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Deciphering the Paid Parking Initiative in Seaside

Answering questions about the paid parking initiative

For our most recent parking details please click here.

When Seaside announced our new paid parking initiative, we knew that there would be growing pains. We’ve listened to what our patrons say, and what locals say, and we’re happy to address some of the biggest questions around the changes.

Here are some of the questions we’ve received and our answers. And as always, if you have any specific questions please feel free to ask us on social media. We always make sure to respond.

“Why make people pay for parking?”

Seaside has always been about enhancing and protecting the human experience. If you have come to Seaside during peak hours, you know the traffic can get really backed up with people circling for up to an hour looking for a parking spot. Implementing paid parking has cut down on the constant circling of vehicles. Now you don’t have to walk past a line of parked cars spewing fumes in your face, filled with distracted drivers who are hunting for a spot instead of focusing on the road. Now, you can just enjoy the experience.

“I miss the old days! Why can’t Seaside stay the same?”

Due to the attractive lifestyle, culture, and ever-growing popularity of our town’s merchants and restaurants, people have grown to love our area; with growth comes change. We have monitored the growth over the past several years and have made adjustments in an effort to make your future experience as enjoyable as possible.

“There’s already not enough parking.”

People intuitively understand that if you give something away for free you’ll run out of it, and that applies to parking too. The idea is to price parking so that there’s always ten to fifteen percent occupancy so that you can have that “good old days” experience of driving up to the place you want to go and easily find a spot, which is something you couldn’t do before. We may need to adjust the price and we’re open to feedback from you.

“You’re just doing this to make money.”

People think we’re operating the parking initiative to make more money and/or because we don’t want people here, but the opposite is true. All of the money collected from parking goes towards our shuttle and to the company that has been contracted to run the paid parking service.

For more information on the New Urbanism principles, on which this decision was made, please watch the videos below:

The High Cost of Free Parking

Environmental Cost of Parking Lots

Dr. Shoup’s Parking Reform

Commonly Asked Questions & Answers

Is there any beach access when we visit Seaside?

When you book a vacation home rental in Seaside, you gain access to the specific pavilion on the street where your home or cottage rental is located. (Each street is managed by its own HOA, and access is determined by location and HOA rules.) Outside of access guaranteed to rental guests, members of the public may access the beach at SEASIDE®’s Coleman Pavilion by booking through Cabana Man. You may book a chair rental ahead of time or can try walking up to make a reservation. Keep in mind, reservations may sell out during peak times. Reserve Here.

Why did you close the public beach access between Seaside & Watercolor?

The Van Ness Butler Regional Beach Access, located between Seaside and Watercolor, was previously a public beach access granted to the county under a legal agreement that allowed public use. That legal agreement is no longer in place, and the property is currently owned exclusively by Watercolor. In whole or in part, this property was never owned by Seaside.

 Why charge for parking when other areas don’t do this?

Seaside is proud to be a leader in the area with early adoption of community-minded solutions. Offering a public shuttle directly to Seaside as a complimentary perk to visitors is a large-scale responsibility that we opted to take on. As you can imagine, the cost for this endeavor is significant, and while we see this as an important amenity, the cost of parking works to partially cover that cost. We understand that paying for parking might be a new concept to some, but the goal is to keep the fees manageable for guests who prefer to park within Seaside.

Will you offer a free shuttle this year?

Seaside is again offering a shuttle that is accessible to guests, locals, and employees at no cost. Our complimentary shuttle will pick you up from a designated lot off of Hwy. 331. S and loop to Central Square, with pickup and drop off at the Lyceum gateway. Multiple shuttles run simultaneously to minimize wait times and accommodate as many riders as possible. Shuttle hours of operation are 6 a.m. to midnight, 7 days a week. 

 

SEASIDE® Transportation Plan for 2024

As families and friends plan to vacation in SEASIDE® this year, we anticipate a bustling town center filled with award-winning shopping and dining enjoyed by those in SEASIDE® and other 30A communities. Whether you’re driving in for the day, planning to bike into town for the afternoon, or catching our complimentary shuttle, there’s an easy way for everyone to get to SEASIDE®.

