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Palm Coast Friday, Mar. 18, 2016 3 years ago

NEWS BRIEFS: Moody Boat Launch to close April 6 through May 20 for improvements

Also in News Briefs: Matanzas Woods Interchange ribbon cutting scheduled

Moody Boat Launch to close April 6 through May 20 for improvements

The following is a news release from the Flagler County communications office:

Flagler County’s Moody Boat Launch will be closed April 6 through May 20 for improvements.

“The scheduled upgrade will enhance the launch’s usability in a number of ways,” said Heidi Petito, Director of General Services. “The new system provides for ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliance, minimizes docking difficulties caused by fluctuating tides, and new lighting will promote boater safety and security.”

The closure includes the Moody Boat Launch — located at 825 Moody Lane in Flagler Beach — the parking area, restroom, and dockage on the Matanzas River. It does not affect Betty Steflik Preserve and boardwalk.

The scope of work includes dredging 1,650 yards of silt from the launch basin, thus improving navigability. The adjacent wooden docks will be replaced with an aluminum floating dock and gangway system.  Additionally, the existing restroom will be replaced with an ADA compliant facility.

Moody Boat Launch provides public access to the Intracoastal on the east shore, just south of State Road100. The closest alternative boat launches are located at Herschel King Park on the west side of the river at 1000 Grady Prather Jr. Cove, Palm Coast, and Bing’s Landing on the east shore at 5862 N. Oceanshore Blvd. in Palm Coast. 

Commissioner Nate McLaughlin address JAXUSA

The following is a news release from the Flagler County communications office:

Commissioner Nate McLaughlin addressed JAXUSA Partnership at its recent quarterly forum.

The forum met to discuss both the current trends and future needs for economic development.

“We are fortunate to be located in a strong economic corridor; the assets that the region offers are too numerous to name,” said McLaughlin, who also serves as chairman of the Economic Opportunity Advisory Council. “Over the last several years, Flagler County has reinvented how we do economic development. We now have a department with a dedicated annual budget, which eliminates the distraction of fundraising while providing a direct connection to the county commissioners with respect to infrastructure and improvement funding.”

McLaughlin praised the efforts of Helga van Eckert, Flagler County Department of Economic Opportunity executive director.

“She has built relationships with people at the state level and across the country,” McLaughlin said. “She is getting us a lot of notice by the people who are either looking to start or move businesses.”

McLaughlin also spoke on the benefits Flagler County has reaped with its many road improvements, like the Matanzas Woods Interchange at Interstate 95 and other projects largely funded through the Florida Department of Transportation.

“Also, since economic development is now part of the county administration, we are brought into the process early and able to assist in the planning process and to make accommodations for immediate decisions,” he said. “This improves turn-around times on permitting and improvements.”

JAXUSA Partnership is a private, nonprofit division of the JAX Chamber and is Northeast Florida’s regional economic development initiative.

Matanzas Woods Interchange ribbon cutting scheduled

The following is a news release from the Flagler County communications office:

It was less than a year ago that Flagler County was celebrating the beginning of construction for an Interstate 95 Interchange at Matanzas Woods Parkway. Now a ribbon cutting has been scheduled to celebrate its grand opening.

The ribbon cutting will be held at 3:30 p.m. on March 28 at the western on-ramp from Matanzas Woods Parkway. The interchange will remain closed until after the ceremony, so those planning to attend should take the parkway, which will be open.

“This is a very exciting day for our county,” said Flagler County Commission Chair Barbara Revels. “Besides the safety that having another interchange in the county provides, it also opens a lot of avenues for economic development and convenience for our citizens.”

The need for the interchange became apparent in July 1998, when wildfire consumed more than 84,000 acres and destroyed 71 houses. Former Gov. Lawton Chiles ordered a mandatory evacuation for Flagler County – about 35,000 residents.

“I am thrilled,” said County Engineer Faith Alkhatib. “This has been an amazing project. The costs of the overpass and the interchange together are $25.1 million, and the costs to Flagler County have only been 5 percent of that total – about $1.26 million.

The Matanzas Woods Parkway overpass at Interstate 95 was dedicated on Dec. 1, 2006, which provided motorists with better access to U.S. 1 in northeastern Palm Coast. The overpass project cost $12.6 million. 

With the dedication of the interchange on March 28, there will be three Interstate 95 access points in Flagler County.

The total interchange project cost is $12.5 million, with construction costs of about $9 million. More than 94 percent of those costs are being covered by the Florida Department of Transportation, as well as federal money. 

Construction began in June 2015 after the end of the school year. Improvements include the widening of the interstate to accommodate new acceleration and deceleration lanes, wet detention ponds adjacent to the roadway, sidewalks, lighting, overhead signs and landscaping.

“Completion was originally slated for April 2016,” Alkhatib said. “We are very pleased that this is being completed ahead of schedule and within the budget.”

City of Palm Coast offices to be closed Friday, March 25

The following is a news release from the city of Palm Coast communications office:

All city of Palm Coast offices will be closed Friday, March 25, for the Good Friday holiday. Offices will re-open on Monday, March 28, at 8 a.m. Recycling and garbage collection will proceed according to the regular schedule.


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