Fort Myers, Florida -- Gov. Rick Scott announced Wednesday the state will commit $90 million for the bridging of a 2.6-mile segment of Tamiami Trail road in South Florida.
The project will deconstruct a section of the berm the road is currently built on and replace it with a bridge so that water north of the road can flow into the Everglades and keep more high nutrient water from entering the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie Estuaries.
"This $90 million investment will be a huge step forward in our efforts to restore water quality throughout South Florida," said Gov. Scott. "Every drop of water that we can send South and keep out of the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie Estuaries is a win for Florida families. We are putting forward strategies each and every day to address the water quality issues that are impacting families in our state."
Currently, state officials say the Trail inhibits water flow forcing storm water runoff to drain from Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie Estuaries instead of flowing south through the Everglades.
The total cost of the project is estimated at $180 million with the state matching federal funds of $90 million.
In the meantime, the SFWMD is taking emergency action to store excess water on public and private lands. This fall, the SFWMD will begin work on a $16 million project at Lake Hicpochee to help control flows into the Caloosahatchee.