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Delray Beach leaders to discuss possibility of reopening beaches

Posted at 1:47 PM, May 07, 2020

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — The possibility of reopening beaches took center stage on Thursday afternoon in Delray Beach.

City leaders discussed how and when they would reopen beaches in the event that Palm Beach County officials allow that to happen.

Beaches have been closed for more than a month due to concerns over the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

On Thursday, the Delray Beach City Commission agreed that if beaches are allowed to open, the city will reopen metered parking along A1A, but not open all parking lots.

Commissioner Ryan Boylston said the city has to maintain the crowds.

"Delray beaches are minutes away from Broward, where their beaches will be closed, unlike Jupiter, which is more like an hour," said Boylston.

Certain parking lots will be reserved for city residents with beach stickers.

"I understand the desire to get out there. I want to get out there myself. It would be irresponsible if we don’t do it responsibly," said Leo Zamparelli, who's in favor of keeping parking closed should beaches open.

"It is kind of a tricky answer, of course. We want it open, but we have to do the right thing," said Vanessa Pereire, who wants parking available.

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Delray Beach leaders agreed that if beaches reopen, the hours will change for when lifeguards are on duty, and those lifeguards will watch out for people in groups of more than 10 people.

Currently, all beaches throughout Palm Beach County are closed, but county officials are scheduled to meet at 9:30 a.m. on Friday to determine if and when they should reopen.

Most beaches in Martin, St. Lucie, and Indian River counties have reopened with very few restrictions.