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Ormond Beach Observer Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016 3 years ago

More parking to be added downtown

Diagonal parking is planned for New Britain Avenue.
by: Wayne Grant Real Estate Editor

They say, “If you build it they will come.” But sometimes they will come only if there is adequate parking.

That’s what many people, including city officials, believe about the downtown area of West Granada Boulevard. More parking is seen as needed to help the existing businesses prosper, and also to encourage more commercial development.

The city has recently taken steps to provide more parking in the historic New Britain area, which is directly north of the downtown area. It is bordered on the east by North Beach Street.


More parking behind Anderson-Price


The building and the small storage shed to the west of Riverside Church will be removed to make way for public parking.

The city has reached an agreement with Ormond Beach Riverside Church, located next door to the Anderson-Price Building, to purchase the lot to the west of the church for $65,000. The city will tear down two buildings, one currently used as a thrift shop and the other a storage shed, to create more parking in the lot.

Suzanne Heddy, executive director of the Ormond Beach Historical Society, was very happy to hear about the expanded parking, because there are currently only eight spaces behind the Anderson-Price building where the society has many events. The building is also leased out to various groups.

The new lot will tie into the Anderson-Price lot and provide a total of 39 standard and two accessible spaces.

“It’s the best and highest use for that property,” Heddy said. “We’re very happy about it.”

“It’s the best and highest use for that property.”

SUZANNE HEDDY, on a new public parking lot behind Riverside Church

She said it will benefit all of the surrounding businesses as well as the Historical Society.

The public parking should also help the downtown businesses, because a sidewalk will be constructed from the parking lot directly to New Britain Avenue. It will follow a city right-of-way that was only recently discovered.

Heddy gives credit for discovering the path to local historian Ron Howell, who found it while studying old maps. The path is called “Yankee Lane,” and Heddy suspects it goes back to the original settlement of New Britain, which was the beginning of Ormond Beach.

The cost of constructing the parking lot is expected to be $160,000, which will come out of Community Development Area taxes. The City Commission gave approval to the purchase of the lot and construction at their Jan. 19 meeting. Construction is expected to begin in September and take 120 days.


New Britain Avenue prepared for redevelopment


At their Jan. 19 meeting, the City Commission approved a storm water project in the New Britain area to prepare for the eventual addition of diagonal parking on the north side of New Britain Avenue. The storm water project also will make commercial development north of New Britain Avenue more attractive. 

The commission awarded a contract for $469,645 to JD Weber Construction Co., of Ormond Beach, for the storm water project, which will include installing storm water pipes that will direct water to a lot at 64 Lincoln Ave., which is owned by the city. The lot will be a retention area as well as a public park with sidewalks and plantings.

In a future project, about 50 parking spaces will be created along the north side of New Britain Avenue. To add the parking, the city will widen the street, utilizing city right of way. Residents will lose some of the lawn space that fronts New Britain Avenue, because of the wider roadway. The Planning Board met with neighbors on the plans and reported to the commission that the plans were well received.

 “Completion of (the storm water project) will allow for the addition of on-street parking for visitors to the downtown area and thus encourage the redevelopment of the downtown commercial area along New Britain Avenue,” according to documents in the agenda packet for the Jan. 19 City Commission meeting. Without the storm water project, any new development in the storm water project area would be required to have on-site water treatment, according to a city spokesman.

The money for the storm water project will come out of Community Redevelopment Area taxes.


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