A dozen years ago if someone said they were moving to the Golden Triangle you might have to scratch your head then ask them to be more specific. So how did a downtown Boca neighborhood achieve such a recognizable moniker? The Golden Triangle is not an official designation but an immediately recognizable one.
We need to do the same for the barrier island – create a brand through local initiative and community support. For background on this initiative see the Bocafirst article Welcome to Beachside.
Branding is not just for companies
Branding is also for cities, towns and even neighborhoods. As populations become younger it is even more important for an area to have a brand to call its own. With the growth of our colleges we find that Boca Raton is getting younger, highlighting our natural amenities helps to secure that this population will become permanent residents.
It is therefore curious that a legendary section of the city has no official or unofficial name designation. For years we have called a tropical stretch of Boca ‘the barrier island’. A quick search of the word ‘barrier’ produces this charming definition, “an obstacle that prevents movement or access”. Yikes! Not a very inviting description.
The Boca Beachside Brand
It’s time we made life easier for visitors and newcomers by officially branding our island parcel as Boca Beachside. This term will be immediately recognizable as Boca’s spot for sunshine and ocean activities.
Beachside is also a bustling community inhabited by thousands of people who contribute thousands of dollars to the city each year. Therefore, at the Cities 2020 Goal Setting Session we would like to see the Boca Beachside initiative be put on the agenda.
The initiative has to begin with safety on Beachside’s main road, East Palmetto. It can sometime resemble a race track after the bridge has been up with cars zooming over to the island fast and furiously. Our BRPD have been very attentive to our concerns but they can’t be there 24-7.
To that end we ask for county and city to cooperate on this County road by installing a crosswalk across EPPR at Wavecrest Way. Pedestrians seeking to cross East Palmetto to get to the ice cream shop or one of the other local eateries can be caught between streams of speeding cars.
Roadside parking must be reduced to allow for greater visibility when exiting neighboring streets or parking lots, and the speed limit must be reduced to 20 mph. Additionally bike lanes must be sectioned out on East Palmetto.
Once we enact these safety measures we can move on to the fun part of branding Boca Beachside, such as art in public places, wayfinding signs and continuing the charm across the bridge by installing decorative street lamps, sidewalk widening, paving and landscaping.
The sky’s the limit – or should we say ‘the ocean’!
If you want to swim in the surf, play golf on the dunes, do yoga at the Pavilion, or explore Gumbo Limbo’s nature paths you’ve got to visit Boca Beachside. Our beach side amenities set us apart from other south Florida cities. We can enhance the brand of the entire city by calling attention to a unique destination spot.
Welcome to Boca Beachside.