Cocoa Beach Height Vote Meeting

The Cocoa Beach building heights remains a hot and controversial topic here in Cocoa, Beach. In November, voters will decide whether or not the building height limit should increase from 45 to 70 feet.

The Charter Review Committee recently met for a discussion on whether or not to place the 70 foot height limit on the ballot.  According to, Florida Today, “After about two hours of discussion, the Charter Review Committee conceptually approved a proposed ballot question that would set a 70-foot building height limit. The committee may revise the language during its March 14 meeting, and a formal presentation to the Cocoa Beach City Commission is set for May 3.”

After the formal meeting, the Cocoa Beach City Commission will decide if this ballot question should be approved, rejected or modified.

According to Florida Today, The current ballot question reads today:

“Shall the City Charter be amended to:

• Remove the 45-foot height limitation on structures

• Remove related variance provisions

• Revise the existing unanimous vote requirement for comprehensive plan changes that increase permissible building/structure height to require that any comprehensive plan adoption or amendment increasing permissible building/structure height beyond 70 feet above the road’s crown (excluding 8 feet of unoccupied rooftop appurtenances) receive the affirmative vote of all five city commissioners for approval?”

So, what are your overall opinions on the building heights? Should they remain 45 or be pushed to 70? We’d love to hear your thoughts!


Stay tuned for more Cocoa Beach building heights blogs & updates real soon.


Florida Today Article:



55 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Stephen S. Phillips March 2, 2018

    45 Foot is plenty of Height for the Building.

  2. Lisa Gallagher March 2, 2018

    We do not want to approve 70’ height limit. Much to high! I don’t want our Cocoa Beach to look like Indian Harbour Beach! Small town feel would be gone.

  3. Jocie taylor March 2, 2018

    snOk, so you raise the height limit, that means more people, more cars, more congestion, more accidents. Not a good idea all. How about thinking about the current residents welfare. And don’t tell me it will lower the tax base.

  4. Kelley Hewitt March 2, 2018

    Not only is 70 feet too high aesthetically, but where is the added infastructure going to come from? A1A is already too busy. What about water use and sewer impacts of the added residents? REJECT this effort to squeeze more $$ out of each square of dirt!
    I will pay more in property taxes if needed to avoid turning Cocoa Beach into Daytona or any other high rise beach town. Our taxes are really low anyway, if you compare them to many other states’ property taxes.

  5. Wendy McNally March 2, 2018

    Absolutely Not!

  6. Reynold Palmer March 2, 2018

    Only if tlhe Waste Water treatment plant can handle the extra density!

  7. DOMINIC SCAFETTA March 2, 2018

    You guys are right on. Apparently there was already a vote to reject this hair brained idea, but the MONEY PLAYERS refuse to serve the will of the people.

    We need to go out and vote yet again to reject this. Don’t be surprised if it doesn’t end there. Follow the $$$, and you will see who is behind this.

    It needs to stop.

  8. Dr. Jeannie Langan Heins March 2, 2018

    City Commission cannot be trusted with new height limits, so leave all current limits in place.

  9. Candy Boudreau March 2, 2018

    Enough is enough! We voted this down three times already. Did the developers and the City Commissioners not get the message? We, the citizens of Cocoa Beach, have NOT changed our minds!!

  10. Janice baker March 2, 2018

    maybe 5 or 10 feet to allow for new/renovated buildings with higher ceilings and to deal with changes in elevation as a result of FEMA’s work, but NO WAY for 70 ft and NO WAY for giving city officials more power or discretion to allow variances

  11. James Russo March 2, 2018

    Nope. For all the reasons previously stated and then some.

  12. Jay Honeycutt March 2, 2018


  13. Michael De Simone March 2, 2018

    The residents have said no. Do we really need to visit this again just to appease a few business owners. All I’ve seen is one sided propaganda from the politicians trying to convince residents we need new rules. The same politicians that are supposed to support the will of the people. Vote NO.

    • Sk March 2, 2018

      Yes mike . I am afraid you are right !

  14. Martha Chevlin March 2, 2018

    It is about the almighty dollar. Stop being greedy and leave well enough alone! No increase!!!!

  15. Kent Hoffman March 2, 2018

    The city officials should know better than even to ask, but wait there’s money involved. Just have to vote it down again.

