Palm Beach plans to restore some after-hours beach access


In response to complaints raised by owners of Root Trail, the Palm Beach City Council will consider an ordinance exempting them from new city-imposed restrictions on access to certain public beaches.

After approving legislation in September that closes a section of beach – which includes the Root Trail entrance – from sunset to sunrise, council members will vote at their meeting today whether to grant accommodations special gates for owners to access the beach after dark.

A final vote could take place next month.

Landowners on Root Trail have a right of access to beach areas between Wells Road and Sunset Avenue, according to city documents.

Following:A stretch of sand on Palm Beach overrun with “crowds” raises a question: Is the beach public or private?

The decision was made following the council’s vote in September, which came in response to concerns raised by beachfront owners about unruly bathers.

The beach access areas between Wells Road and Sunset Avenue – north of The Breakers – were previously open until 9:30 p.m. Root Trail entrance was not fenced until this fall.

Following the September council vote, Root Trail landowners pressured council members to restore their access, calling the restrictions unreasonable.

“It seems very unfair to suddenly restrict this access in order to fix a problem that was not caused by the residents of Root Trail,” Root Trail owners William and Sheila McHenry said in a letter to council. October. “We’ve owned our home on Root Trail for 26 years and during that time we’ve enjoyed having full beach access.”

Once the ordinance receives final approval, Root Trail landowners will have access to the beach through a door key or combination lock, which would allow them to enter the beach. during restricted hours, depending on the city.

Also today, the council:

• Vote on draft ordinances that change the city code regarding artificial turf and construction hours within the city.

Both orders received first reading approval earlier this fall.

• Listen to a presentation on city-wide landfilling and vote on three resolutions related to the project.

• Approve candidates to sit an ad hoc strategic planning advisory committee who would be responsible for developing an updated strategic plan for the city.

Mayor Danielle Moore, who chairs the council, will nominate up to nine city residents for positions on the council.

• Review the section of the city code relating to hosting special events on public property and provide guidance to staff on potential changes.

Council members will meet at 9:30 a.m. at City Hall.

To join the meeting, go to or call 929-436-2866, webinar ID: 824 0928 9113

The board will hold its monthly development review meeting at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday. To join, go to or call 312-626-6799, webinar ID: 813 8570 2483

Jodie Wagner is a reporter for the USA TODAY Network of Florida. You can reach her at [email protected] Help support our journalism. Subscribe today.



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