JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District has awarded its second construction contract this year for the Kissimmee River Restoration project, a large-scale Everglades restoration project spanning through Highlands and Okeechobee counties.
The $4.7 million construction contract was awarded to BCPeabody Construction Services Inc. of Tampa, Fla. on Monday (Sept. 28). The contract, known as the C-38 Reach 3 Backfill and Bass Embankment Degrade contract, will involve backfilling a portion of the channelized Kissimmee River (C-38 Canal) within the upcoming months.
"Backfilling portions of the C-38 Canal will restore pre-channelized conditions along the Kissimmee River and provide valuable ecological benefits,” said April Patterson, Jacksonville District project manager. "It will enable native plants and animals to return to the area and also restore the floodplain to its natural hydrologic function."
Once backfilling begins, navigation will be interrupted for approximately 1.5 miles along the channelized Kissimmee River beginning at the US 98 bridge and extending south. It is anticipated that backfilling operations will take approximately one year to complete. Access to the river will remain open at the Istokpoga, S-65C and S-65D boat ramps. However, navigation through the construction zone will be prohibited during this time period.
This is the second construction contract awarded for the Kissimmee River Restoration project this year. The MacArthur Ditch Backfill construction contract was awarded Jan. 15, 2015 to Herve Cody Contractor from Robbinsville, North Carolina and is currently 22 percent complete.
“Only two additional construction contracts need to be awarded for the Kissimmee River Restoration project, Reach 2 Backfill and S-69 Weir, both of which are scheduled to be awarded within the next two years,” said Patterson. “The entire project is scheduled to be completed in 2019.”
The Kissimmee River Restoration project is a congressionally authorized undertaking sponsored by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers and the South Florida Water Management District. Once completed, the Kissimmee River Restoration Project will restore more than 40 square miles of river-floodplain ecosystem, including almost 20,000 acres of wetlands and 44 miles of historic river channel.
Additional information on the Kissimmee River Restoration project available at: http://bit.ly/Everglades_KRR
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