BeachWalk Design Charette
Compilation of Public Input
On Tuesday evening, February 25th, a
public design charette was held at the Harbor View Center in downtown
Clearwater to solicit public input on the proposed BeachWalk project along
South Gulfview Boulevard. The quantity
and quality of comments and suggestions from the public were very helpful and
insightful. The following questions
were presented to stimulate group discussion on the various design issues
relevant to moving the “Beach By Design” planning experience forward and
into the design development phase. All of these comments will be carefully
considered as a part of the consensus building process that will shape the
physical image of the Clearwater BeachWalk.
The design team has recorded all of the public input and has provided
the following compiled listing of comments:
1. What makes you want to come to Clearwater Beach over
other Gulf Coast beaches?
walking, small town feel, quality of the beach, swimming, attractions and
family-oriented, beautiful beach, and calm.
variety of activities.
Great Beach, wide
beach and clean. Walkable beach
Generally good access,
generally available parking, other services food, retail, lots of people.
Sunsets and green
Small scale, do not
want a “Condo Canyon”
The Marina is a big
draw to the beach
Play area, Pier 60
access to beach
Clearwater Beach is
nationally known, people come to Clearwater Beach not Clearwater
White sand, low surf,
sunsets, marine life
quaint, small, everyone knows everyone
Take the water and
sand away and nobody would come
beach access (not overused)
This is the best beach
in the region that is accessible.
low-rise buildings, no high rises
2. What things do you think contribute to the character
of a community?
palms, sand, and water.
Residents have a sense
of belonging to Clearwater Beach.
causeway access experience.
Bad character: poor
structure, no pedestrian system, too auto-oriented, not many great public
access spaces, infrastructure is worn out, architecture needs to be refurbished
Close S. Gulfview for
specialty events and art fairs
Density – too dense
detracts from character
need to be updated, keep same type of retail/commercial, but freshen up
detracts from community character – utilities and electric wires
interactive play fountain
city plants and then rips it out, no maintenance
landscaping for low maintenance
Clearwater Beach needs
to find its own image
Need more landscaping,
plants and a lot of shade
3. What makes Clearwater Beach unique and memorable?
Great beach gradient,
wide beach, and clean water.
Soft sand, moderate
cost, and the family atmosphere.
The beach and water.
Since 1994 Pier 60 has
become a national gathering spot for culture
at Rockaways and Palm Pavilion at sunset
should be a destination but there is no programming as a Destination Tourist
4. What “waterside” places have you visited that
exemplifies what Clearwater Beach should be?
Pier 60, marina, and
North Beach beaches
Ft. Lauderdale, FL;
South Beach, Miami; Virginia Beach, VA and Seaside, FL
Downtown Dunedin, FL
St. Armand’s Circle,
Coronado Beach, San
Siesta Key, Longboat
Key and Annamarie Island
1. What area on Clearwater Beach leaves you with a
positive and memorable experience?
- The pedestrian crosswalks are friendly.
- Sidewalks around Pier 60 Park.
- North Mandalay is looking good.
- The beach is the best.
2. Where is the pedestrian experience the most
- Gulf Boulevard, Gulfview, and Coronado.
- Wherever there are narrow sidewalks adjacent to
- Poor sidewalks.
- Very auto-oriented.
- Lots of signs.
- Lots of dumpsters on Coronado
- Shell sidewalks are hard on bare feet and
3. Where is the pedestrian experience the most
- South Gulfview and Coronado.
- Crossing the entrance to the beach from marina
to east shore.
- Narrow, broken sidewalks.
- New Mandalay is great – all else is poor and
- Crosswalks near roundabout are very dangerous
4. What design elements would make the experience
better or more enhanced?
- Pedestrian overpass, elevator, ADA accessible,
and wider sidewalks away from the street and closer to the beach.
- Move bus stops away from pedestrian crosswalks.
- Wide separation from vehicles, lush
landscaping, date palms, shade, water fountains, benches, and doggie water
- People place, people watching, more food and
- Need safe pedestrian access to East side, Cross
access to Hamden
- Need more walkways on east side, not west side
- Improve sidewalks
- Wide walks on business side, do not like walks
close to vehicles
- Like meandering walks on beach side
- Level of pedestrian service should not be less
- Need adequate crosswalks and lighting of
- Need pedestrian access to N. Mandalay from
- Wider sidewalks because they are inadequate for
rollerblading, bikes and walkers
- Benches are always good if there is wide
walkways but not too close to the street, that can be dangerous
Retail and Economic Development:
Based on your present
knowledge of this area, does the existing retail and commercial development
support the continued growth of tourism? Of the local residential market?
No. Present use of available land is highly
Old, outdated, and
Poor beach image.
Not a merchandizing
area with any theme.
Need more things to do
“out of the sun” and more things for kids
Private sector will
take care of economy
be at same scale and character
Clearwater Beach is a
blue collar beach
Storefront appeal is
lacking, needs to be more inviting
Need more activities
Tourists need shopping
on the beach to keep them and their money at the beach
Right now the beach is
not attractive for development
2. What types of retail and commercial development,
would you like to see more/or less of?
- Less T-shirt shops, no cheap tourist shops,
more family oriented restaurants
- More: restaurants, nightlife, themed and fun
retail, and more entertainment.
