Rockledge, Florida

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Rockledge, Florida
—  City  —
Motto: "Preserving The Past, Planning The Future"[1]
Location in Brevard County and the state of Florida
Coordinates: 28°19′30″N 80°43′58″W / 28.325°N 80.73278°W / 28.325; -80.73278Coordinates: 28°19′30″N 80°43′58″W / 28.325°N 80.73278°W / 28.325; -80.73278
Country United States
State Florida
County Brevard
FoundedAugust 7, 1887
Government
 • TypeCouncil-Manager
 • MayorThomas J. Price
 • City ManagerJames P. “Jim” McKnight
 • Deputy Mayor, ChairmanFrank T. Forrester
 • Vice ChairmanRichard K. "Dick" Blake
Area
 • Total13.4 sq mi (34.8 km2)
 • Land11.9 sq mi (30.9 km2)
 • Water1.5 sq mi (3.8 km2)
Elevation23 ft (7 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total24,926
 • Density1,900/sq mi (720/km2)
Time zoneEastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST)EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes32955-32956
Area code(s)321
FIPS code12-61500[3]
GNIS feature ID0294132[4]
WebsiteCity of Rockledge Florida Website
 
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Rockledge, Florida
—  City  —
Motto: "Preserving The Past, Planning The Future"[1]
Location in Brevard County and the state of Florida
Coordinates: 28°19′30″N 80°43′58″W / 28.325°N 80.73278°W / 28.325; -80.73278Coordinates: 28°19′30″N 80°43′58″W / 28.325°N 80.73278°W / 28.325; -80.73278
Country United States
State Florida
County Brevard
FoundedAugust 7, 1887
Government
 • TypeCouncil-Manager
 • MayorThomas J. Price
 • City ManagerJames P. “Jim” McKnight
 • Deputy Mayor, ChairmanFrank T. Forrester
 • Vice ChairmanRichard K. "Dick" Blake
Area
 • Total13.4 sq mi (34.8 km2)
 • Land11.9 sq mi (30.9 km2)
 • Water1.5 sq mi (3.8 km2)
Elevation23 ft (7 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total24,926
 • Density1,900/sq mi (720/km2)
Time zoneEastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST)EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes32955-32956
Area code(s)321
FIPS code12-61500[3]
GNIS feature ID0294132[4]
WebsiteCity of Rockledge Florida Website

Rockledge pron.: /ˈrɒklɪdʒˌ-ˌlɛdʒ/ is the oldest city in Brevard County, Florida, United States. The population was 24,926 at the 2010 census.[2] It is part of the Palm BayMelbourneTitusville Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Contents

History

A view of early Rockledge, FL and the Indian River
A view of early Rockledge, FL and the Indian River
Modern-day picture of the Magruder-Whaley House
Modern-day picture of the Magruder-Whaley House

The original name of Rockledge was Peru, named after the Peruvian Mining Company. The company set up small houses for the workers in the area.[5]

Rockledge was officially founded on August 7, 1887, making it the oldest incorporated municipality in Brevard County.[6] The name Rockledge, attributed to Gardner S. Hardee, an early settler, comes from the many ledges of coquina rock that line the Indian River[citation needed].[7] Other sources refer to a man named Cephas Bailey Magruder, who built his home after settling in the area in 1876 near the Indian River. Magruder called his home "the rockledge home" and the name was eventually attributed to the whole town.[8][9] It was originally referred to as Rock Ledge; the two-word name persisted through the 19th century.[10] Early industry in the area was based on the citrus trade and accommodation for tourists traveling to South Florida via the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway of the Indian River.[citation needed]

Towards the early part of the 19th century, Rockledge was known as a resort town. In the winter months, the population would rise from 200 to almost 2,000 people. Up until about 1911, access to Rockledge was via boat and rail. Steamboats in the Indian River connected with Henry Flagler's trains to bring people to the North. Small boats, sailboats, and small launches frequently stopped to unload freight and passengers. Most of the tourists in this time were wealthy and would use the boats to connect to the rail system at that time. After World War I, the automobile allowed the average person to travel to the area and their encampments dotted the area. The Dixie Highway was completed in 1915 and spanned most of Florida. In the 1920s, US1 was paved and replaced the Dixie Highway.[11]

President Grover Cleveland, still in his first term, and his wife visited the city in 1888.[12]

The town had several large hotels in the late 19th century to the early 20th century that catered to Northern tourists escaping cold winters. The condominiums are located at the previous site of Hotel Indian River.

