To improve recreational encounters for cyclists, hikers and fishing enthusiasts, Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) recently granted approximately $1 million in funding to Escambia County for its Bob Sikes Pier, Parking and Trail Restoration Project.
"We are pleased to partner with Escambia County to improve and enhance the Bob Sikes Pier and surrounding recreational area,” DEP Deputy Secretary Drew Bartlett said. “Projects like this are vital to our communities and increase access to the diverse natural resources Florida has to offer.”
Situated on Santa Rosa Island, the Bob Sikes fishing pier will receive upgraded solar-powered lighting, while surrounding multi-use trails will be widened and improved. Additionally, parking and traffic will operate more efficiently.
"We are excited about this project that will provide enhanced safety and access for both Escambia residents and visitors to the fishing pier and trail restoration,” Grover Robinson, Escambia County Commission chairman, said. “Our goal is to provide the best amenities to enjoy our natural resources … Thank you to the state of Florida and DEP for supporting this project."
Funding was obtained partially with compensation following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill, which profoundly affected Florida’s landscape and economy. Efforts by DEP and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission in cooperation with federal agencies succeeded in restoring natural resources through projects such as this pier area refurbishment.