North Fort Lauderdale beach (A1A, north of Sunrise Boulevard) is undergoing major construction at this time. This section of Fort Lauderdale beach drew runners, bicyclists, and rollerbladers due to its wonderful, wide lane that ran parallel to the beach on the northbound lane of A1A.
This section of the beach also had ample metered street parking, a great alternative to the sometimes costly garages in the main hubbub of Fort Lauderdale Beach.
While the beach remains open in this area, the pedestrian lane and the parking is gone. At times, traffic can become very congested in this area during construction.
If you are planning on taking a trip to Fort Lauderdale beach, it is best to access from either the Las Olas Boulevard bridge, or the 17th Street Causeway. Another option may be to take Sunrise Boulevard, and park in Hugh Taylor Birch Park, which also offers paddle boarding and kayak rentals.
About the Renovation
This $11.8 million dollar renovation will enhance the overall aesthetics and usability of this beach area. According to the website of the city of Fort Lauderdale, the enhancements include:
- Constructing a wide beachfront promenade on the east side consisting of a paver sidewalk
- Installing a decorative sea wall with accent lighting
- Constructing a raised median in front of Birch State Park
- Constructing median islands and left turn lanes in the residential section
- Installing a new underground drainage system
- Relocating underground utilities, adjusting manhole covers and restoring beach showers
- Installing decorative, turtle-friendly pedestrian lighting on both sides of A1A
- Installing signalized pedestrian crosswalks at Birch State Park, NE 15th Court and NE 17th Street
- Installing new asphalt pavement on all lanes and parking spaces, new pavement markings and highway signs
The website also says that once the project is completed, both lanes of A1A will have wide sidewalks and bike paths, 232 on-street parking spots, and 17 beach access points.
Phase one construction is expected to be completed in December 2014, so until then we advise trying out other beaches and avoiding this construction area, because safety is key!
You can follow the construction project on Twitter @MyDOT_SEFL for updates on the project.