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 13.4 square miles (34.8 km2). 11.9 square miles (30.9 km2) of it is land and 1.5 square miles (3.8 km2) of it (11.03%) is water.[13]

It is bounded on the north by Cocoa, on the west by the St. Johns River and scrubland, to the south by Viera (unincorporated) and Melbourne, and to the east by the Indian River Lagoon and Merritt Island (unincorporated) on the opposite shore.

Climate

Rockledge has a humid subtropical climate, Köppen climate classification Cfa. The area's warm and humid climate is caused primarily by its proximity to the Gulf Stream, which flows off the east coast of Florida. There are two major seasons which characterize the area. One is hot and rainy, lasting from June until late September. The other is the dry season, October through May, brings more moderate temperatures and less frequent rainfall.[14]

Climate data for Rockledge
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °F (°C)89
(32)
92
(33)
93
(34)
97
(36)
97
(36)
101
(38)
102
(39)
101
(38)
98
(37)
96
(36)
91
(33)
89
(32)
102
(39)
Average high °F (°C)71
(22)
74
(23)
77
(25)
81
(27)
86
(30)
90
(32)
91
(33)
91
(33)
88
(31)
84
(29)
79
(26)
73
(23)
91
(33)
Daily mean °F (°C)60
(16)
63
(17)
66
(19)
71
(22)
77
(25)
81
(27)
82
(28)
82
(28)
81
(27)
76
(24)
70
(21)
63
(17)
82
(28)
Average low °F (°C)49
(9)
52
(11)
55
(13)
60
(16)
67
(19)
72
(22)
73
(23)
73
(23)
73
(23)
68
(20)
60
(16)
53
(12)
49
(9)
Record low °F (°C)17
(−8)
27
(−3)
25
(−4)
35
(2)
47
(8)
55
(13)
60
(16)
60
(16)
58
(14)
41
(5)
30
(−1)
21
(−6)
17
(−8)
Precipitation inches (mm)2.27
(57.7)
2.63
(66.8)
3.28
(83.3)
2.13
(54.1)
3.29
(83.6)
6.71
(170.4)
5.96
(151.4)
7.68
(195.1)
7.64
(194.1)
5.06
(128.5)
2.88
(73.2)
2.57
(65.3)
52.1
(1,323.3)
Source: Weather Channel accessdate February 29, 2012

Demographics

As of the census[3] of 2000, there were 20,170 people, 7,864 households, and 5,677 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,884.4 inhabitants per square mile (727.8/km²). There were 8,353 housing units at an average density of 780.4 per square mile (301.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 81.06% White, 14.64% African American, 0.28% Native American, 1.66% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 0.73% from other races, and 1.56% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.28% of the population.

There were 7,864 households out of which 31.0% had children living with them, 56.8% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.8% were non-families. 22.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.51 and the average family size was 2.93.

Per the 2000 Census, the population was distributed as follows:

The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 90.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.3 males.

In 2010, the city had the lowest percentage of people living in poverty of any municipality measured in the county, 5%, compared to an average of 10% countywide.[15]

Economy

Ashley's Restaurant
Ashley's Restaurant on US1

Local businesses focus on technology and aerospace, especially those related to nearby Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral.

Citrus grove production is nominal, producing citrus confections, juice and souvenirs for the tourist trade and for local consumption.

Arts and culture

Annual cultural events

Rockledge has the following annual community events, festivals, and parades:[16]

Museums and other points of interest

Parks and recreation

Rockledge has the following parks:[18]

  • Anderson Stormwater Park
  • Barton Park [under construction]
  • Columbia Park
  • Dick Blake Park
  • Cruickshank Sanctuary
  • Golfview Park
  • Holland Park
  • McClarty Park
  • Memorial Walk at Levitt Park
  • Morris Park
  • Raider Park
  • River Groves Dock
  • Riverwalk - A Family Park
  • Rockledge Park
  • Silver Pines Park
  • Taylor Park
  • Valencia Dock

Government

City of Rockledge First City Hall
City of Rockledge's First City Hall; now used for community events

The City of Rockledge functions under a Council-Manager government. The Mayor and City Council members are elected to three-year terms. There are six City Council members whose terms are staggered to allow election of two council seats each year. The city holds municipal elections on the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November each year.

