Amelia River-To-Sea Trail

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Friends of the Amelia Island Trail, Inc.
Mike Pikula, President
September 4, 2018 11:00 a.m.

Amelia Island residents and guests have been enjoying rides and walks on the 6.2 mile Amelia Island Trail (www.ameliaislandtrail.com ) since 2013. Very soon we will see construction starting on our island’s newest pedestrian/bicycle trail.

The Amelia River-To-Sea Trail (ARTS Trail) will offer pedestrians and cyclists a paved recreational path that, as its name implies, will link the Amelia River with the Atlantic Ocean. This new three mile long trail will run generally east to west from South Fletcher Avenue’s Beach Access #30 to the west alongside Simmons Road, then continue through an undeveloped Simmons Road right-of-way to an intersection with Bailey Road, and then turn south crossing the Amelia Island Parkway into the City’s Ybor Alvarez Ball Park. It will then continue westward to the banks of the Amelia River.

New “ARTS Trail” to be constructed across Amelia Island.

The portion of the paved path between S. Fletcher and the City ball fields is being funded by a federal grant awarded by the North Florida Transportation Planning Organization (NFTPO). The segment from the ball fields to the river is being funded and constructed by the Crane Island Development which has granted public access to the trail and to a river overlook at the western terminus of the trail. Various trailside amenities will be installed by City, County and Friends of the Amelia Island Trail, Inc.

Related to the pending trail construction, the City of Fernandina Beach recently announced their plans to construct parking, a nature trail and restrooms near the new trail alongside Simmons Road between Egans Bluff Road and Persimmon Circle.

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Subject to approval of the contract award in the next few weeks by the Nassau County Board of County Commissioners, Florida Infrastructure Inc. of Callahan, FL., will be the primary contractor for the $1.5 million project. According to Nassau County officials, construction start is expected by October, 2018.

This trail project is the result of successful collaborative efforts by Nassau County, City of Fernandina Beach, the North Florida Transportation Planning Organization, Florida Department of Transportation, Crane Island Development, Friends of the Amelia Island Trail, Inc., and supportive local citizens.

 

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One Response to Amelia River-To-Sea Trail

  1. Wonderful idea but can the City pull this off without cutting down a bunch of trees just to build a parking lot (for cars) for a walking and biking trail? How about building the parking lot and restroom facilities on an already cleared piece of land – like something at the airport or at the ball fields? Building a parking lot on Simmons at the proposed location will destroy a nicely wooded parcel of land (a diminishing resource) and still be just over a kilometer away from the beach. Where’s the City’s goal of “no net loss of trees” going with this plan?

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