PSJ commissioners name focus group for park planning

Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013 at 09:19 AM.

While noting issues with aspects of a plan for a city bay front park, Port St. Joe city commissioners last week appointed a focus group to serve as a “sounding  board” as the plans move forward.

The park plans, with a working title of BayPark but which incorporates much of George Core Park and the historic Maddox House, have been presented to the city commissioners and the Board of County Commissioners.

They are the product of the Port St. Joe Redevelopment Agency which secured a planning grant for the proposed park.

A public workshop was held on the planning document two weeks ago in the Port St. Joe commission meeting room.

The park is envisioned as the relocation spot for the Cape San Blas Lighthouse, which was awarded to the city by the Department of Interior last month.

“The focal point is getting the lighthouse moved,” said city manager Jim Anderson. “Regardless (of what is decided about the park) we have to figure out how we get the lighthouse moved.”

The park plans have come under criticism, during the prior workshop and BOCC meetings, for aspects that some see as putting too many structures along the water, offering the look of an amusement park in parts and being too grand in scale for the city to pull off.

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