While the Mayor and the City Council act as the legislative body of the City of Rockledge, the actual operation of the city and its functions lies with the City Manager and his departmental support staff consisting of Assistant City Manager/Finance Director, City Clerk/Public Relations Officer, Building Official, Fire Chief, Chief of Police, Director of Public Works and Director of Wastewater Treatment and Water Reclamation.

The Chairman of the City Council appoints members of the City Council to serve on subcommittees and to represent the City Council on other governmental bodies that require the city's input.[19]

Finances

In 2007, the city had a taxable real estate base of $1.55 billion.[20]

In 2009-10, the city paid $2.2 million for solid waste disposal. This was furnished at a cost of $168.48 annually per residence. Non residential (business) collection cost $632.89 each, annually.[21]

Police

Rockledge has approximately fifty full-time certified police officers serving the city.[22] In addition, there are 18 support staff positions, 5 reserve officers, 8 crossing guards, and 7 civilian volunteers.[22] All police officers must be certified by the State of Florida.[22] In August 2011, the new $4 million dollar police department headquarters was finished and it is located at 1776 Jack Oates Blvd.[23] The old police station on Barton Blvd may be home to a future library and other non-profit organizations, who will lease the former police headquarters from the City.[24][25]

Fire protection

Along with one other city in the county, Rockledge has its own fire department with three stations. There is a county fire department within the city limits.[26]

Boards and committees

The City of Rockledge contains several citizen-run boards and committees that make recommendations to the city on various issues. The positions held on the boards and committees are on a voluntary basis and non-paid. The boards and committees of Rockledge are:[27]

  • Board of Adjustment
  • Board of Adjustment and Appeals
  • Business Development Committee
  • Citizens Advisory Committee
  • Citizens Recreation Advisory Board
  • Code Enforcement Board
  • Community Redevelopment Agency Board of Commissioners
  • Education Advisory Committee
  • Planning Commission
  • Retirement Board, Fire Employees
  • Retirement Board, General Employees
  • Retirement Board, Police Employees
  • The Rockledge Environmental Enhancement Board[28]

The city publishes an official newsletter for residents of Rockledge.

Mayors

  1. Fiske 1929-1933
  2. Barnes 1959-1962
  3. Thomas J. Price ?-current

Personal income

The median income for a household in the city was $45,218, and the median income for a family was $52,332. Males had a median income of $39,434 versus $25,918 for females. The per capita income for the city was $20,700. About 4.0% of families and 6.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.2% of those under age 18 and 7.2% of those age 65 or over.

Industry

The leading industries in Rockledge are Educational, health and social services, 20%; Manufacturing, 12%; and Professional, scientific, management, administrative, and waste management services, 11%.[29]

Rivian Automotive, a tiny start-up, plans to begin production of cars in 2013.[30]

Workforce

In 2007, the average size of Rockledge's labor force was 11,886. Of that group, 11,455 were employed and 431 were unemployed, for an unemployment rate of 3.6%.[31]

Among the most common occupations in Rockledge are Management, professional, and related occupations, 36%. Sales and office occupations, 28%. and Service occupations, 15%. Approximately 72 percent of workers in Rockledge, Florida work for companies, 19 percent work for the government and 6 percent are self-employed.[29]

Housing

In 2008, 45 building permits were issued for 105 units. This was down from 131 permits for 158 units in 2007, which was down from an estimated 106 permits for 341 units in 2006.[32]

The median home price in 2007 was $214,965.[31]

In February 2011, the average price of homes actually sold was $131,500.[33]

Education

The public schools in Rockledge are operated by the Brevard County Public School Board. Local schools include Hans Christian Andersen Elementary; Golfview Elementary; John F. Kennedy Middle School; Ronald McNair Magnet Middle School;[34] and Rockledge High School.

Private schools include St. Mary's Catholic School,[35] Rockledge Christian School,[36] Trinity Lutheran School,[37] and Rockledge Montessori School.[38]

Infrastructure

Transportation

Major roads

Rockledge is served by U.S. Route 1. Major east west roads are oriented towards this north-south road.

The following are at least four-lane roads, unless otherwise designated.

