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The Jacksonville District currently has five categories of public notice notification mailing lists. If you wish to receive email notifications when new public notices are added to this page, please send a request to Regulatory Webmaster.  Each category is described below. Be sure to specify which list(s) you want to be included on.

Florida - This includes all public notices for projects being reviewed for Standard Permits within the State of Florida.

Antilles - This includes all public notices for projects being reviewed for Standard Permits within the Antilles area (this includes Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands).

Tropical Storms & Other Emergencies - These public notices provide information on procedures for emergency permitting requirements due to specific tropical storm events or other emergency situations.

Special Issues - These are public notices that involve the Regulatory program but which are generally not limited to one particular geographic area. These would include public notices for the establishment or modification of Restricted Areas/Danger Zones, re-issuance of General Permits or Nationwide Permits, changes to guidance and policies, etc.

Administrative Penalty - These public notices provide information associated with Administrative Penalties. An Administrative Penalty can be assessed to address violations associated with issued Department of the Army permits.

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SAJ-1995-05051 (SP-MRE)

Posted: 11/21/2017

Expiration date: 12/12/2017


TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: The Jacksonville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has received an application for a Department of the Army permit pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. §1344) as described below:

APPLICANT: PGA Tour Incorporated
                      100 PGA Tour Boulevard
                      Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida 32082

WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States (wetlands) associated with the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. The project site is contiguous to Palm Valley Road in Sections 34, 42, 51, Township 3 South, Range 29 East; and, Section 3, 4, 39, 70, Township 4 South, Range 29 East, Ponte Vedra Beach, St. Johns County, Florida.

APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES:  Latitude 30.191261°
                                                                          Longitude -81.387333°

PROJECT PURPOSE:

Basic: The basic project purpose is commercial development.

Overall: The overall project purpose is the expansion of the PGA Tour facilities in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

EXISTING CONDITIONS:

Elevations and Hydrology: The U.S. Geological Survey topographical maps for this area (Palm Valley, 1992) indicate that the site has elevations within the 5-foot topographic interval. Within the site, the property appears to slope gently from eastern portions of the site towards the adjacent properties and Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway.

Soils: The Soil Survey of St. Johns County, Florida identifies five soil types within the boundaries of the property. These soil types are Manatee Fine Sandy loam, frequently flooded (22), Tocoi Fine Sand (34), Riviera Fine Sand, frequently flooded (36) Tomoka Muck (41), and Riviera Fine Sand, depressional (61).

Vegetative Communities: The project site encompasses seven land use types identified by the Florida Land Use, Cover, and Forms Classification System (FLUCFCS) Handbook (Florida Department of Transportation, Surveying and Mapping Office, Thematic Mapping Section January 1999).
Open Land, Pervious / Developed (FLUCFCS code 190a): This community type comprises the areas within the property where the dominant vegetation is maintained St. Augustine grass (Stenotaphrum secundatum) with scattered live oaks (Quercus virginiana) and slash pines (Pinus elliottii). Several existing dirt roads and walking paths, associated with parking and access, traverse these areas.

Open Land, Semi-Pervious / Developed (FLUCFCS code 190b): This community type comprises the areas within the property that are semi-pervious due to the presence of gravel. The gravel provides an even surface for parking and pedestrian access during The Players Championship (TPC) tournament.

Open Land, Non-Pervious / Developed (FLUCFCS code 190c): There are four impervious areas within the property (two concrete pad areas, a concrete walkway, and an asphalt access road with a turnaround). The concrete pad areas provide a sturdy surface for larger vehicles to load and unload during activities associated with TPC and to provide material staging areas for maintenance projects associated with the adjacent golf course. The concrete walkway provides access to the golf course from the parking area. The asphalt access road and turnaround accommodates a shuttle-service passenger drop off during events.

Pine - Mesic Oak (FLUCFCS code 414): This community type comprises the forested upland areas within the property. Characteristic vegetation includes slash pine, southern red cedar (Juniperus silicicola), water oak (Quercus nigra), cabbage palm (Sabal palmetto) and wax myrtle (Myrica cerifera).