  16. Mube B. Altan March 2, 2018

    The reason we settled in Cocoa Beach is it’s small town atmosphere. Don’t change the building height requirement, keep Cocoa Beach as a unique town it is. 45 ft is plenty of height!

  17. Linda Rivera March 2, 2018

    There has been no new growth in Cocoa Beach with the height limit restrictions. All the growth is going to surrounding communities. I don’t think the change to 70 feet is too high. We have vacant lots that look terrible. The glass building lot needs to be developed. Developers need to make it profitable to build. We’ll turn into a sleepy town soon with very high taxes. We need a new City Hall and Police Dept building. Where will Cocoa Beach get the money? I’d like to see a vibrant Cocoa Beach with no rundown buildings. A 70 Ft height restriction isn’t a high rise at all.

    • Pat Weber March 3, 2018

      I agree with everything Linda Rivera posted especially that 70 feet is not too high. Well said, Ms. Rivera, you’re right on…

  18. A. Avery March 2, 2018

    I’m sorry but this is insane. Not only do people want to stop business and growth but they also do not want anyone else to live in cocoa beach. No one gets to close a city. High rise condos and apartments increase tax base. As do high rise hotels. They increase property values too. It is a win win. Cocoa beach has not been a “small town” since the 1st moon shot. This is the price you pay for living on the beach. Things change, time marches on. Cocoa beach must grow up in order to grow.

    • Linda R March 3, 2018

      I totally agree with most of what you say. However, I don’t want high risers that keep the beach in the shade. We do need to expand our tax base and new buildings would spruce up our city.

  19. Ima Highrise March 2, 2018

    Waaaa to all you no growthers!!!! 75 Feet is way too low. We need 100 plus feet.

  20. Suzanne Rankin March 2, 2018

    No, no and NO! For all of the above very reasons given!

  21. Apollo Corapi March 2, 2018

    I have lived in Cocoa Beach since 1980 and have loved it. To me the change that is being asked to change the height limit of new buildings to 70 feet is a no brainer. The answer is a resounding NO. What is wrong with the way things are. Believe me, the developers will design a new building to make it profitable for them. I have not seen any decrease in building.

  22. Colette T March 2, 2018

    Did we really need a fire station on A1A in the center of town? Millions wasted when they could have sold the land for development and located a station a few blocks to the west. This city is so underdeveloped with dilapidated homes lining A1A west of the oceanfront. Don’t you dare compare Daytona Beach high rises to 70 feet. You have no clue what you are talking about. Seven stories is nothing, and for those of you that want comparisons, the height difference between 45 ft and 70 ft is the depth of your average garage, or a cement mixer behind a pick up truck, or the width of most paved side streets in Brevard County, or two lanes on A1A. Really, now you all think that increase in length is too high? GET REAL!!!! Progress is long over due for this town!!!

    • Douglas Atkins March 2, 2018

      Colette, an increase in length is not an increase in height…

  23. Margie Dixon March 2, 2018

    I moved to Cocoa Beach for the reason of lower buildings I lived in Palm Beach and we had wall to wall of high buildings
    on both side of the street and it was like driving down a tunnel so please do not do it here and spoil the beautiful city

    • Pat Weber March 3, 2018

      Margie, 70 feet is NOT like the high rise buildings that you are talking about in Palm Beach…

      • Linda Rivera March 3, 2018

        I totally agree with most of what you say. However, I don’t want high risers that keep the beach in the shade. We do need to expand our tax base and new buildings would spruce up our city.

  24. Kathryn Kellar March 2, 2018

    I will never forget my shock when I visited Myrtle Beach in the 90s and saw that the beach town I spent my youth in had turned into an ugly cold city with the beach completely in shadow by 3 pm and NO one there. Leave the tall buildings for the inner cities and don’t destroy the beach towns by lining them up with high rises along the dunes. The need for increased revenue should be solved by some creative thinking and good research and not by taking the easy but irreversible path of changing the beach town atmosphere people love to that of a city built of concrete and steel.

  25. Jonathan Williams March 2, 2018

    What ever happened to the density issue?

