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SFWMD Issues Final Construction Contract to Complete Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands Project


Florida - Tuesday December 26, 2023: The South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) Governing Board today unanimously approved the final construction contract for the Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands (BBCW) Project in Miami-Dade County. This key restoration effort for Biscayne Bay is one of several Everglades restoration projects prioritized by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

"Thanks to the support from Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida Legislature along with our partners at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - Jacksonville District and Miami-Dade County, we are moving full-speed ahead on restoration projects that support Biscayne Bay," said SFWMD Vice Chairman and Biscayne Bay Commission Member Scott Wagner. "The Bay is at the heart of our way of life in Miami. It is both economically and environmentally significant to Florida, and we will continue the momentum to advance large-scale projects to further protect the water resources across our region."

Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands Restoration Project Fact Sheet

The Governing Board's action today awarded the BBCW Cutler Flow Way Conveyance System Project contract to Central Florida Equipment Rentals, Inc. and includes:

  • The construction of an above-ground concrete-lined channel approximately 7,000 feet in length,
  • Concrete-box culvert and micro tunnel culvert,
  • Rehydration canal that is approximately 2.5 miles in length, and 
  • Recreational features.

The Biscayne Bay Coastal Wetlands Project is part of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) that aims to restore the quality, quantity, timing and distribution of water within the Greater Everglades Ecosystem. All components of the BBCW Project will be complete by 2026. The BBCW Project includes three components: Deering Estate, L-31E Flow Way and Cutler Wetlands. These projects, coupled with local efforts, will build coastal resiliency and improve water quality.
This project restores freshwater flows to southern Biscayne Bay and Biscayne National Park while improving salinity distribution near the shore. It also restores historical freshwater wetland habitat adjacent to the Bay, which acts like a sponge, soaking up water in the wet season and slowly releasing it in a more natural pattern. Reestablishing productive nearshore habitat also supports nursery habitat for key marine wildlife including shellfish. In addition, there are long stretches of mangroves within Biscayne Bay. Mangroves provide natural infrastructure to help protect nearby populated areas by reducing storm surge impacts during major weather events and they provide a nursery for wildlife.

Supporting the health of Biscayne Bay remains a priority for SFWMD. In partnership with Miami-Dade County and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, SFWMD also works to reduce litter and debris from reaching the Bay through the regional canal system.

Additional restoration efforts involving SFWMD are being planned within CERP in the Biscayne Bay and Southeastern Everglades Ecosystem Restoration (BBSEER) Project in partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.