Delray Beach voters to decide on $120 million bond items for public safety and parks

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach voters will decide on a pair of bond items that could fund up to $120 million for a new police station and upgrades to city parks.

City commissioners this week unanimously approved two separate bond items to be placed on the ballot in next year’s city elections: $100 million for public safety and $20 million for upgrades to parks and recreation facilities. The items will be voted on separately during the elections on March 14.

The public safety bond would most notably fund a new police headquarters.

The current station, which is located at 300 W. Atlantic Ave., just west of Swinton Avenue, is too small, staff members said during a public meeting this week. The new facility would need three times the square footage to accommodate growth over the next 20 years, according to an study done by CPZ Architects.

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Additionally, the bond item would provide upgrades to numerous fire stations in the city.

If approved, the city would combine the fire station at 35 Andrews Ave., north of Atlantic Avenue and just west of A1A, with the city’s Ocean Rescue Division into one building. Delray Beach also would upgrade three other fire stations to accommodate growth and be more hurricane resistant.

The parks and recreation bond would fund up to $20 million in upgrades to Catherine Strong Park and Miller Park. At Catherine Strong Park, the city would build a covered artificial practice field and covered basketball courts. The covers would provide shade from the heat and allow activities to be held even if it’s raining. The bond also would fund improvements to the splashpad and a walking trail.

At Miller Park, the city has proposed creating 10 to 12 covered pickleball courts on a parking lot that’s currently being used as a temporary fire station.

The city also would upgrade restrooms, lighting and facilities throughout all of its parks.

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