|City/Town: • Northern Florida|
|Location Class: • Infrastructure|
|Built: • 1945 | Abandoned: • 2016|
|Status: • Abandoned|
|Photojournalist: • David Bulit|
State Road A1A is a state road that runs along the Atlantic Ocean, from the southern tip of the state in Key West to Fernandina Beach on Amelia Island. The road was first designated as State Road 140 but was designated State Road 1 in the 1945 renumbering. The number reflected its location as the nation’s easternmost major north-south road. Due to confusion with the parallel U.S. Highway 1, the State Road Board agreed to renumber the road again in November 1946 to A1A, or Atlantic 1 Alternate.
The George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier on Amelia Island was once part of A1A, established after Florida state representative George Crady, a strong supporter of the Florida State Park system, convinced the Florida Legislature to retain the old bridge for recreation rather than destroy it after the new A1A bridge next to it was completed in 1999. Responsibility for maintaining the George Crady Fishing Pier State Park passed from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) in 2003.
In October 2016, Hurricane Matthew formed in the Atlantic and making landfall in the northern Bahamas, causing catastrophic damage to the country of Haiti and widespread devastation in the southeastern United States. A portion of what is known as the Amelia Island Trail which runs through George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park was damaged due to the storm. A special trust fund consisting of annual contributions from Duval and Nassau Counties was being used to maintain the bridge but FDEP estimated the repair costs to exceed what money is in the trust fund and indicated they had no state funds to contribute. The George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier was since reopened but a portion of it remains gated and closed off to the public.