Categories: environment

Getting a Glimpse at Bayou Chico Restoration Efforts

A pair of stormwater treatment projects aimed at cleansing Bayou Chico will be on display Aug. 25, as the city of Pensacola hosts a public meeting to familiarize people with the projects and take public comment to be incorporated into the final designs.

The two projects — the Bill Gregory Park Regional Stormwater Treatment, and R Street at Maggie’s Ditch Stormwater Treatment Enhancement projects — are part of a larger group of projects intended to help restore the waters of Bayou Chico, which has suffered from many years of pollution, including commercial and industrial runoff. The group of projects is being funded from a pot of restoration money stemming from penalties associated with the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Bill Gregory Park

This project is intended to capture and treat stormwater from approximately 37 acres which currently discharges untreated runoff into Bayou Chico. The two-tier treatment center will remove debris and floatables, as well as sediment.

This project will also feature a detention pond. In addition to aiding in water quality, the 2.5 acre pond will also serve as a wetland habitat.
The cost of this project is $2,180,000.

R Street at Maggie’s Ditch

This project will capture and treat runoff from about 225 acres of mostly commercial areas, which currently discharges untreated stormwater into Maggie’s Ditch, a manmade wetland tributary that discharges into the bayou. The project includes an underground treatment unit that is designed to remove 50 percent of “total suspended solids,” as well as debris and floatables. The system will remove an estimated 20 tons of solids annually.

This project, located on the property of the Global Learning Academy, is a collaborative effort with the Escambia County School District. It costs $865,000, and will serve to protect the already completed Maggie’s Ditch Wetland Enhancement Phase I and II projects.

The public meeting Thursday night will be an open-house format, with no formal presentation. Project representatives will be on hand to explain the projects and answer questions, and public comment will also be taken.

The meeting is scheduled from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Global Learning Academy, 100 North P Street, in Pensacola.

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