MEXICO BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — Mexico Beach is continuing its growth and tourism in the area is increasing.

Earlier this month the city was awarded a more than $400,000 grant from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission through the Florida Boater Improvement Program.

“They saw the need for us in Mexico Beach as we continue to have increase and influx of people here daily. The opportunity to get in and out of here at the boat ramp, plus it compliments all the changes we’ve made here at our pavilion, fish cleaning station and marina,” Mexico Beach City Administrator Douglas Baber said.

The expansion will add three more lanes for launching and retrieving boats.

“It’s become obvious as people back up all the way to highway 98 to try to get their boats put in especially at the start of snapper season and things of that nature, but it also allows more room for maneuverability in and out,” Baber said.

The grant will also allow them to add two more piers and a floating dock which will provide ADA accessibility and make it easier to get on and off the boat.

“As Mexico Beach continues to grow the tourism continues to increase year after year and we needed to make sure our residents and tourists alike had a little bit more opportunity at our boat ramp which is one of the main reasons they come to Mexico Beach which is for our beautiful beaches and ocean life and things of that nature,” Baber said.

Baber said this expansion along with existing parking will make Mexico Beach one of the largest boat ramps in the Panhandle.

They are hoping it will be finished in time for the next snapper season.