Florida’s New Amusement Park: Kelly Slater’s Wave Pool
What are you going to do next?
Kelly Slater is poised to turn his fantasy into reality. In the early stages of planning the first commercial venture of his now-famous wave pool design, he appears to be heading back to Florida. Looking at a location in north-west Palm Beach County, the East Coast may sooner enjoy a considerable upgrade to its wave quality.
Currently, there is a meeting scheduled with the Palm Beach County Commission for March 23. The meeting is intended to be a zoning hearing where the commission is considering amending the county’s “planned industrial park” regulation, which would open the door for larger commercial facilities, such as a Kelly Slater Surf Ranch. The motivation behind the amendment is reportedly based on Slater’s desire to give something back to the Sunshine State. They are currently looking at an 80-acre plot in the 1,300-acre Palm Beach Park of Commerce, also known as First Park South Florida.
The Slater Wave Co. application has also noted the facility could hold “special events,” which leads one to wonder if a CT event in Florida isn’t too far off.
“The Surf Ranch would be comprised of a man-made surfing lake and support facilities intended for ‘public recreational and competition purposes,’ which may include larger events requiring separate approvals for Special Events,” reads the application.
According to the application, the Surf Ranch would be situated in the northwest corner of the park. The actual wave pool is described as a concrete, human-made lake approximately 2,000 feet long and 185 wide.
“It may be beneficial to note that the land area currently under consideration has been available for over ten years for development,” reads a statement by Joni Brinkman of Urban Design Kilday Studios, the group that filed the application. “The narrow configuration of the parcel has inhibited the marketing of the property for larger warehouse or manufacturing/processing uses desired for the existing IG Use Zone [industrial] designation on the 80+ acre parcel. Code amendments to allow for the use to be considered by the BCC will allow for a tax-generating facility to be constructed on the site that will focus worldwide surfing sport attention on Palm Beach County.”
Slater has remained mum on the subject as he’s pre-occupied with fighting is way out of Round Two of the Quiksilver Pro at the moment.
We’re only a week away from the Palm Beach County Commission meeting on March 23, if all goes well, Florida’s might just forget about Sebastian Inlet, New Smyrna and spinner sharks.
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