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Water Conveyance Improvements in South Florida to Support Local Agriculture

South Florida Water Management District

Belle Glade, FL

As a part a collaboration with the State of Florida and US EPA to improve water quality in America's Everglades, the South Florida Water Management District is implementing a technical plan that included this effort to improve conveyance within the eastern Everglades Agricultural Area.

Topics Covered

Hurricanes & Severe Storms
Stormwater Management
Water Quality

Cost

Initial: 7 Million USD

Funding

General Fund/Existing Public Funds

Taxes & User Fees

State and local grants

Project Status

Operational since 2016

Gov Champion

South Florida Water Management District

Problem Addressed

In June 2012, the State of Florida and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reached consensus on new restoration strategies for further improving water quality in America’s Everglades.

Based on months of scientific and technical discussions, these strategies will expand water quality improvement projects to help achieve the phosphorus water quality standard established for the Everglades. Under these strategies, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) is implementing a regional water quality plan that includes expanded water treatment and storage.

Solutions Used

Great Lakes E&I worked to provide services for the Conveyance Improvements project to support the Everglades Agricultural Area.

The project included dewatering of canal and farm ditches using pumps to construct adjacent farm roads, blasting of 12,700 lf of 40 ft wide canal, excavation of 12,700 lf of canal to elevation -2.0, construction of 4 separate cofferdams, placement of spoil pile embankment, and installation of drainage culverts. One unique challenge was having to drill and blast in order to break up the limestone rock layer within the proposed footprint of the new canal. Excavated material was used to construct the rock core for the spoil pile embankment adjacent to the canal for flood control, and rock material was placed in lifts using a bulldozer. Stockpiled muck was then placed and compacted atop the rock core to increase the embankment elevation. Drainage culverts were installed to facilitate the movement of irrigation water to and from fields adjacent to the project.

Outcomes

1

Water is now able to be collected and stored after a large storm for reuse after natural filtration

2

Additional much needed water is provided to surrounding farmlands

3

Created approximately 27 new jobs within the State

4

Saved SFWMD $897,292 compared to probable construction cost estimate

Something Unique

Delivered 3 months ahead of schedule.

Last Updated

May 12th, 2022
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