McKissack residents seek end to beach driving

Cars parked directly on the remains of the dunes next to a sign stating that driving on the dunes is Photo available for purchase

Cars parked directly on the remains of the dunes next to a sign stating that driving on the dunes is prohibited.

Lois Swoboda
Published: Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at 10:37 AM.

Residents of McKissack Beach say automobile traffic is destroying their sheltering dunes.

In April, residents of the beach community, founded in 1930, had a “no trespassing” sign posted on Gulf Beach Drive , which runs south off US 98 just west of the Carrabelle city limits. After complaints that the road was public property, county workers moved the sign.

Residents of McKissack Beach say they don’t want to deny access to a public beach, but do want to protect the dunes from automobile traffic.

In a telephone interview on Monday, Sue Reed said she and her neighbors are concerned of the constant traffic on the beach in spite of posted signs stating beach driving is illegal. She said, based on license tags, much of the traffic appears to be people from outside the county.

“I don’t know how they find it,” she said.

County Attorney Michael Shuler said McKissack Beach residents have no right to bar people from the beach or Gulf Beach Road . He said the road was originally constructed by the McKissack Beach developer, and acquired by the county through maintenance and improvements over time.

According to Reed, only the paved half of the road is county property; the unpaved portion adjacent to the beach is property of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). She said the residents of McKissack Beach have written to DEP requesting automobile traffic be barred from their property.

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