1st Street in Neptune Beach gets facelift with new palms | News

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1st Street in Neptune Beach gets facelift with new palms

NEPTUNE BEACH, Fla. -- The new year ushered in a major landscaping change on 1st Street as nearly 100 new sable palms stand tall, replacing ones that died or were destroyed over the years.

"Mostly construction, there were some large city projects in the 80s and 90s that really tore up the system," said Joshua Messinger, who heads up the Ish Brant Beautification Committee.

That committee donated $5,000 to the project that had a price tag of almost $20,000. "We see this as historical restoration to bring back Neptune Beaches' historical coastal beauty," Messinger said.

An 18-block stretch a block away from the ocean is where the new palms grace the landscape with wooden supports and watering bags.  Another five were planted at nearby Jarboe Park as part of the project.

Neptune Beach Mayor Harriet Pruette is proud to see First Street start to resemble what it looked like years ago. "I can remember in the 50s, used to visit my aunt and this street was lined in trees," recalled Pruette.

The city is watering the newly planted palms with some homeowners helping out by handling the ones in front of their homes.  The project also has support from the community after the trees were planted last month.

"We received $2,500 in donations from local citizens," said Messinger, who is now eyeing what else can be done -- with Penman Road now on the radar for beautification. 


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