Is Fernandina Beach Becoming More Historic?

Is Fernandina Beach Becoming Its Own Little St. Augustine or Savannah, GA?

Visitors to the southeastern United States have likely heard of a number of inspiring and classic historic towns. Two of the most popular are St. Augustine, FL and Savannah, GA.

Though both of these waterside towns have recently developed areas, the real tourist attractions and the real magic of the city rests in their cobblestone streets and historical aesthetics. As contemporary as these cities claim to be, they are authentically old. This makes them charming and whimsical.

St. Augustine is the country’s oldest city. Savannah, GA is not far behind. Both of these cities captivate with their southern ambiance, their dazzling nostalgic attractions, old architecture, and street design. If you doubt these claims, it’s worth knowing you can venture over the cobblestone by horse. It doesn’t get much more historic than that.

horse and carriage in street

Historic Sensibilities in Fernandina Beach

Both St. Augustine and Savannah embrace their historic roots, and it pours throughout the city. Fernandina Beach is not far behind. Over the last few years, Fernandina Beach has developed into a quintessential Old Florida town.

The city has cultivated a distinct historic design, from preserved buildings to the environment and culture. Yet, is it becoming as historically defining as the aforementioned masters of classic architecture and rustic living?

Government Support

The desire to keep a historic design is one thing, but it needs support. Thankfully, Fernandina Beach government leadership is helping to retain that classic vintage village living that makes St. Augustine and Savannah so endearing.

One way they are accomplishing this is through sound. Both Savannah and St. Augustine have musical ordinances restricting sound to certain volumes and hours. Both restrictions are quite modest compared to more urban city sprawls. Fernandina Beach leadership hopes to also retain modesty in sound and live music amplification. A meeting from 2017 revisited language in an active city noise ordinance (1).

The meeting helped settle ambiguous wording to live music amplification in the Fernandina Beach Historic District, helping define “plainly audible” from 25 feet outside the premises. The Fernandina Observer report stated that City Commissioner Roy Smith was considering moving forward to ban all amplified music in the city, instead of restricting it to acoustics only (1). Though this was tabled for the time being, the fact that it is at all possible is a serious testament to the city’s willingness to retain a historic ambiance.

Property Development

The above noise ordinance covers a direct desire to limit needless noise. Many against it may be creating a nightlife culture that may not fit with the historic aesthetics.

The city leadership is seeking to promote a culture of family-friendly activities and attractions surrounding the Fernandina Beach properties. The historic Centre St is only a block away from many homes. It is just not businesses managing city regulation. These homes are also subject to historic standards.

For example, the homes in Fernandina Beach need to accommodate fence standards. Fences can’t be taller than four feet and with pickets set less than three inches apart, as covered in a city assessment report (2).

The above may seem limiting. For many, it helps protect that sense of historic wonder and magic. Properties can be seen from the road, without being blocked by excessively tall or restrictive fencing, metal gates, or needless privatization.

Furthermore, decks should be located in the rear and elevated out of public view because they are not considered historic features.

These regulations sustain the uniqueness that makes historic towns, such as Savannah and St. Augustine, so remarkably enthralling.

Comprehensive Plans for the Future

The city has recently unveiled a newly updated Comprehensive City Plan. The plan covers land development restrictions, historic preservation, open space projects, housing, and more. It offers direct insight into the future of the city and the expectations for Amelia island real estate (3).

We know this city. We have our pulse on its development and the availability of the Amelia Island homes for sale. Contact us at (800)-741-4011 to learn more. You can find a city growing and evolving while retaining its historical sense of self.