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Get a first look at conceptual plans to redesign Boca Raton's waterfront parks

Posted at 5:23 PM, Jul 12, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-12 17:56:34-04

Wednesday designers will unveil plans to revamp Boca Raton’s waterfront parks. From including food vendors to adding kayak rentals, the options are endless.

“It’s watercolors everywhere you look, we love it,” Ron Garrett said as he described the water surrounding Florida.

The art teacher sees beauty and opportunity.

“Rutherford Park is really underutilized,” he pointed out.

Boca Raton city leaders have the same view. So they made enhancing the waterfront parks a priority. Consulting firm EDSA created redesigns for 14 city properties.

NewsChannel 5 received a sneak peek at concepts for Spanish River Park. Ideas include an improved canoe launch, more dock space, and a place to rent snorkels.

“I’m thinking these folks can really come up with some creative ideas to make all [14 properties] synergize and work together,” James Hendrey said.  

The Boca Raton man led a movement last year to preserve the abandoned “Wildflower" property in downtown as a public park. The city had plans to lease the space where Palmetto Park Road hits the Intracoastal Waterway to a restaurant.

Once the fence surrounding the property comes down, Hendrey envisions new life next to the city's only boat ramp.

“Parks make for community because it is a drawing card for people to come together to share ideas, or share a picnic, or share whatever,” Hendrey said.

The city’s consultant will present conceptual plans during a public meeting Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the library in downtown Boca Raton. Next, the city council will decide how to prioritize and fund the projects.