Beginning March 8, 2024, the managed parking program will be in effect, with hourly rates partnered with our complimentary Seaside Shuttle, which is available for employees, guests, and locals. Like last year, the paid parking experience will have hourly rates along Smolian Circle, varying by day, occupancy levels, and events. This allows us to maintain proper vacancy levels so visitors have available parking to use and ensures that the parking is most efficiently managed. 

This year’s complimentary shuttle services will pick up at a reserved SEASIDE® lot off of Hwy. 331 S., just past the Sanctuary at 331 Apartment Complex, and drop off under the Lyceum Archway in the center of SEASIDE®. The shuttle is available to guests and employees and runs daily from 6 a.m. to midnight, with three shuttles running at all times. See the map below on where to catch the shuttle and the route. 

Upon arrival, you will notice signs placed around Smolian Circle letting you know what zone you have parked in. Input your license plate number and payment information, then head into SEASIDE® to enjoy your day! We encourage visitors to download The Passport Parking app in advance for a simple parking experience. The Passport Parking App can be downloaded here

Please note, if you are staying in SEASIDE® Town Center, the vacation rental agency you booked will provide you with a parking pass allowing parking in the areas for your stay. 

Over the last few years, we have listened to feedback from our guests, and we are happy to address some of the biggest questions about our managed parking program. 

Why is SEASIDE® doing this?

We aim to handle parking similarly to cities like New Orleans, Atlanta, and others. Before managed parking, cars could sit in one spot all day. With managed parking, we’re seeing at least two cars in that same spot. This translates to more parking for our guests and more customers for our merchants.

Why is SEASIDE® charging for parking?

Almost a decade ago, we noticed a parking challenge emerging along 30A. We embarked on a journey to find solutions, bringing in consultants, attending trainings, and developing our own systems. We engaged in numerous conversations with guests, merchants, and community members. The decision to manage our parking resulted from countless challenging discussions, collaborative efforts, and innovative proposals but our goal has always been clear: ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to experience the magic of SEASIDE®.

What do you do with all of the money?

During the season, SEASIDE® and its merchants have hundreds of employees who park off-site and take the complimentary shuttle to town, which is also open to guests and local use. The proceeds from paid parking cover the shuttle’s cost, as well as other associated expenses to our parking initiative.

How hard is it to pay for the parking?

It’s easy – first-time parking guests just scan the QR code, download the app, enter some basic information, and they’re all set to choose their parking time. After that, parking and using your existing account to pay for your spot is just a matter. We’re also working on an even more efficient “Text-To-Pay” option.

Charming Homes on 22 Pensacola Street, Seaside, Florida

PENDING – 22 Pensacola Street

Combining laid-back living with the best Gulf views, this Seaside, Florida, cottage has the rare luxury of off-street parking on the rear private driveway. Sitting behind a white picket fence on a generous lot, this attractive home has a beautiful carriage house as well as a new roof and newly painted siding. Step inside and admire the light interior decor, cozy fireplace, and lofty ceiling adding a sense of airy spaciousness to the open living room. Wood flooring continues into the dining area and kitchen, which is fully equipped for preparing family meals. Two bedrooms and a shared bath are also on this level. Head upstairs to find two additional bedrooms, two baths (one with a whirlpool tub), and a second living area, allowing families to spread out and enjoy their own space. Sparkling gulf views from the open-air deck make this the perfect space for gathering for sunset drinks with family and friends. The outdoor space is equally conducive to alfresco dining and relaxing in the rear yard. The separate carriage house provides beautiful accommodation for independent family members with a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, living and dining space. Just steps from beach access, the home also has access to a community pool, tennis, and a shady gazebo. Being in Seaside is a real bonus for shopping, dining, and live entertainment in this popular social hub. Ideal as a family vacation home, this well-located cottage has potential rental earnings of $80,000.

