Okaloosa Island Begins Construction On Multi Use Pathway

In Brief:

  • Okaloosa County will begin construction on a four-mile multi-use path with a groundbreaking ceremony on July 8, 2024, at John Beasley Park.
  • The 12-foot-wide path will enhance safety and provide recreational space for cyclists and pedestrians between Brooks Bridge and Marler Bridge.
  • Multiple funding sources, including tourism revenue and an FDOT grant, support the project, which is expected to open in early 2025.

On Monday, July 8, 2024, Okaloosa County officials will host a groundbreaking ceremony at John Beasley Park to mark the beginning of construction on a new multi-use path. The event will occur at 7 a.m. at 1550 Miracle Strip Parkway SE, Okaloosa Island.

The new path will stretch approximately four miles between the Brooks Bridge and Marler Bridge on Okaloosa Island. The 12-foot-wide pathway is designed to enhance safety and provide a recreational space for cyclists and pedestrians, allowing them to enjoy the scenic views of Destin-Fort Walton Beach while traveling on a protected route.

Okaloosa County Board Chairman Paul Mixon emphasized the project’s importance for the community. “The safety and well-being of our residents and visitors is a top priority, and this new path will improve safety while also providing a quality recreational asset in the County,” Mixon stated. He also praised the efforts of County staff and the dedication of Commissioner Carolyn Ketchel, who has been instrumental in advancing the project.

Commissioner Ketchel expressed her excitement about the project’s completion. “This path has been a vision for many people who have been looking for a safe place to walk, bike, and exercise on Okaloosa Island,” Ketchel said. We are fortunate to be able to move this project forward with input from local residents and the cooperation of our partners at Eglin Air Force Base.”

The project will also involve stabilizing the shoulders and parking areas along the south side of U.S. Highway 98, where the path will be constructed. Multiple funding sources, including tourism revenue and a grant from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), are being utilized to finance the construction.

The new multi-use path is anticipated to open to the public in early 2025, providing a much-needed recreational and safety improvement for the area.

Residents are encouraged to attend the groundbreaking ceremony or contact Okaloosa County officials for more information.

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