Groundwork Jacksonville has been awarded a $294,000 contribution from National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), with support from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and AT&T, earmarked for the preliminary (30%) design of the Hogans Creek restoration. The goal of the resilience project is to reduce flooding, improve water quality, restore habitat and provide access to recreation in and around the creek.
In addition to its contribution, AT&T has made available rich climate data that has neighborhood-level projections for flood risks. Publicly available and currently covering four states in the Southeast (FL, GA, NC, SC), AT&T hopes to help communities better understand and take action to address the near and long-term impacts of climate change locally.
According to Groundwork CEO Kay Ehas, the 30% design is projected to cost $676,000 and take approximately one year to complete. “The NFWF grant, combined with $100,000 from Jacksonville Environmental Protection Board approved last week, and generous private donations we’ve received, enables us to move forward with the project while we secure the $175,500 needed to close the gap,” she added.
Following a similar approach it took with the McCoys Creek restoration that begins this year, Groundwork will hire a creek expert to develop a master concept plan, 30% construction plans, and a cost-benefit analysis. This preliminary design plan and reference information will be used to support the City of Jacksonville’s procurement of professional design services for the final design and construction budget planning.
“Groundwork Jacksonville continues to be a valuable partner for the City of Jacksonville in leading the design of the Emerald Trail and McCoys Creek and Hogans Creek restoration,” said Mayor Lenny Curry. Groundwork has also been extremely effective at securing millions in State, Federal and private funds to help bring our collective vision of a more connected, resilient community to life.”
As part of the process, Groundwork will convene a Hogans Creek Task force representing various stakeholders to provide input throughout the design. “Hogans Creek is a challenging design project because of land constraints, existing infrastructure and varied constituencies,” says Ehas. “Groundwork is committed to working collaboratively to develop the best approach for both stakeholders and the environment.”
Springfield Preservation and Revitalization Council (SPAR) Executive Director Kelly Rich says, “SPAR is thankful for Groundwork Jacksonville’s inclusive approach by welcoming the neighborhood’s input. SPAR and all of the Springfield residents look forward to working alongside the stakeholders to make Hogans Creek the beautiful amenity we know it can be.”
Earlier this month Groundwork was awarded a $718,809 grant from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s (DEO) Rebuild Florida General Planning Support Program for a separate, but complementary project. The grant will enable Groundwork to create an ecologically based watershed restoration and management plan for the McCoys Creek and Hogans Creek watersheds. DEO is the Governor-designated state authority responsible for administering all U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) long-term recovery funds awarded to the State. Groundwork was one of 37 recipients across Florida to share in $20 million in resiliency planning funds.
About Hogans Creek
Hogans Creek is a 2.6 miles tidal and freshwater creek that begins in the Brentwood neighborhood North of UF Health and flows south through Springfield, the Cathedral District and Historic Eastside before emptying into the St. Johns River at the Shipyards. It is part of the Emerald Trail, a public-private partnership between the City of Jacksonville and Groundwork.