Navarre gulf access gets an early pass

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Kenny Wilder
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Tue Sep 01, 2009 12:46 am

Navarre gulf access gets an early pass
NWF Daily News
Dusty Ricketts
2009-08-31 00:49:40

NAVARRE BEACH — The committee working to reopen the long-closed Navarre Pass has new life after Santa Rosa County commissioners amended a plan that would have stalled the project.

Commissioners voted last week to approve an amended version of the Tri-County Joint Land-Use Study to remove wording that recommended no new passes leading to the Gulf of Mexico be cut.

"It’s a big victory," said Chuck Pohlmann, chairman of the Navarre Pohlmann Pass Committee, the group named after his late father that is trying to reopen Navarre Pass.

"That would have killed us," Pohlmann added. "We never would have been off the ground and never could get off the ground if that had been accepted that way by our county commissioners."

The Joint Land-Use Study was initiated in January 2007 to help plan for future growth at Eglin Air Force Base from the Base Realignment and Closure Act. The study recommended that Santa Rosa County discourage any new marine cuts, channels, passes or marine sanctuaries leading into the gulf.

Rather than approving the study as presented by Destin-based consultants Tetra Tech, commissioners approved an amended version that removed the restriction related to passes and marine sanctuaries.

Tetra Tech had made the recommendation to deter additional boat traffic in Eglin’s training ranges over the gulf.

"We’re not in an active firing zone," Pohlmann said. "This whole gulf coast is a firing zone but it’s not an active firing zone. If it was an active firing zone, you and I would not be living on the gulf coast because the military could do anything they wanted, including dropping bombs and shooting targets."

With the study amended, Pohlmann’s committee will resume its fundraising efforts for required feasibility and environmental impact studies.

Navarre Pass was a 15-foot-deep channel cut into Navarre Beach about 450 yards east of the Navarre Beach Bridge that allowed boaters access to the gulf from Santa Rosa Sound.

It opened in July 1965 and closed two months later when Hurricane Betsy filled it in.

Navarre now sits near the middle of a 52-mile stretch between gulf access points at Destin’s East Pass and Pensacola Pass.
Last edited by Kenny Wilder on Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Tue Sep 01, 2009 8:25 pm

Glad the commissioners listened to the concerns of the citizens where the authors of the JLUS study did not.
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Kenny Wilder
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Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:58 am

Navarre Beach Impact study by Kevin R. Bodge, Ph.D and Erik J. Olsen, P.E.

I received an e-mail from NBL Forum member Pete this morning with an attached PDF of this study. The document does not have date, but I think it dates back to about 1990.


CLICK HERE FOR PDF DOCUMENT
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Pete
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Sat Oct 29, 2011 9:21 am

In a publication called "Coastal Zone '89", based on a study by Olsen Associates, Jacksonville, FL, 1988 (one of the article authors - see reference at end of article), commissioned by SRCo-BOCC (see acknowledgement at end of article).
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Mon Oct 08, 2012 10:09 am

Has there been anything recent on this subject??? Just wondering if it is one of those sporadic concerns or an on-going study about the feasibility, etc.

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Kenny Wilder
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Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:05 am

The feasibility of a Navarre Beach Pass is dead! Last year the US Air Force said they will block any attempt regarding a Pass. If the Air Force doesn’t want a Pass then it ain’t going to happen.
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