the release.
“This is a unique opportunity to create a lasting legacy for generations to come,” said Chick Huettel, local historian and newspaper columnist. “The chance to share the early history of this special place and preserve the land for a public park is something residents and visitors will be excited about and something we should all act upon right now.”
Because lots on the property were platted in 1905, the county recognizes them as lots of record, which permits a single-family dwelling on each of the 43 lots. The Walton County Board of County Commissioners will ultimately decide whether to approve the public park and therefore prevent the land from being developed for housing. Special consideration and protection of the wetlands on the property is being made in the park plans, according to the release.
More information about Historic Santa Rosa Landing is available at www.historicsantarosalanding.com, including a rendering of the proposed park plan. Residents can also visit the site to contact their local county commissioner to express their opinion about the proposed park.