- Associated Press - Sunday, April 29, 2018

GULF SHORES, Ala. (AP) - The city of Gulf Shores has completed another step in a facelift of its main public beach in time for summer.

Leaders cut the ribbon last week on a $15 million renovation that includes a new boardwalk, green areas with a playground, shady spots and improved landscaping.

The area was mainly a parking lot in the past, but Alabama Tourism Director Lee Sentell says it’s now more of a pedestrian-friendly destination on its own.

The new addition is the second of three planned stages of work at one of Alabama’s most-visited spots.

The first phase included renovated restrooms and more parking. The final stage is set to start in the fall and will include an extension of the boardwalk area further to the west, plus more structures for shade.

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