  26. Elaine Gallagher March 2, 2018

    I am confused. A six story building, with five stories of living space (the first floor lobby level cannot contain living areas), with a ceiling height of 10 feet per floor, would be 60 feet of living space. Add to that one foot of space above each floor for HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and the roof, any you have a total height of 66 feet. Are people saying that a new six story building, with five stories of living units, should be banned in Cocoa Beach?

    Attractive, modern units have at least 10 foot ceilings, in both hotels and residences. Under new FEMA guidelines, five stories of living units require a six story building. A six story building does not look anything like the buildings in Indian Harbor Beach. Perhaps I need to study common core math to understand how a 70 foot building is equivalent to a high rise.

    I love the small town feel of Cocoa Beach and I don’t want Cocoa Beach to look anything like Indian Harbor Beach or Daytona. The fact remains, however, that buildings decline, especially in our coastal environment. Money for infrastructure repairs has to come from somewhere. Run-down structures need to be rebuilt. Putting in place architectural guidelines for re-development, including where the new development can occur, would address many of our concerns. Controlled growth would be preferable to deterioration.

    • Douglas Atkins March 2, 2018

      Elaine, would you happen to be a real estate agent, maybe?

    • Elaine Gallagher March 4, 2018

      I would add that I am in favor of maintaining the 45 foot height limit along the A1A split, to maintain the current character of that area. I am in favor of raising the height limit to 70 feet only north of the A1A split.

    • Gary Arendas March 13, 2018

      I hope everyone reads your post ! I moved here in 1963 .

  27. Douglas Atkins March 2, 2018

    It’s ALWAYS about money, ALWAYS! Additional development would be for the enrichment of the big developers first of all, and then for the municipal cronies that stay awake at night thinking of ways to spend the hopefully expected consequential revenues to then try to support the ever overbearing expenses resulting from overdevelopment of a limited resource! The local home group would be hard pressed to realize any monetary benefit per-se, and most likely feel squeezed in their own community by the perceived intrusion from too many interlopers just visiting for a short time and having little respect for the local customs that have evolved during the past half century and more. Specific areas are already designated for vacation resort and can be maintained as such. Further vertical expansion will not enhance the ambiance of our community and only create more congestion.

  28. Tonya Morgan March 2, 2018

    Not a good idea to increase the height limit. The height limit was put in place so it would have a positive impact on Cocoa Beach, and it has by preventing us from becoming over populated plus it would increase our sewer system activity, and put even more stress on our lagoon which is already on it’s breaking point. It was put in place for a good reason leave it alone.

  29. Dennis Walker March 3, 2018

    When was the current height restrictions put in place?

  30. LM March 3, 2018

    Cocoa beach can barely handle the waste from current population. Fix the waste leaking and treatment problem first so it can handle future amounts of population. Three words follow the money.

  31. JR March 3, 2018

    The buildings are too old and the entire downtown area needs a facelift. “Keeping it the way it is” is a silly argument as nothing stays the same. Buildings continue to age and people continue to move here. Without development, all the aforementioned traffic and municipal issues continue to be a problem and solutions can’t be addressed. Development will bring a facelift to the area and provide residents and tourists a place to enjoy. Personally, I think it is high time to push the height to 70′. No pun intended…

    • Kelley Hewitt March 7, 2018

      full name, please, “ JR” just so we all know who you are and that you’re a resident of cocoa beach

      • JR March 8, 2018

        I’d prefer to stay anonymous, thanks. But, I was born and raised here. Both sets of grandparents moved here in the 40s when 520 was a dead end at the beach. Not that it matters, but very few people can out “local” me. I’m for the height adjustment. It needs to happen

      • JR March 8, 2018

        **edit** sorry, both sets of grandparents moved here in the 1940s. So, when all the old-timers are posting about the 1980s on here, I chuckle. And, to other posters, please refrain from using the pronoun “we” when you really mean ” me or I”. This isn’t the town that “we” want or wanted. This is the town gripped by the will of the few clinging to the way things were…

  32. LR March 3, 2018

    I love this. If you don’t like the answer, rephrase the question. Typical response when real estate $$$ are at stake.
    I am insulted that, once again, we revisit this same issue. For the 4th or 5th time – NO!
    The argument that the existing buildings are old is ridiculous. So tear them down and rebuild. Doesn’t seem to be an issue where private housing is concerned. How many McMansions have sprung up on “old” property? Why should it be a problem for business sites to do the same? In public, a prominent public citizen finds it useful to target one specific current hotel location and refer to it as a “sh*tHole”. Why? MONEY! LOTS OF MONEY! Why can’t the new owners of this said hotel follow the lead of the current remodel of the Wakulla? Seems to be working for them. Why did they buy and expect the situation to change? What was their incentive?
    We have traffic issues, parking issues, waste water problems, beach problems, etc. etc. etc. These problems have only increased and I see no solutions to these issues being factored into the change request.

