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A freshwater lens occurs when rainwater seeps through the surface and gathers over the seawater. Freshwater is less dense than sea water, so it floats on top of the sea water. The weight of the rainwater that percolates into the ground depresses the salt water beneath it forming a profile that has the appearance of a lens. It is a source of fresh water for the island. We want to get rid of our storm water by allowing it to percolate to our fresh water lens.
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When we get a big rain, we have a lot of standing water and flooding in different areas of the City. And sometime, when the tide is high, the drainage flow to alleviate flooding can be very slow or even reversed, and this causes even more flooding. The City's stormwater improvements are designed to help with the City's overall flooding issues by reducing the time it takes for standing flood waters to drain.
The stormwater trench acts like a French drain. The trench absorbs the surface water, and the rock and filter fabric allow the water to slowly drain to the island's freshwater lens.
The City is installing stormwater trenches along and within the City's 10-foot wide platted alleys. If you have items or structures within the platted alleys that isn't removed upon construction commencement, the items will be removed and placed within the limits of the private property.
The entire project is scheduled to begin in November, 2017 and end in January, 2018. However each day of construction, areas will be excavated and filled the same day to ensure that no hazards are left open overnight or through weekends.
The stormwater improvements are funded by the City's stormwater utility fee and a grant from the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
You can call the City Engineer, Lynn Burnett, at 941-718-7625 or the Public Works Director, Tom Woodard, 941-778-1005, extension 212 with any questions. Also, the complete project book containing plans and contracts are available for review at City Hall.