- More outdoor cafes and restaurants like
- More arts and entertainment activities
- Need quality retail, restaurants, hotels and
- Do not want upscale development like St.
- Small scale development, small building height
- Tourist fishing boats from marina
- Specialty shops, more variety, outdoor market
- Need good mix of high end and affordable shops
- Ron Jon Surf Shop, a martini bar
1. What kind of driving experience would you expect,
given the functionality of each street? Gulfview Boulevard as a driving
experience and Coronado Drive as a major arterial.
One way traffic (2
lanes) on Gulf Boulevard going south and Coronado going north
Each roadway should be
Coronado should be 4
lanes, but low speed.
Poor driving, poor
Make Gulfview scenic –
proposal to make Coronado an arterial is great.
Which street is the
thru street? All other streets need to be calm
Beach is not an
expressway/thru way to Sand Key
2. Given the increases in pedestrian, rollerbladers,
cyclists, trolleys and buses and the downplay of automobile dominance, how
would you make the experience for all of the users be equally pleasurable?
What downplay of
speed. Need to slow down traffic
zones for each user.
Like the serpentine
3. Would you personally use other modes of
transportation to access this area?
Yes -- have monorail
and a ferry.
No – I live here.
Yes, I do at times. Would use more if Jolley Trolley ran more
hours, more frequently, especially during Coachman Park events.
Long range transit
access from Downtown.
More Trolley movement
Add carts and bikes.
disadvantageous when carrying a lot of beach gear
needs to be more frequent and reliable
should be an integral part of the process
Monorail can not
facilitate equipment from downtown parking
1. Where should the city
provide additional parking for South Beach?
Parking issue is
Need a compromise.
Parking should be first consideration
New development should
The lot near the
Adam’s Mark hotel
Right where the
ground-level parking is now. Double the
number of spaces by making a second level with no roof.
On land already owned
by the City.
Needed at very south
Needed mid-beach to
replace the beach lot.
Needed north at
Pelican Walk area.
Parking on Coronado
Taking away parking on
the beach is not a good idea. Like close proximity to beach. Other places
require a cab or bus to get there
Parking next to beach
is a plus and an attraction
Do not want to lose
beach side parking
Parking garage one
block from beach
Visual impact of
parking garage at beach
Need to establish a
limit of saturation
Feel removal of beach
side parking is appeasing the developers, not the beach patron
Move parking off
beach, but still convenient
Parking must be
maintained and centrally located
No parking on the
Drop-off are not good
Don’t take parking off
Parking should be
close to the beach
Parking has to be on
2. Who should pay for the
Public and City
The people who park
there – raise the rates during peak periods.
Do it now to test the market. Raise the rates to build more parking
All of the users of
the parking lots.
Parking should be
built by City
City should fund
additional parking construction
Parking fees are too cheap’
City should build
Additional Issues or Comments:
Have next charette at
Recreation Center at Beach
- Beach by Design is a wonderful concept. We need to keep the uniqueness of the beach. Bring more specialty shops, restaurants
and motels. Keep your Mom &
Pop businesses as well as high-end shops and hotels.
- Make new parking prior to eliminating any parking. Keep parking close to beach to
facilitate the ability to take coolers and equipment to the beach. Look at change in traffic flow to
reduce bottleneck going south.
Wide sidewalks. Please
change from shell walkway. It is
very hard on bare feet as well as not rollerblade friendly.
- This was a great exercise n sharing of
ideas and a good mix of people from many areas: residents, developers,
City employees and City officials.
- Clean out the Poinsettia/ East Shore
grease pits and rat holes. I live
on North Beach and am embarrassed to have visitors turn at east shore to
come to my house in 900 block of Mandalay.
- Tonight’s meeting was not advertised as a
charette, nor was the length of the meeting stated. Ensure public involvement by: 1)
Publishing the meeting schedule and agenda well in advance; 2) Publish
meeting materials on the City web site well in advance of the meeting; and
3) publish meeting results on the City web site.
- Having lived in South Beach, Fort
Lauderdale, also Cocoa Beach, what brought me back to Clearwater beach was
the village atmosphere and not a canyon of high rises. We need specialty shops, parking and
flat streets. Something needs to
be done about the danger at the roundabout to both auto and
pedestrians. The biggest problem I
have is the notification of the public when having “charettes”.
- Please don’t repeat on South Beach: what
was done on North Mandalay Roads should be flat – no excuses. Money should do it right the first
time. Keep a village
atmosphere. No more condos. Motels—rebuilt or new, but no
condos. Mass transit rather than
build numerous garages. St. John’s
pass has a desirable shopping experience – shade from heat and easy access
from North beach -- that’s pedestrian friendly, reduce building footprint,
so sidewalks can be wider, buildings can overhang. Parking should not be on the “beach”. Clearwater Beach needs to be pedestrian
friendly – Europeans who visit want transportation – families want good
atmosphere. Poorly advertised to
- Restrooms are a public necessity and
should accommodate mothers with small children (i.e. changing tables) and
should be more private.
- The city should focus first on
infrastructure and traffic patterns.
- The traffic circle moves traffic then
slows down and is choked after the bridge.
- We must provide a reason for people to
want to go to the beach.
- Increase mobility-traffic, pedestrian and
- Focus on infrastructure and mobility