Listed by:

Jabbour Luxury Group | Scenic Sotheby’s International Realty

21 Savannah Street - Seaside, Florida

21 Savannah Street

Sophisticated beach elegance at its finest. Located only two lots in from 30A, just a minute stroll to the beach. This updated southern charmer has been featured in House & Garden and Veranda magazine. Life revolves around the outdoor spaces of this beach cottage. The wrap-around screened porch is perfect for outdoor living. Step through the beautiful mahogany front door into the foyer with floor-to-ceiling bookcase. French doors with transom windows flood the living and dining areas with natural light. The home is designed for easy living; comfortable slip covered sofas and gas fireplace for chilly nights as the season starts to cool. A beautiful chandelier hangs from the 14′ ceilings with crown molding. The 12′ dining table seats 10 with slip covered chairs and bench seats. French doors off the kitchen open onto the screened porch. Amenities of the kitchen include a table and chairs for your morning coffee, pantry, Wolfe gas stove, Subzero refrigerator, Bosch dishwasher, granite countertop with a deep stainless-steel sink. Down the hallway are two guest bedrooms and two baths. The primary suite is located on the second level and features an office/sitting area with his and her closets. The primary bath has a double vanity, soaking tub, and separate shower. Head up to the enclosed tower for gulf and sunset views. Entertain your family and friends on the back porch with an outdoor fireplace and summer kitchen. The guest house interiors are a crisp white with a natural finished wood spiral stair. Paved onsite parking for two cars and a golf cart.

Listed by:

Jacqueline J Barker | Seaside Community Realty Inc

Front of 36 E Ruskin Street house

36 E Ruskin Street

Completed in 2021, the main house is perfectly located just four lots in from 30A. The front porch spans the width of the home and expands the living area to converse with neighbors passing by or play your favorite card game. Once inside, an open floor plan is revealed with ten-foot ceilings and crisp white painted wood walls. The custom-built upholstered banquette with storage beneath runs the full length of the dining area. The stylish wood dining table with wicker chairs complements the dining area. The kitchen is the family chef’s dream, starting with a 10′ quartzite countertop island that seats four comfortably. Custom-made cabinets offer plenty of storage. Commercial line Subzero refrigerator, Wolf 4 burner gas stove with griddle, white farm style sink, LG dishwasher, coffee bar/ appliance cabinet, and white subway tile backsplash complete the kitchen. A sand room with sink and storage is located by the side entrance of the home and just beyond is a half bath. The spacious living area includes 2 over-stuffed white slip-covered sofas and chairs. A guest bedroom is currently open to the living area, the addition of sliding doors would create privacy for the 4th bedroom. A full bath is also on the first level. 10′ ceilings continue on the second level. Den with twin sofas for extra sleeping separates the master suite from the guest suites. The black iron king bed with luxurious bed linens creates a cozy retreat. Off the master is a private porch. The master bath features double sinks, a beautiful tile shower, and a walk-in closet. Two guest bedrooms, each with private baths and walk-in closets are also on this level. From the den, halfway up to the tower is a half bath and refrigerator. Continue ascending the stairs to the enclosed tower that extends above the surrounding rooftops, the perfect office, if needed. Step out onto a balcony with panoramic views of the emerald-green waters of the Gulf of Mexico and extraordinary sunsets. The main house includes a whole-house sprinkler system. Rounding out this masterpiece is the separate one-bedroom, one-bath guest quarter. Previously built before the main house and has been updated. Features include a comfy living area, kitchen, private balcony, and washer and dryer. Paved driveway with onsite parking. Excellent location to Seaside town center and amenities.

Listed by:

Jacqueline J Barker | Seaside Community Realty Inc

Jobs

Seaside is a unique, dynamic, and one-of-a-kind retail district. Full-time and Seasonal positions are open in our unique and friendly beach town! We employ smiling faces, hospitality attitudes, and fun-loving team members who enjoy serving our guests!


Parking Ambassador – Full-Time Seasonal

Seaside Community Development Corporation is looking for a Paid Parking Ambassador who is customer service-oriented with strong communication and problem-solving skills.

A background in traffic management is a plus for this position.  A good candidate would possess the ability to work in a fast-paced environment and handle stressful situations calmly.

