Benthic Resources Survey and Environmental Permitting
This project involves the restoration of the 91st Street Bridge that crosses over Indian Creek, connecting Surfside to Indian Creek Village in Miami-Dade County, FL. Bridge work includes repairs to spalls, joints and cracks and strengthening concrete items such as I beams and fascia arch beams.
Smart-Sciences was hired to perform a benthic resources survey in the project area. The purpose of the survey was to determine the location and extent of benthic resources in the project area, in order to provide NEPA/PD&E documentation and aid in the design and permitting for the bridge restoration. The project area consists of a tidally influenced canal with vertical seawalls on both banks and no coastal wetland vegetation. Seagrass was found in 37% of the survey area with densities of 1-20% depending on the seagrass species. Oysters and soft coral were also found during the survey and other wildlife observed were noted.
No direct impacts to seagrass, surface water or other benthic resources are anticipated for this project. Impacts will be avoided by placing a barge on the north side of the bridge where no benthic resources are present. Any indirect impacts that may occur during construction are expected to be temporary and will be minimized to the greatest extent by implementing Best Management Practices in accordance with FDOT’s Standard Specifications for Road and Bridge Construction, as well as continued avoidance and minimization measures during final design, permitting and construction.
Smart-Sciences is assisting the engineer with obtaining a Class I permit from Miami-Dade County, USCG Clearance and an Environmental Resources Permit from the South Florida Water Management District.