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June 21, 2007

The Southwest Florida Management District recently signed an agreement with Sarasota County to move forward on a project that will help reduce flooding associated with heavy rains in the Alligator Creek watershed.

The Alligator Creek watershed spans approximately nine miles in Sarasota County and includes Banyan Drive, Bal Harbour Drive, Venice East Drive, Venice East Boulevard and the Briarwood area. These areas become impassable during 10-, 25- and 100-year storm events.

The project involves improving the flow of the stormwater runoff by installing larger culverts and widening the channels between flooded areas and adding stormwater storage by converting the old Briarwood wastewater treatment percolation ponds to stormwater retention ponds.
The project is also expected to improve water quality by increasing the amount of time runoff stays in the new storage pond.

This project is estimated to cost up to $3.4 milion. Funding is divided between the District’s Manasota Basin Board and Sarasota County. The District’s share of $1.5 million is divided over fiscal years 2007 through 2009. This year’s funding is $750,000. Funding in fiscal years 2008 and 2009 is contingent upon Basin Board approval.

The project is expected to be complete by October 2009.

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