Newly named Gulf State Park Road is back open to all traffic
Newly renamed State Park Road (formerly County Road 135) is back open to all traffic, following the completion of several upgrades to make the road safer for passenger vehicles, recreational vehicles, walkers and bikers.
This 2-mile road runs from Gulf State Park Headquarters to The Lodge at Gulf State Park, a Hilton Hotel. It begins at the intersection of Alabama’s Coastal Connection/E. Fort Morgan Road and runs through the park to East Beach Boulevard/Alabama Highway 182.
Upgrades to the road included a shift of the center line, the installation of a highway rated railing system, and replacement of the bridge decking. New barriers were installed along Lakeview Trail to provide better protection to bikers and walkers.
Besides the renaming of State Road 135 to State Park Road, Park Road 2 will now be known as Refuge Road. Previously unnamed roads to the Eagle Cottages and the Gulf State Park cabins will now be known as Bald Eagle Lane and Acorn Lane, respectively.
“The new railing system still looks rustic but does a great job at separating the bike path from vehicular traffic. The trail is more defined, and in some areas, it travels deeper into the forest giving the guests a more nature-based experience,” said Gulf State Park Naturalist Kelly Reetz.
While the road was closed, Gulf State Park maintenance staff were able to complete a prescribed burn with the aid of the Alabama Forestry Commission to reduce the amount of fuel – shrubs, grasses, pine straw – throughout the marsh and around the bald eagles’ nest. Hikers and bicyclists use the trail along State Park Road, they will have a better opportunity to see wildlife, especially the eagles that are nesting in that area.
Improvements at the Park’s Woodside Restaurant include a newly added outdoor porch with fire pits and games such as table tennis, cornhole and giant Jenga.
The Alabama State Parks is a division of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. The division maintains 21 parks encompassing approximately 48,000 acres of land and water. These parks rely on visitor fees and the support of other partners like local communities to fund the majority of their operations. Download the State Parks app at pocketranger.com. For more information about Alabama State Parks, go online to www.alapark.com. Partners Pay the Way.