National roads
State roads
County roads

Bus

Rail

Air

Notable people

References

  1. ^ "City of Rockledge Florida Website". City of Rockledge Florida Website. http://www.cityofrockledge.org/Pages/index. Retrieved September 21, 2012.
  2. ^ a b "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Rockledge city, Florida". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. http://factfinder2.census.gov. Retrieved January 30, 2012.
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  4. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. http://geonames.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  5. ^ History of Rockledge
  6. ^ About Rockledge
  7. ^ "Profile for Rockledge, Florida, FL". ePodunk. http://www.epodunk.com/cgi-bin/genInfo.php?locIndex=8880. Retrieved September 21, 2012.
  8. ^ a b http://www.scenicusa.net/092509.html
  9. ^ http://www.reocities.com/yosemite/rapids/8428/hikeplans/cocoa-rockledge/plancocoarock.html
  10. ^ More History of Rockledge
  11. ^ http://ww3.brevardcounty.us/history/documents/02fall.pdf
  12. ^ Indian River Lagoon History
  13. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Rockledge city, Florida". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. http://factfinder2.census.gov. Retrieved January 30, 2012.
  14. ^ http://www.weather.com/outlook/travel/businesstraveler/wxclimatology/monthly/32955
  15. ^ Ryan, MacKenzie (15 December 2010). "Census data notes makeup of towns". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 1A. http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20101215/NEWS01/12150324/Census-data-notes-makeup-of-towns.
  16. ^ http://www.cityofrockledge.org/Pages/RockledgeFL_WebDocs/events1
  17. ^ a b c d e Rockledge Historic Places
  18. ^ City of Rockledge Parks
  19. ^ Mayor & City Council City of Rockledge. Retrieved on 2009-06-23
  20. ^ Dean, James (April 26, 2008). More taxes or fewer services. Florida Today.
  21. ^ "City of Rockledge:Full Cost Accounting of Solid Waste Services Fiscal year - 2009 - 2010 (paid public notice)". City of Rockledge:Full Cost Accounting of Solid Waste Services Fiscal year - 2009 - 2010 (paid public notice). Melbourne, Florida. March 31, 2011. pp. 2B.
  22. ^ a b c http://www.cityofrockledge.org/pages/rockledgefl_police/index
  23. ^ http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2011-08-13/news/os-rockledge-cops-new-station-20110813_1_new-headquarters-rockledge-barton-boulevard
  24. ^ Berman, Dave (27 December 2011). "Rockledge leases part of former police headquarters". Florida Today. http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/floridatoday/access/2547651031.html?FMT=ABS&date=Dec+27%2C+2011.
  25. ^ Cervenka, Susanne (2 June 2011). "Rockledge police station to become community resource center". Florida Today. http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/floridatoday/access/2363737341.html?FMT=ABS&date=Jun+02%2C+2011.
  26. ^ "The Fact Book". The Fact Book. Melbourne, Florida. March 26, 2011. p. 29. http://www.floridatoday.com/article/99999999/NEWS0310/3270308/Fire-stations-.
  27. ^ List of City of Rockledge Boards and Committees
  28. ^ About Town
  29. ^ a b Simply Hired : Rockledge, FL
  30. ^ "Avera Motors of Rockledge becomes Rivian Automotiv". Florida Today. 10 March 2011. Archived from the original on 17 March 2011. http://www.webcitation.org/5xFokIFG7. Retrieved 17 March 2011.
  31. ^ a b Rockledge Community Data Sheet Economic Development Council of Florida's Space Coast. Retrieved on 2009-06-23
  32. ^ Building Permits United States Census Bureau. Retrieved on 2009-06-23
  33. ^ [1]
  34. ^ Ronald McNair Magnet Middle School
  35. ^ St. Mary's Catholic School
  36. ^ Rockledge Christian School
  37. ^ Trinity Lutheran School
  38. ^ Rockledge Montessori School
  39. ^ Basu, Rebecca (3 December 2010). "Rockledge U.S. 1 upgrade is done". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 1B. http://www.floridatoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=201012030318.
  40. ^ a b http://www.cityofrockledge.org/Pages/RockledgeFL_Council/Election%20History.pdf
  41. ^ Space Coast Area Transit official website
  42. ^ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida_East_Coast_Railway#Main_line
  43. ^ http://www.sea-plane.com/Aero%20Adventure/About%20Us.html
  44. ^ "Profile on PGA Tour's official site". http://www.pgatour.com/players/02/71/20/. Retrieved March 5, 2011.
  45. ^ http://www.tvguide.com/news/you-think-dance-41803.aspx

External links