Treasure Coast in Florida

Friday, 4 January 2019 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Miami / South Florida
Reading Time:  6 minutes

St. Lucie River and Stuart from Sewall's Point © DannyCush

St. Lucie River and Stuart from Sewall’s Point © DannyCush

The Treasure Coast is a region of Florida. It is located on the state’s Atlantic coast, comprising Indian River, St. Lucie, and Martin, and in some definitions, Palm Beach counties. The region, whose name refers to the Spanish Treasure Fleet lost in a 1715 hurricane, evidently emerged from residents’ desire to distinguish themselves from Miami and the Gold Coast region to the south.

All of the Treasure Coast is shielded from the Atlantic Ocean by narrow sandbars and barrier islands that protect the shallow lagoons, rivers, and bays. Immediately inland, pine and palmetto flatlands are abundant. Numerous lakes and rivers run through the Treasure Coast, notably the well known Indian River, a part of the Indian River Lagoon system. At certain seasons of the year, bridges may impede the red drift algae flow, causing a “rotten egg” hydrogen sulfide odor in the area. The Treasure Coast is also bordered by the Atlantic portion of the Intracoastal Waterway, a stretch of closed water from Brownsville, Texas to Boston, Massachusetts.

The area has long been inhabited, but like other of Florida‘s vernacular regions, a popular identity for the area did not emerge until the area saw its initial population boom in the 20th century. It is one of several “coast” regions in Florida, like the Gold Coast and the First Coast. The term was coined by John J. Schumann Jr. and Harry J. Schultz of the Vero Beach Press Journal newspaper shortly after salvagers began recovering Spanish treasure off the coast in 1961. The discovery of treasure from the 1715 Treasure Fleet, lost in a hurricane near the Sebastian Inlet, was of major local importance and brought international attention to the area. Press Journal publisher Shumann and editor Schultz noted that there was no name for their area, which was between the well known Gold Coast (Palm Beach to Miami to the south) and the Space Coast (Brevard County to the north). They started referring to their region as the “Treasure Coast” in the newspaper, and this use spread to the community.

Indian River Lagoon © U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service Marina in Grand Harbor, Vero Beach © Leonard J. DeFrancisci/cc-by-sa-3.0 New Roosevelt Bridge in Stuart © Stephen B Calvert/cc-by-sa-3.0 City hall of Sebastian © Ebyabe7cc-by-sa-3.0 St. Lucie River and Stuart from Sewall's Point © DannyCush Town square of Tradition © Formulanone/cc-by-sa-3.0
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Marina in Grand Harbor, Vero Beach © Leonard J. DeFrancisci/cc-by-sa-3.0
Though some local businesses were using the term as early as 1966, it spread fairly slowly. The Miami Herald‘s 1972 Florida Almanac refers to the area from Miami to Vero Beach as the “Tropical Coast”. A 1982 survey of Florida’s vernacular regions by geographers Ary J. Lamme and Raymond K. Oldakowski did not include the “Treasure Coast”. The survey showed that the entire area from Dade County (now Miami-Dade) north to Martin County was considered the “Gold Coast” at that time. However, a 2007 survey by the same authors found that by then the “Gold Coast” was restricted primarily to Miami-Dade and Broward counties, while the “Treasure Coast” region had emerged describing the area from Palm Beach County northward. Lamme and Oldakowski noted that by that time, “Gold Coast” had acquired some unflattering connotations. They suggest the communities to the north may have seen the need to distinguish themselves from the Gold Coast and Miami to promote their locale as a destination for American tourists and residents, contributing to the current popularity of the Treasure Coast as a vernacular region. The Anthony J. Catanese Center for Urban and Environmental Solutions at Florida Atlantic University notes that the Treasure Coast is becoming increasingly continuous with the rest of South Florida, with much of its current and projected development being tied to growth in the urban Miami metropolitan area.

A great amount of the Treasure Coast’s population is made up of census-designated places (CDPs), with almost all of these in Martin County and Indian River County. Only one city on the Treasure Coast has a population of more than 100,000 inhabitants, which is Port St. Lucie in St. Lucie County. Among the cities, towns and villages are: Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, Sebastian, Stuart, Vero Beach, Fellsmere, Indiantown, Tradition, Indian River Shores, Sewall’s Point and St. Lucie Village. Census-designated places are: Palm City, Vero Beach South, Jensen Beach, Hobe Sound, Lakewood Park, Port Salerno, Gifford, Fort Pierce North, Indian River Estates, River Park, Fort Pierce South, White City, North River Shores and Roseland.

The area does not have airports with scheduled passenger flights. However, such flights are available at Melbourne’s Orlando Melbourne International Airport to the north and West Palm Beach’s Palm Beach International Airport to the south. Fort Pierce Harbor, in Fort Pierce, is a significant port for imports and exports.

Read more on AllThingsTreasureCoast.com, VisitFlorida.com – A Guide to Treasure Coast Beaches, VisitFlorida.com – Exploring the Treasure Coast, Wikivoyage Treasure Coast and Wikipedia Treasure Coast (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.






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