Starting Pay Rate – $22.79 Per-Hour

5 day work week – 8 hour shift

Full Time Seasonal – March to November

Apply in person, by mail or email to Seaside Community Development Corporation

121 Central Square, 2nd floor (enter next to The Seaside Style)

Attn:  Human Resources, P.O. Box 4730, Santa Rosa Beach, FL  32459

Email jobs@seasidefl.com or Fax 850-231-2323

Drug-Free Workplace/EOE


Grounds Maintenance

Starting Pay Rate – $22.79 Per-Hour

Performance Bonus at end of the year.

Complete minor landscaping task assignments of weeding, trimming, applying pine straw, planting, raking, watering and shoveling sand.  Perform daily trash pickup and landscaping debris disposal.  Must have a neat appearance, energetic, diligent and hardworking with a clean driving record and ability to lift up to 50 pounds.

Excellent benefits, including health, dental, Vision, Short Term Disability, Life Insurance, 401k and 24 paid days off in first year.

Apply in person, by mail or email to Seaside Community Development Corporation

121 Central Square, 2nd floor (enter next to Seaside Style Store)

Attn:  Human Resources, P.O. Box 4730, Santa Rosa Beach, FL  32459

Email jobs@seasidefl.com

Phone 850-231-2323

Fax 850-231-2323

Drug-Free Workplace/EOE


Public Area Housekeeper

Reports to the Maintenance & Project Manager, Seaside Community Development Corp. (SCDC).

The position is responsible for maintaining the cleanliness and ensuring the proper stock of soft goods in the public restrooms,

housekeeping duties and cleaning of office spaces for SCDC and shared entryways into buildings.

Starting Pay Rate – $22.79 Per-Hour

5 day work week – 8 hour shift

Performance Bonus at end of the year.

Excellent benefits, including health, dental, vision, short term disability, life insurance, 401k and 24 paid days off in first year.

Apply in person, by mail or email to Seaside Community Development Corporation

121 Central Square, 2nd floor (enter next to The Seaside Style)

Attn:  Human Resources, P.O. Box 4730, Santa Rosa Beach, FL  32459

Email jobs@seasidefl.com or Fax 850-231-2323

Drug-Free Workplace/EOE


Maintenance Technician (Full Time)

Will utilize their skills and knowledge of building maintenance principals and methods. Responsibilities include changing light fixtures, filter changes, maintaining the grounds (including trash pick-up) and common areas. Additional responsibilities may include lock repairs, install/repair window coverings, caulking, appliance repairs, electrical power usage, light plumbing, carpentry, drywall, painting and HVAC. The Maintenance Technician will have basic skills in using tools such as electric drills & saws, volt and power drain cleaner (snake), ladders, etc.

Requirements:

  • Previous maintenance experience in residential, hotel, or school
  • Passing drivers check, background check and drug screen is required
  • Appliance Service experience a plus
  • HVAC experience a plus

Excellent benefits, including health, dental, vision, 401(k) and 24 paid days off in first year.

Apply in person, by mail or email to Seaside Community Development Corporation

121 Central Square, 2nd floor (enter next to Seaside Style Store)

Attn:  Human Resources, P.O. Box 4730, Santa Rosa Beach, FL  32459

Email jobs@seasidefl.com

Phone 850-231-2323

Fax 850-231-2323

Drug-Free Workplace/EOE


Swim & Tennis Pool & Fitness Center Attendant (Full Time)

Monitoring pool and fitness center guest passes, keeping the pool and fitness center areas clean.

Good communication and organizational skills a must.

Starting Pay Rate – $22.79 Per-Hour

5 day work week – 8 hour shift

Performance Bonus at end of the year.

Excellent benefits, including health, dental, vision, short term disability, life insurance, 401k and 24 paid days off in first year.

Apply in person, by mail or email to Seaside Community Development Corporation

121 Central Square, 2nd floor (enter next to The Seaside Style)

Attn:  Human Resources, P.O. Box 4730, Santa Rosa Beach, FL  32459

Email jobs@seasidefl.com or Fax 850-231-6110

Drug-Free Workplace/EOE


Swim & Tennis Manager

Join our dynamic team as a Swim and Tennis Manager at Seaside Community Development Corporation. We are seeking a passionate individual with a strong background in swim and tennis facility management to lead our vibrant community in enjoying a premier resort experience.  Preferred candidates will have a background in working for a country club, cruise line or airline with a focus on hospitality.  If you are a proactive and customer-focused individual with a passion for contributing to a positive resort experience, we invite you to apply for the position of Swim and Tennis Manager.  Join us in making an impact on creating lifelong memories for our guests.

