The District has started restoring an area of the Weeki Wachee Springs State Park canoe launch in Hernando County this week. The restored area will benefit the Weeki Wachee spring system by reducing stormwater pollutants and sediment loading entering the Weeki Wachee River.
Nutrient levels have increased in Weeki Wachee Springs for the past several decades. The springs have been identified as impaired due to abundant algae caused by excess nitrogen. Human activity, including the use of the canoe launch area, has contributed to the increased nutrients and sediment loading. Pollutants run off the launch area and parking lot into the Weeki Wachee River.
The improvement project will reduce these stormwater pollutants by stabilizing soils at the ramp entrance. The project will construct concrete curbs and a pervious access path, which will allow rainfall to soak into the soil and reduce runoff into the river. Grounded shell also will be added to stabilize the existing access path and canoe storage area.
The project is expected to take up to three months to complete. For safety, the canoe launch will be closed to the public during construction. An alternate launch will be provided within the park during the construction project. Operations will continue, and guests will still be able to access the Weeki Wachee River. Visit the state park’s social media for more details and updates.
For more information about the District’s springs projects, visit WaterMatters.org/Springs.