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Date of Issue: August 20, 2008

Improvements planned for Manatee Public Beach

Lots planned for lot
Manatee County, in partnership with the city of Holmes Beach, is planning improvements for the Manatee Public Beach parking lot. Islander Photo: Lisa Neff

Manatee County commissioners approved a draft interlocal agreement with Holmes Beach for the placement of a new bus/trolley shelter at Manatee Public Beach.

The beach is operated by the county but within city limits.

The agreement provides for the installation of a shelter like those used at trolley stops throughout Holmes Beach rather than the mainland bus shelters used by Manatee County Area Transit.

The city’s shelters are built to withstand a Category 2 hurricane and meet federal Americans with Disabilities Act requirements.”

The beach shelter, estimated to cost about $8,000, will be purchased and installed by the city, which will be reimbursed by the county using money from a Federal Transit Administration grant.

The county, under the terms of the agreement, will maintain the shelter for at least 10 years.

Also, county commissioners recently received a memo outlining proposed improvements at Manatee Public Beach. In addition to the new bus/trolley shelter, plans call for a system of sidewalks from the shelter to the parking lot and gift shop and cafe.

Parking spaces for ADA accessibility will be widened to better accommodate vans, and new landscaping, turtle-friendly lighting and signage will be placed at the beach, according to Cindy Turner, director of the county parks and recreation department.

The parks department is working with the county property management and community services department on the project, which Turner said should be completed by December.

“Unless permitting becomes an issue,” she said.