Volusia County adds off-beach parking in New Smyrna Beach

A plan to add almost a dozen off-beach parking spaces to New Smyrna Beach will move forward despite outcry from neighbors.

The Volusia County Council voted 4-3, Tuesday, to add a small, 11-space concrete parking lot on 16th Avenue at Hill Street. 

The lot will go in a long-closed beach access ramp.

It will include one handicap spot, as well as a walking ramp over the natural vegetation and onto the beach.

Last year, county leaders considered reopening that ramp to beach drivers, but the plan was shut down after residents in the neighborhood raised concerns about increased traffic in their narrow streets.

The parking plan was one of several designed to compromise at the ramp while working to address the tight parking situation that exists around the beach right now.

However, several neighbors and representatives for homeowners along the street spoke out against the parking plan to the council, saying it too will only add traffic that the neighborhood can’t handle.

While some on the council agreed, several members in the majority said that the plan was a good compromise and would also help to fix drainage issues in the area.

The council also approved a similar sized beach-side lot elsewhere in the county, but acknowledged more work was needed on the beach parking situation.