Palm River Restoration Gets Under Way

News Release

h2. Project Will Improve Water Quality and Restore Habitat

Work is under way to restore habitat and repair erosion along the banks of the Palm River in Tampa.

The Palm River is part of the Tampa Bypass Canal, and flows from the District's S-160 Flood Control Structure, located just north of the Selmon Expressway, to the mouth of McKay Bay.

During the construction of the Tampa Bypass Canal in the 1960s, the Palm River required significant dredging. In the 1970s, areas of erosion caused by the construction of the canal were identified along portions of the river. In 1976, Hillsborough County and the "District(Southwest Florida Water Management District)":/ installed rock riprap and vegetation to control erosion.

A 2002 Army Corps of Engineers study identified approximately 20 acres of wetlands and 20 acres of upland areas along the Palm River with a potential for restoration. Two sites were chosen for the current project.

The project's first phase will remove invasive plants, create intertidal marsh platforms and restore upland areas on parcels that are owned by the District located on the east side of McKay Bay along the mouth of the river. Phase II will focus more on water quality benefits and will begin in 2012.

Phase I construction should be complete in the spring. The "District's(Southwest Florida Water Management District)":/ Hillsborough River Basin Board is funding $1.1 million of the project's $2.1 million cost, with funds from the state Surface Water Improvement and Management Program and Department of Transportation covering the rest.