Boca Raton ATMS  

Marine Information

Marine Information

Boca Raton Inlet
The City of Boca Raton has many waterways and has appointed a Marine Advisory Board to oversee a majority of issues, which affect those waterways. These issues include such things as beach renourishment, dredging, marine structures, boat launching, boating destinations, marine enforcement, manatee protection zones, boating safety zones, draw bridge operations and signing. This web page provides information about these issues and provides links to other sites to assist those interested in marine issues.

The City of Boca Raton has 77.18 miles of canals and lakes The City is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean on the east and has one of the most beautiful inlets in South Florida. The marine environment of Boca Raton is one of the reasons the City is so lovely. The City has both commercial and pleasure craft in the area and three boating destination parks, which include Spanish River, Silver Palm and James Rutherford. Although the City has no commercial marinas, it does have ample marinas just south and north of the City limits, which provide fuel, food, repairs and boat storage and dockage.

Boca Raton Inlet The City of Boca Raton has one boat ramp for motorized vessels at Silver Palm Park, which is located on Palmetto Park Road at the Intracoastal Waterway. The City has 2 non-motorized launching facilities at Spanish River Park and James Rutherford Park.

Boat rentals, jet skis rentals and boat charters are available at the Boca Raton Resort for their guests and jet skis can be rented by guests of the Bridge Hotel, located on Camino Real just west of SR A1A.

Boca Raton has 4 drawbridges, which include the Camino Real, Palmetto Park Road and the Spanish River Blvd Bridges, which span the Intracoastal Waterway and SR A1A Bridge spans the Boca Raton Inlet. Currently the Palmetto Park Road and Spanish River Blvd. bridges open on the hour and half hour. The Camino Real Bridge opens every 20 minutes; and the Boca Raton Inlet bridge opens on demand.

Boating Advisory

Boca Raton Inlet

In accordance with the United States Coast Guard Notice to Mariners, local knowledge is required to safely navigate the Boca Raton Inlet. Please familiarize yourself with the inlet prior to trying to navigate through this area.

Local Knowledge Required!

Boating Safety

ICW Boating Zone
Boating Safety Zones are designated in areas where problems exist such as boating crashes or enforcement problems. The following link provides a map of both Boating Safety Zones and Manatee Protection Zones in the City of Boca Raton: Florida Conservation's Website.

Boating Safety classes provided by US Coast Guard Auxiliary
U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary HeadquartersThe USCG also supports the Local Coast Guard Auxiliary, which does such things as boating inspections signing, lighting and buoy inspections. Assistance is also provided for special events such as the annual Boat Parade and the Ft. Lauderdale Air and Sea Show. The USCG Auxiliary has a web site at this address:

The City of Boca Raton has a Marine Structures Code, which can be found in Chapter 22 of the City Code of Ordinances. This code and all City codes can be found at this web site: The City adopted a mooring ordinance, which can be found in Section 9-50 at the same web site.


Dredging Boca Raton InletThe Municipal Services Dredging Section is in charge of bypassing sand at the Boca Raton Inlet. Captain Al Bitterling and his very able crew operate the dredge. The dredge, when not pumping, is anchored in the inlet just south of the Inlet Bridge. The dredge tug is docked at Silver Palm Park when not in use. The City is required to by-pass 70,000 cubic yards of sand from the north side of the inlet to the south side each year. The Boca Raton Inlet does not have a marked channel so local knowledge is needed to safely navigate this area.

Dredging Boca Raton Inlet The City of Boca Raton has over 4 3/4 miles of beachfront property, which is eroding due to sand shifts to the south. Wave action and storms create the most erosion. It is necessary from time to time to renourish our beaches to protect the properties to the west. These renourishment projects are costly and require extensive study and permitting.

Lagoon Keepers

The City of Boca Raton in cooperation with Lagoon Keepers, currently operates a waterway cleanup vessel in the Boca Raton Area.  The vessel is available to waterfront communities and other volunteer groups who wish to participate in keeping our waterways and shorelines clean of debris and other hazards. For more information, please call Jennifer Bistyga at (561)416-3397.


ManateeManatees are abundant in Boca Raton. They primarily exist in the tidal waters and are mostly seen during the winter months. The State of Florida, Palm Beach County and the City support the protection of Manatees and have established Manatee Protection Zones throughout the City of Boca Raton. Manatee Protection Zones are identified with bright orange and white signage on the waterways. The signage warns boaters of the presence of Manatees and require slower speeds.

If you see an injured Manatees or someone harming a Manatee, please call the Boca Raton Police Services Department immediately at 911 or the Florida Marine Patrol at 561-625-5122.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission also has a web site with information about laws to protect Manatees and can be found on the Florida Conservation's Website

Palmetto Park Road Bridge

Because of the vast array of marine issues which affect the City of Boca Raton, the City Council created a Marine Advisory Board to advise City Council on many issues. This Board is made up of 7 members, who meet the first Wednesday of each month at Municipal Services Building A, located at 2500 N. W. 1st Ave.


From left to right you have Garry O'Donnell, Blaine Dickenson, Tom Thayer Vice Chairman, Gene Folden Chairman, Art Grossman Treasure, Karen Akers, Don Stone

Marine Advisory Board

The City of Boca Raton Police Services Department has a dedicated Marine Unit, which patrols the waters of the City of Boca Raton, and enforces Local, State and Federal ordinances, regulations and laws. This Unit has boats and jet skis for patrolling all waterways, no matter how small or shallow. Because Boca Raton is a coastal community surrounded by water, the Police Services Department also has a very highly trained and capable Professional Dive Team, which can respond to incidents underwater.

Boca Raton Police DepartmentThe Palm Beach County Sheriff's Department has a Marine Unit which also patrols the waterways of the City of Boca Raton and all of Palm Beach County. Their web site is located at this address

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission formally known as the Florida Marine Patrol also provides approximately 20 officers to Palm Beach County. These officers are assigned to Marine and Land duties but patrols in Boca Raton from time to time. Their web site is located at This agency is responsible for setting Boating Safety Zones which is set by the Law Enforcement Division and Manatee Protection Zones which is set by the Endangered Species Division.

Unnecessary Bridge OpeningThe United States Coast Guard provides patrols through the area from time to time. The local agencies coordinate search and rescue, drug enforcement, and security efforts with U.S.C.G. Their resources include small to large boats, helicopters, jets and other aircraft. They have a web site at

Unnecessary Bridge Openings:

The City of Boca Raton drawbridges compete with motorized vehiclular traffic. This issue has created a need for all boaters to become familiar with their clearance requirements and to remember when approaching a bridge to lower all non-fixed appendages such as outriggers, antennas, canopies, etc.