STEELFIELD - After more than a year of negotiations and planning, a public gun range for local residents will soon be a reality.
Bay County officials and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission broke ground on the new facility Wednesday afternoon.
It will be built in the Steelfield community, off Highway 79, near the county's landfill.
County commissioners pushed for the range after the huge response to them opening the Bay County Sheriff's Office range for a few weekends last year. Officials say the nearly 200 acre space is ideal for gun lovers.
"It's just a good fit for us out here in this location it's not really developed so its not a situation where we have to worry about a lot of residential and commercial development around us. We've got plenty of open space. It'll be a good safe environment for folks to come to," said Guy Tunnell, Bay County Commission Chairman.
Commissioners approved the proposal last summer. The gun range will open to the public in about 4 months.