Big Pine Key is an island in the lower Florida Keys located off the coast of Marathon, Florida. It is part of Monroe County and is connected to the mainland by US 1 (also known as the Overseas Highway). Big Pine Key is about 15 miles long and has a total area of about 4.5 square miles. The terrain of Big Pine Key is mostly low-lying and flat, with an elevation ranging from sea level to 10 feet above sea level. The highest point on Big Pine Key is at the intersection of US 1 and Watson Boulevard, which stands at 10 feet above sea level. The island features several small lakes, ponds, and wetlands, as well as mangrove forests along its eastern shoreline. The shallow waters around Big Pine Key are home to a variety of marine life such as manatees, dolphins, and sea turtles. Offshore coral reefs provide excellent snorkeling opportunities for visitors looking to explore the underwater world. According to topschoolsintheusa, there are several public parks located on the island including National Key Deer Refuge which offers hiking trails through pine flatwoods and tropical hardwood hammocks that are home to many native species of plants and animals unique to this region.
History of Big Pine Key, Florida
Big Pine Key is believed to have been inhabited by Native Americans for thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans in the 1500s. The first recorded settlers on Big Pine Key were Bahamian shipwreck survivors who arrived in the 1820s, and the island was then called “Bahama Village” by locals. In 1856, William Adderly purchased Big Pine Key and named it “Big Pine” after a nearby pine tree. After his death, his heirs sold the island to John Watson in 1882, who developed it into a commercial fishing village. In 1908, the Florida Keys were connected to the mainland by railroad and Big Pine Key became an important stop along this line. During World War II, Big Pine Key was used as a training ground for U.S. Navy personnel and was also home to several military bases and installations during this time. After World War II, Big Pine Key experienced rapid growth as it became popular with tourists looking to escape from mainland life and enjoy its natural beauty. Today, Big Pine Key is home to around 5,000 permanent residents and remains a popular tourist destination due its unique geography and history.
Economy of Big Pine Key, Florida
Big Pine Key is an important economic center for both Monroe County and the Florida Keys. It is home to a variety of businesses and industries, including retail, tourism, commercial fishing, and construction. Tourism is the main driver of the economy in Big Pine Key as it attracts visitors from all over the world looking to enjoy its natural beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities. The island is home to several hotels and resorts offering accommodations for tourists, as well as restaurants, bars, and other attractions. The island also has a thriving commercial fishing industry which provides fresh seafood to local restaurants and markets. Additionally, there are several marinas located on Big Pine Key that provide docking facilities for recreational boaters.
The construction industry has also been an important part of the economy in Big Pine Key for many years. The island has experienced a steady growth in population over the past decade which has resulted in an increasing demand for new housing developments. Construction companies based on Big Pine Key are responsible for building new homes, condos, and other structures to meet this demand.
Overall, Big Pine Key’s economy is diverse and robust offering employment opportunities in many different industries all year round. This economic stability has enabled the island to remain a popular destination for both locals and tourists alike looking to take advantage of its unique natural beauty and recreational offerings.
Politics in Big Pine Key, Florida
Big Pine Key is located in Monroe County, Florida and is governed by the county’s Board of County Commissioners. The Board consists of five members, each elected to serve a four-year term. The Board is responsible for setting policies and laws that govern Big Pine Key and the surrounding area. In addition to the Board of County Commissioners, Big Pine Key also has a Mayor who is elected by the citizens of Big Pine Key to serve a two-year term.
In addition to local politics, Big Pine Key also has representatives in both the Florida Senate and House of Representatives. These representatives are responsible for passing laws that affect all Floridians and help shape the state’s economic and political future.
Big Pine Key’s citizens are generally politically active and take part in local elections as well as national elections. During election season, there are often debates held on the island between candidates running for office so that residents can learn more about their views on important issues such as taxes, education, healthcare, and environmental protection.
Overall, Big Pine Key’s politics are reflective of its diverse population with different political ideologies being represented in local government. This ensures that all voices are heard when it comes to making important decisions about how to best serve the community’s needs going forward.