Today, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) Governing Board awarded a contract for the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP) New Water Seepage Barrier Project. This project builds on the successful 8.5 Square Mile Area Seepage Wall Project that broke ground in August 2021 and increases the length of the seepage wall. These projects help support increased flows of water from the Central Everglades into Everglades National Park while mitigating potential flooding to nearby communities.
"Today marks another great day for America's Everglades. I am proud of the historic progress we continue to make to remove barriers to move water south where its needed while reducing harmful discharges to our estuaries," said SFWMD Governing Board Chairman Chauncey Goss. "Thanks to the leadership of Gov. Ron DeSantis and my fellow board members, we are seeing record progress to restore the Everglades. Our actions today will ensure that this underground wall not only supports our restoration goals to get more water to the Everglades and Florida Bay, it also helps to mitigate flooding in nearby communities. A true win-win."
The District will install approximately 4.9 miles of a new seepage wall along the L-357 West Levee. The wall will add to the 2.3 mile segment of the seepage wall that is almost finished along the same levee and the C-358 Canal. Recent rainfall events demonstrated the success of the completed portions of the seepage wall, which retained water in Everglades National Park and helped keep residential areas dry.
The CEPP suite of Everglades restoration projects focuses on restoring flows into and through the central and southern Everglades by increasing storage and treatment south of Lake Okeechobee, improving conveyance to the Central Everglades, and removing barriers to move water south.
Gov. DeSantis prioritized improving water quality and completing Everglades restoration projects for the State of Florida with the Achieving More Now for Florida's Environment Executive Order signed in January 2019. SFWMD continues to advance key Everglades restoration projects that will send more water south, reduce harmful discharges to the estuaries, and improve water quality in South Florida.