Waterfront Park

On February 29, 2012, the ity purchased approximately 13 acres of waterfront property from the Safety Harbor Resort and Spa for general public use and enjoyment. The land is currently undeveloped and Safety Harbor plans to create a new Waterfront Park for residents and visitors to enjoy.

Use of Space
Most of the park will be open space and available for community events. However there is a 1-acre piece of the park near Veteran’s Memorial Lane that has been set aside for development.

Future Plans
The city already plans on extending the Bayshore Linear Greenway Trail currently being built along South Bayshore through the park. Additional development will be guided by a 15-member advisory committee made up of residents, which was assembled in May.

Concept #4: A Destination for Playing, Entertainment & Relaxation (Updated)
The public participation process revealed a community preference for the option prepared by Group #2 of the Steering Committee with the following adjustments:
  • Preserve existing boat launch and trailer parking until a relocation plan is developed
  • Delete day docks adjacent to pier to minimize infringement of wildlife habitat
  • Move kayak/canoe launch adjacent to main parking area
  • Scale down boardwalk system in mangrove preserve
  • Limit concrete sidewalks to main pathways
  • Construct future buildings as standalone projects once the parameters of the project are fully defined and determined acceptable to the community
With that feedback in mind, what is essentially proposed is an interconnected green belt park that showcase the natural beauty of the waterfront. A generous beach, an interconnected system of multi-use trails and boardwalks along the bay frontage, as well as other supportive passive park amenities provide a variety of desirable opportunities for unstructured play, rest and contemplation distinct from intensive recreation found in other city parks.

Event Space
The heart of the park provides a venue for bringing the community together for special events such as musical performances, movies, art exhibitions and fifi rework shows.

Shoreline Amenities
The shoreline remains mostly in a natural state with a strand of added beachfront between the mangrove fringe. An ADA accessible kayak/canoe launch is located next to the fishing pier just 120 steps from the visitor parking area.

Later Phases
Later phases of the concept plan incorporate progressively more diverse uses of the park in order to appeal to an increasingly wide range of Safety Harbor residents and visitors. More specifically, phase 3 of the plan includes a plaza with an interactive splash pad and seating which gently terraces down to the water. In addition, the plan preserves the potential for a future building to be sited on the 70 foot wide right-of-way (to be vacated) at the eastern terminus of Veteran’s Memorial Lane. The location of this building is shown on the phase 3 plan to demonstrate how this contemplated improvement will function as a part of the greater park facility. Together, these elements will create a public realm that can be enjoyed by all ages and segments of the community.

The initial focus of this proposal is delineating the boundary and gateways to the site, removing nuisance and exotic vegetation from the mangrove fringe, creating beach frontage and providing for public access in the form of parking and walkways. This will allow the public to safely enter and enjoy the property as other elements of the plan are constructed and incorporated. Prior to any work commencing, the City will prepare all necessary environmental studies, grading and drainage plans, along with the design and construction documents that can be put out for competitive bidding and permitting.

Final Phase
As funding becomes available, the City will begin the final design and development process of adding physical improvements to the property such as the special event platform, splash pad, and nature boardwalks. View the Concept # 4 Visual (PDF).