On February 23 the 8.2 million dollar, 4.5 acre, Andy Romano Beachfront Park opened in Ormond Beach to much acclaim. It is the first beachfront park in the City. The architectural style for the park structures is patterned after our historic Ormond Fire House, constructed by the WPA in 1937.
Following input from the public the local engineering firm Zev Cohen & Associates, Inc. designed the park. Seemingly no Fire House architectural elements were missed, and the resemblance to the Fire House is striking. Included elements, among others, are coquina, towers, arches, keystones, and vents. Ormond Beach based Saboungi Construction served as the contractor and representatives were spotted at the Fire House early one morning studying the original they were hired to mimic.
Mr. Romano, for whom the park is named, was an early lifeguard for Ormond Beach, whose ultimate superior was the police chief, stationed at the Fire House. Accordingly, he is well familiar with the Fire House. He was invited for a visit, and came accompanied by his daughter, Heidi Carhide, an architect who was involved in the design of the park. Mr. Romano conveyed many recollections of the Fire House and Ormond Beach, then known as Ormond, when he was a youth. He is now 90 years old and came to the area in the 30's.
The City has contemplated construction of a welcome sign in proximity to the Granada Boulevard interchange with I-95 which also incorporates the Fire House architectural style. A prior version of a welcome sign, such as situated on the west side of U.S. 1 just north of the Tomoka River, contains some Fire House architectural elements. We may be a bit biased but we don't think there could be a better architectural style used for construction in Ormond Beach.