Excellent benefits, including health, dental, vision, short term disability, life insurance, 401k and 24 paid days off in first year.

Performance Bonus at end of the year.

Interested candidates should submit a resume and cover letter detailing their relevant experience to jobs@seasidefl.com.

Please include “Swim & Tennis Manager” in the subject line.

Drug-Free Workplace/EOE


Cottage Host / Guest Service Agent

The primary duties of the Cottage Host are to assist guests with checking into their cottage, provide guests with Seaside and local information, and to accommodate guests during their stay in an attentive, courteous, and friendly manner. Must have knowledge, understanding, and adherence to Company Core Values and Mission Statement.  Perform duties as outlined in training. Must have a courteous and pleasant manner and use appropriate phrases and greetings when interacting with guests.  Offer assistance to individual needs and requests of all guests.  Ensure guests’ needs are responded to in a timely and efficient manner.  Maintain guest confidentiality at all times.
Qualified candidate should possess the following:
  • An attentive and friendly manner
  • Experience in the hospitality industry
  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Ability to lift 40lbs.
  • Ability to convey information clearly.
  • Must maintain objectivity and composure under pressure
  • Must be able to ride a bicycle

Contact Rodney at Rodney@homeownerscollection.com.


Team Dawson Hospitality

If working in Seaside sounds exciting to you, the Dawson Group is actively hiring and looking for energetic and friendly candidates. We are looking to hire part-time and full-time employees in all positions, such as cashiers, cooks, prep, food runners, and bussers. Download our application here and bring it to any of our restaurants for an in-person interview Monday – Thursday, 9AM-11 AM, or email to dawson@dawsongroupseasidefl.com.

Please note, the Dawson Group is under new ownership. Experience is not necessary, you will be paid for training, all hourly staff receives tips and full-time employees are offered paid vacation, health, dental & vision insurance as well as 401K. Follow us on IG to check out our food and team!

@pickles_seasidefl @shrimpshackseasidefl @wildbillsbeachdogs @dawsonyogurtseasidefl @itsheavenlyseasidefl


Sales Associate (The Art of Simple)

Seeking a sales associate to work in a fun, happy shop in a creative environment. Plus you will get lots of love from Junebug, the shop doggie! Part and Full Time Positions available. All applicants must be over the age of 18.

$15/hr plus evening commissions.

Please email resumes to theartofsimple@icloud.com


Sales Assosciate (Town Square Shoes)

Town Square Shoes is looking to add hardworking, friendly individuals to their team! Seeking full time employees who are available on Saturdays and Sundays.

Please email resumes to townsquareshoes@gmail.com or apply in person!

The Seaside School Foundation Announces Registration for the 22nd Annual Race Weekend

The Seaside School Foundation Announces Registration for the 22nd Annual Race Weekend

The Seaside School Half Marathon & 5K, presented by SEASIDE®, is back, launching its 22nd year of racing. Registration, presented by Visit South Walton, is now open for Race Weekend from February 16th through 18th, 2024, further establishing this event as a signature running event and paramount fundraiser in Northwest Florida. Every year, athletes from around the world converge in Seaside, Florida, assisting in funding The Seaside School, Inc., a pioneering and enduring public charter school in Walton County, Florida.

“We’ve witnessed tremendous growth and transformation over the years, not just in numbers, but in the quality of the educational experience we provide,” commented Teresa Horton, Executive Director of the Seaside School Foundation. “Each year, Race Weekend is a true testament to the collective passion and commitment of our community. 2024 promises an exhilarating experience for everyone!”

This year’s race will embrace a dynamic superhero theme. Participants and spectators alike are encouraged to immerse themselves in the spirit of the event, donning attire inspired by their favorite superheroes, and celebrating the strength and resilience that defines the Seaside community. There will also be first time exclusive VIP experiences for racers and spectators.

