JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District awarded one of two remaining construction contracts for the Kissimmee River Restoration Project, a massive Everglades restoration project in Polk and Osceola counties.
The $4,837,000 C-37 Embankment Armoring construction contract was awarded to Herve Cody Contractor from Robbinsville, North Carolina on September 19.The contract involves placing one-mile of turf reinforcement mat system and approximately 1.7 miles of riprap along the eastern canal of the Kissimmee River.
Construction is scheduled to begin this fall and will take approximately 18 months to complete. During this time, there will be a no wake zone between Lake Hatchinehea and Lake Kissimmee. Additionally, navigation in the C-38 Canal will be prohibited between S-65A and S-65D, north of the US Hwy 98 Bridge. Navigation south of the construction site will be available via the S-65D Boat Ramp.
“We are in the final stretch of construction for the Kissimmee River Restoration project,” said Tiphanie J. Mattis, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District project manager. “We are working to put the final components in place for this project in order to provide significant benefits to the Kissimmee River Basin, Lake Okeechobee, and subsequently, the entire Everglades ecosystem.”
To date, the Corps has completed over 30 construction contracts as part of the Kissimmee River Restoration project. With the award of the C-37 Embankment Armoring contract, only one construction contract remains for the project.
The Kissimmee River Restoration project is a congressionally authorized undertaking by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers and the South Florida Water Management District, the non-federal sponsor. The project encompasses the removal of two water control structures, filling approximately 22 miles of canal, and restoring over 40 square miles of the river channel and floodplain ecosystem, including approximately 27,000 acres of wetlands.
In restored areas, comprehensive monitoring has documented substantial improvements in the river and its floodplain, making the project a model for large-scale ecosystem restoration efforts. Aquatic wading bird and duck populations in the restored river and floodplain region have soared, shorebird species have returned, organic deposits on the river bottom have decreased by 71 percent, and reestablished sand bars provide new habitat for native species. In addition to the significant ecological improvements provided by this project, restoration of the historic river will also slow the movement of water and increase the time it takes for it to get to Lake Okeechobee, helping to slow down the rise in the lake
Additional information on the Kissimmee River Restoration project available at: http://bit.ly/Everglades_KRR
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