  33. Colette T March 3, 2018

    Douglas, A.., are you for real??!? It’s a comparison on the ground. But let me simplify it further for you, the difference between 70 ft and 45ft is two Kia Souls on end on top of one another. Does that help ???? LOL. ?

  34. Bill Nutter March 3, 2018

    Who benefits the most from all this anticipated development if the height is raised? Developers and bankers. How many of them are residents of Cocoa Beach? Very little of that money stays in Cocoa Beach’s economy. Let the city learn to live within its budget, the rest of us have to.

    • JR March 5, 2018

      Such a tough and well thought out argument… definitely the property owners won’t benefit from a revitalized Cocoa Beach, definitely not the local business from more tourists and locals choosing to spend their money in Cocoa Beach, definitely not the municipality from added tax dollars, definitely not the local schools from increased property taxes, definitely not locals who own support businesses like painting, cleaning, pressure washing, etc… Yep, just bankers and developers ?

  35. Christopher Hyde March 5, 2018

    Hell no! The only people that benefit from this are developers. We should pay close attention to council members that support this and send them packing on election day.

  36. Frank Klotz March 5, 2018

    Has anyone done a safety study with Cocoa Beach being an island and only one road to handle traffic. The locals have seen in the past when A1A was shut down and the consequences from it. The Harbor Cay condo disaster in the early 1980’s when eleven construction workers were killed and in 2001 during the terrorists attack on America. Both times A1A was shut down for a period of time. The city was thrown into disorder and major disruption of residences and businesses. Today at times of peak traffic, Dominos will not deliver pizza to the Port Canaveral area due to delivery drivers taking an hour getting back to the office.

  37. Ed Anderson March 6, 2018

    I was part of the effort to reduce the height limit from 85 feet serving on the Planning and Zoning Board in the early 2000’s. There was a reason for its success as well as the resounding citizen disapproval of the State trying to widen A1A to 6 lanes. The town we have is the town we wanted. One thing no one is mentioning though is the disruption that the massive citywide demolition and reconstruction would cause. Look at all the two and three story buildings on the beach just north of Minuteman. I do believe there are properties that could be rebuilt higher, but each property should stand on its own for review, analysis, and approval.

  38. J Patts March 6, 2018

    Poll all the commissioners and the ones in favor, vote them the hell out.

  39. Bob October 17, 2018

    The current 45′ height limits in our charter are what have made our city such a great place to live and kept us from becoming another Daytona beach. Don’t think so, take a look at all the city’s with 45′ or less height restrictions in Florida, they are city’s like Fernandina Beach/Amelia Island, Vero Beach, and St. Augustine – ie. the kind of city’s we like to visit – they are quaint, inviting, full of fun stuff to do and nice restaurants, but haven’t overdeveloped to the point it is ridiculous. The 45′ height limit allows developers to develop their property into something that would be a nice addition to our town without going overboard. We already have plenty of taller condo’s that are grandfathered in and don’t need any more. Adding additional taller structures will help nothing and only adds to traffic and congestion problems and increases stress on our fragile Indian River Lagoon system. Vote No on Cocoa Beach Question One.

  40. Bob October 22, 2018

    Check out the recent “” post to get a good summary (and the real facts) of how the special interest groups (i.e. Developers) have spent over $35,000 to push out misleading information to residents in an effort to get Question One approved. If anyone thinks they spent this kind of money to benefit the residents of Cocoa Beach they really need to think a little harder. Vote No on this ballot question to save our city from overdevelopment, protect our Indian river lagoon and aging infrastructure, and prevent additional traffic and congestion. The current charter requirements allow acceptable levels of development and are what has kept the city from becoming another Miami Beach.

Leave your comment