“Each registration for the Race Weekend directly fuels our mission based programming at The Seaside School, Inc. Whether it is enhancing educational experiences for our students through new technology, exploratory programming or gaining access to higher levels of our collegiate curriculum, every race participant plays a pivotal role in our students’ success,” said Dr. Tom Miller, the new Executive Director of The Seaside School, Inc. “Their financial support resonates throughout every classroom, enriching their lives and inspiring the next generation of leaders to live a life of personal growth and prosperity.”

The weekend experience commences with the coastal cuisine extravaganza, Taste of the Race, on Friday, February 16, 2024, promising culinary delights, celebrating local flavors, and culinary maestros. Saturday will be bustling with activity at the Race Expo, where participants can gather their race packets and bask in the pre-race excitement at the Seaside Lyceum. The main event is set for Sunday, February 18th with the out-and-back half marathon starting at 7:00 AM and the 5K at 7:30 AM, both showcasing the stunning views along the iconic Scenic Highway 30A, starting and concluding in Seaside..

“Seaside’s deep-rooted history with the Seaside School Half Marathon & 5K, now spanning 22 years, embodies our shared ethos of community, vitality, and a commitment to excellence,” said Micah Davis, President of Seaside Community Development Council (SCDC). “As Seaside continues to flourish, it’s rewarding to see parallel growth and achievement in The Seaside School, Inc., honoring the vision of my parents and our town founders Robert and Daryl Davis.”

Registration this year comes with delightful surprises, notably swag from The Seaside Style, this year’s swag sponsor. This gesture not only adds a touch of local flair but also emphasizes the community’s integral role in the race.

“It’s genuinely a mammoth effort, requiring the dedication of over 400 volunteers including students, teachers and parents from Seaside Neighborhood School and Seacoast Collegiate High School, to bring this weekend to life,” added Kim Mixson, Principal of the Seaside Neighborhood School at The Seaside School, Inc. “We’re immensely grateful for the community’s unwavering support.”

REGISTRATION DETAILS
Registration for the 5K is $95, and the half marathon is $130 and 100% of the proceeds benefit the Seaside School Foundation. Exclusive VIP experiences for both racers and spectators are also available for $125 with dedicated parking or $95 without parking. Kids can also take part in the VIP experience for just $25 [limited to two kids per adult]. Weekend parking passes will also be available for purchase. Military personnel, first responders, and teachers are eligible for a $20 discount upon presentation of valid identification.

TASTE OF THE RACE
The 22nd annual charity Race Weekend will kick-off on Friday, February 16th with an evening under the stars at the official race pre-party, Taste of the Race. Party-goers can attend this delicious Seaside party that features local chefs and restaurateurs competing for the top culinary awards including the coveted Chef’s Choice Award, last year won by Wild Bill’s Beach Dogs operated by the Dawson Group, and the People’s Choice Award, won by The Red Bar.

PACKET PICK-UP

On Saturday, February 17th, runners are invited to pick-up their race packets at the Seaside Neighborhood School and enjoy the Expo taking place in the Seaside Lyceum.

RACE START TIMES
The race weekend comes to a pinnacle with the half marathon (13.1 miles) starting at 7:00 AM and the 5K (3.1 miles) at 7:30 AM, on Sunday, February 18th, 2024. Both races – the half marathon and 5K – start in the town of Seaside, Florida with an out-and-back run along the coastal dune lakes of Scenic Highway 30A.

For more information and to register, visit runseasidefl.com.

Palms in Seaside

Catering to Cars Creates Complicated Community Conundrums

There appears to be a sort of seesaw effect between creating environments that cater to cars and those that are pleasing to people.

As you give on one side, you take on the other. Take the road outside your house for instance. If your main priority was traffic flow, you might choose to widen the road, add lanes, and remove trees on the shoulder that might imperil drivers veering off course. However, in doing so you would make the traffic noise deafening, the sidewalk less shady, and the situation more dangerous for any person daring to cross the street.

Similarly, if you want to make it ultra-convenient for drivers to stop right in front of their desired destination, you might surround each individual destination with its own parking lot. But now you’ve created a problem where each building is spaced out from its neighbors to the degree that it’s no longer convenient to walk between them.

