NewsDriving Tampa Bay Forward


Gulfport's Shore Boulevard Improvement Project upgrades free beach parking, widens sidewalks

Posted at 5:03 AM, Apr 02, 2021

GULFPORT, Fla. — Families in Gulfport are now able to enjoy upgraded, free beach parking after city leaders made improvements to Shore Boulevard.

Shore Boulevard, with its small shops and waterfront access, has always been picturesque.

"The water is beautiful," said one lifelong resident. "All the little kids out go out there."

But now, Gulfport city leaders have made it easier for both visitors and residents to navigate. Not only did they widen Shore Boulevard, making room for additional parking spots, but they added newer, wider sidewalks.

Those behind the project said this waterfront district is now far more bicycle and pedestrian-friendly.

"It's the kind of activity and trying to provide the options that just weren't always there," said Fred Metcalf with the City of Gulfport.

One of the biggest changes you'll see is a newly-refinished beach parking lot. It has new, delineated spaces and it's all free.

City of Gulfport leaders opted for a construction project that would create a newly-paved beach parking lot with delineated spaces.

"So even though we didn't add a lot it it, it appeared that we did because they were defined," Metcalf said. "You knew where you had to park."

The newly-paved beach parking lot makes it easier for visitors to find parking spots in the free lot.

The city, also adding additional trails as a part of the Shore Boulevard Improvement Project, allowing them to connect Downtown Gulfport with both the St. Petersburg Trail System and the Skyway Trail Systems.