Upland-Cut Ditch / Canal / Ditch (FLUCFCS code 510): The ditches within the property form part of the golf course water management system; and, efficiently move water away from the golf course and maintain the water level within the golf course ponds. Maintenance of these ditches occurs regularly. The side slopes of the ditches generally are very steep and support minimal vegetation. These ditches do meet the vegetation, hydrology, and soils requirements for classification as wetlands, as denoted on the most recent Federal Approved Jurisdictional Determination.

Wetland Forested Mixed / Bottomland Forest (FLUCFCS code 630): Dominant canopy vegetation within the forested wetlands includes slash pine, bald cypress (Taxodium distichum), red maple (Acer rubrum), and sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua). Characteristic sub-canopy species include cabbage palm and dahoon holly (Ilex cassine). Groundcover vegetation generally includes cinnamon fern (Osmunda cinnamomea), netted chainfern (Woodwardia areolata) and wax myrtle.

Specialty Farms- Agronomy Center (FLUCFCS code 250): This area is an agronomy center that provides storage space for golf course maintenance equipment and supplies. The agronomy center also serves as a nursery area for a variety of plant and tree material used for landscaping the golf course and facilities.

PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to discharge clean fill material over a total of 3.07 acres of wetlands and 7.05 acres of ditches that support wetlands. The work would facilitate the construction of an office complex, with parking and a stormwater management system, which would serve as the PGA Tour World Headquarters. The work also would facilitate the installation of additional site features that would increase public safety and event security, improve facility maintenance and event support access, and improve site security.

AVOIDANCE AND MINIMIZATION INFORMATION – The applicant has provided the following information in support of efforts to avoid and/or minimize impacts to the aquatic environment:

The project augments the existing facility and cannot be located at another site. Due to the location, size, and orientation of the onsite wetlands, the project cannot be implemented without work affecting those wetlands. Several design configurations were examined to minimize work affecting the onsite wetlands; and, the proposed design avoids and minimizes the work affecting wetlands to the maximum extent practical.

COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant has offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional loss to the aquatic environment:

The project site is not within the service area of a federally approved mitigation bank. Therefore, the applicant proposes on-site compensatory mitigation consisting of 1.66 acres of mixed-forested wetland creation, 0.10 acre of wetland enhancement, 36.10 acres of wetland preservation, and 7.26 acres of upland preservation. The proposed mitigation plan has been evaluated using the Uniform Mitigation Assessment Method (UMAM) and provides sufficient functional gain to offset proposed impacts and provide long-term ecological value.

CULTURAL RESOURCES: A Cultural Resource Assessment Survey of the entire property was completed in 1980 and filed with the State Historic Preservation Office (Survey #259; Swindal D. et. al., Cultural Resource Assessment of the Arvida Tract in St. Johns County Florida). That survey did not identify any historical or cultural resources. Separately, the Corps has determined the permit area has been extensively modified by previous work and there is little likelihood a historic property may be affected.

ENDANGERED SPECIES:

Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) could utilize the area encompassed by the project ESA scope of analysis. The project site is approximately 4 miles from the Dee Dot Ranch Wood Stork colony; and, within the Core Foraging Area of this colony. The project site encompasses numerous ditches that meet the definition of suitable foraging habitat (SFH); and, several ditches that do not meet the definition of SFH due to the presence of heavy canopy cover. The project does not affect the majority of the ditches that provide SFH. A field inspection of the site determined that the work proposed would affect less than 0.5 acre of SFH. In consideration of this information, the Corps utilized The Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Jacksonville Ecological Services Field Office and State of Florida Effect Determination Key for the Wood Stork in Central and North Peninsular Florida, September 2008, to determine potential effects upon this species. Use of this key resulted in the sequence A-B-C-may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service previously indicated that they concur with determinations of may affect, not likely to adversely affect based on the key for Wood Storks; and, that no additional consultation is necessary.