On the other side, take 30A where it meets downtown Seaside. There is parallel parking on either side of the road, which always slows down traffic because of the risk of a door opening or a car pulling out. There also are numerous crosswalks, and many people who create their own.

This situation puts every driver on high alert, because they don’t know when a person or bicyclist will appear in front of them. The environment makes navigating Seaside stressful and slow for the drivers, but comfortable and secure for those outside of a vehicle. The reduced speed of the vehicles not only creates less noise disturbance, but also contributes to a feeling of safety.

The streets in Seaside are intentionally narrow to slow down car traffic as it winds its way through the town. This is less convenient for the driver, but much better for the human or bicyclist.

New Urbanism is a return to a human-centric way of organizing environments that prioritizes people, not cars. However, the movement has not yet totally succeeded in shifting society away from suburban sprawl.

One of its greatest challenges is that many people can’t remember or even imagine a way of living that doesn’t revolve around driving a car every single day. All of us have grown up in a world transformed by automobiles. Unless you have seen the alternative, however, that can be a difficult fact to grasp. You might come to believe that because things are a certain way they should be that way.

That’s where our town comes in. We have an opportunity in Seaside to both give folks a reprieve from the car centric environs they are forced to spend the majority of their time in, and to educate them about the humane way of building towns and cities. Hopefully, we can convince them that walkable places aren’t just for vacationing. You can move to one or create one yourself. Eventually, we will reach a tipping point in which more people embrace this idea than don’t, and we will begin to see far more places that cater to people, not automobiles.

Micah Davis currently serves as President of Seaside Community Development Corporation in Seaside, Florida. Born and raised in Seaside, Florida, Micah grew up in a New Urbanist community which afforded him the kind of childhood unheard of in today’s age. Micah attended St. John’s College and received a bachelor’s degree in the liberal arts, with a focus on philosophy and on the history of science and mathematics.

Seaside Institute

Seaside Institute Holds 29th Annual Seaside Prize

The weekend of Feb. 24-26, 2023, the Seaside Institute held the 29th Annual Seaside Prize honoring UCLA’s Distinguished Research Professor of Urban Planning, Donald Shoup.

The Seaside Prize is awarded annually to a deserving individual or groups who have made significant contributions through design that have changed the way we live. Prize winners are thought innovators in concepts, quality and character of their industry and considered leaders of contemporary urban development and education, who have made their vision a reality, and ultimately our lives better.

Shoup was celebrated for his life’s work in parking policy as Seaside Founder and Developer Robert Davis presented him with the award. Shoup’s books, “Parking in the City,” and “The High Cost of Free Parking,” along with his ongoing research and ideas, have made an impact globally and inspired and challenged many to rethink parking. Parking is the single largest land use in every city and affects our quality of life more than we realize.

Prize weekend kicked off with a reception at The Court. Light bites were prepared by Black Bear Bread Co. and sponsored by The Seaside Merchants, Odd Pelican Brewery, and Distillery 98. Symposiums were held in the Lyceum, featuring a keynote by Rick Cole, Chief Deputy Controller for the City of Los Angeles, followed by Henry Grabar of slate.com, M. Nolan Gray, Research Director, California YIMBY, Stefanos Polyzoides, Architect and Partner at Moule Polyzoides, Norman Garrick, Professor Emeritus, Transportation and Urban Planning at UCONN, and William Fulton, AICP, William Fulton Group. Fulton is also a former student of Shoup.

A memorable awards ceremony at The Chapel at Seaside was followed by dinner at Bud & Alley’s Waterfront Restaurant. The weekend closed with town tours in Seaside, Rosemary Beach and Alys Beach led by founding architect Andrés Duany, Partner at DPZ Co-Design. Each speaker brought Shoup’s work full-circle.

Shoup has an expansive following known simply as “Shoupistas.” If you did not come to Seaside Prize weekend as a Shoupista, you certainly left as one. Find more about Donald Shoup’s work at shoupdogg.com and more about the Seaside Institute at seasideinstitute.org.

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