MacDill Air Force Base Phase 5
Ecosphere secured a $37,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County, matched by $120,000 from MacDill AFB, to continue restoration of the entire southern coastline of the base in 2021. These funds will be used to recontour the final section of mosquito ditches, restoring natural sheet flow, and to create an additional 10 acres of high salt marshes, or salterns -- a rare and valuable habitat in Tampa Bay.
PARTNERS: MacDill AFB, Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County
Suncoast Youth Conservation Center Living Shoreline
Ecosphere will showcase nature-based alternatives to hardened seawalls as an educational demonstration of shoreline protection options for waterfront homeowners. The demonstrations will be installed along a berm separating two ponds at the Suncoast Youth Conservation Center in Apollo Beach. The Center is operated as a partnership of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), Tampa Electric Co. (TECO) and The Florida Aquarium. Featured techniques include a traditional seawall, use of oyster reef balls and bags, and a Living Shoreline comprised solely of native plants. This "grey-to-green" design continuum provides a range of design options to improve resiliency and protect coastal property from flooding and storm surges.
Educational signs will describe the techniques, and the project will be incorporated into youth lesson plans and programs. College interns will monitor the long-term succession of these installed shorelines, an often-missing component of such projects.
Funding comes from a $43,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County, with$67,500 in support from FWC.
PARTNERS: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, TECO, Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County