Red Cockaded Woodpecker (Picoides borealis) – The project site is approximately 2.7 miles from the nearest identified nest or cluster location for Red Cockaded Woodpecker (#1692); and, the very western edge of the property is within the consultation area identified by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the Corps for this species. Therefore, Red Cockaded Woodpecker may utilize the project site. Habitat for Red Cockaded Woodpecker typically incorporates mature pine woodlands (not wetlands); and, optimal habitat is characterized as a broad savanna with a scattered overstory of large pines and a dense groundcover containing a diversity of grass and shrub species. Nesting and roosting occur in cavity trees that are almost exclusively old, living, flat-topped pine trees. The project site does not encompass typical or optimum habitat; or, trees capable of supporting cavities. Further, as significant forested habitat is located near the project site, it is likely that this species would only opportunistically forage at the site, which the project would not preclude. Therefore, the Corps has determined that the project would have no effect on this species.

The Corps executed a Resources At Risk (RAR) report. The RAR did not indicate that the site is utilized by, or contains habitat critical to, any other federally listed threatened or endangered species. The Corps also reviewed geospatial data and other available information. The Corps has not received or discovered any information that the project site is utilized by, or contains habitat critical to, any other federally listed threatened or endangered species.

ESSENTIAL FISH HABITAT (EFH): This notice initiates consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service on EFH as required by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act 1996. The project does not affect marine or estuarine habitat. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have an adverse impact on EFH or federally managed fisheries in the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. Our final determination relative to project impacts and the need for mitigation measures is subject to review by and coordination with the National Marine Fisheries Service.

NOTE: This public notice is being issued based on information furnished by the applicant. This information has not been verified or evaluated to ensure compliance with laws and regulation governing the regulatory program. Corps personnel previously verified the jurisdictional line.

AUTHORIZATION FROM OTHER AGENCIES: Water Quality Certification may be required from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and/or one of the state Water Management Districts.

COMMENTS regarding the potential authorization of the work proposed should be submitted in writing to the attention of the District Engineer through the Jacksonville Permits Section, Post Office Box 4970, Jacksonville, Florida 32232 within 21 days from the date of this notice.

The decision whether to issue or deny this permit application will be based on the information received from this public notice and the evaluation of the probable impact to the associated wetlands. This is based on an analysis of the applicant's avoidance and minimization efforts for the project, as well as the compensatory mitigation proposed.

QUESTIONS concerning this application should be directed to the project manager, Mark R. Evans, in writing at the Jacksonville Permits Section, Post Office Box 4970, Jacksonville, Florida 32232; by electronic mail at mark.r.evans@usace.army.mil; by facsimile transmission at (904)232-1940; or, by telephone at (904)232-2028.

IMPACT ON NATURAL RESOURCES: Coordination with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Marine Fisheries Services, and other Federal, State, and local agencies, environmental groups, and concerned citizens generally yields pertinent environmental information that is instrumental in determining the impact the proposed action will have on the natural resources of the area.

EVALUATION: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits, which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal, must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including cumulative impacts thereof; among these are conservation, economics, esthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historical properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food, and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership, and in general, the needs and welfare of the people. Evaluation of the impact of the activity on the public interest will also include application of the guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, EPA, under authority of Section 404(b) of the Clean Water Act or the criteria established under authority of Section 102(a) of the Marine Protection Research and Sanctuaries Act of 1972. A permit will be granted unless its issuance is found to be contrary to the public interest.

The US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, State, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other Interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps to determine whether to issue, modify, condition, or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this determination, comments are used to assess impacts to endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.

COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT CONSISTENCY: In Florida, the State approval constitutes compliance with the approved Coastal Zone Management Plan. In Puerto Rico, a Coastal Zone Management Consistency Concurrence is required from the Puerto Rico Planning Board. In the Virgin Islands, the Department of Planning and Natural Resources permit constitutes compliance with the Coastal Zone Management Plan.

REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING: Any person may request a public hearing. The request must be submitted in writing to the District Engineer within the designated comment period of the notice and must state the specific reasons for requesting the public hearing.

permit public notice St. Johns County U.S. Army Corps of Engineers USACE