City Council Meeting
City of DeBary
Subject: I-4 Ultimate Project at St. Johns River Bridge/Army Corp of Engineers/DeBary Bayou
From: Ron McLemore, City Manager
Meeting/Hearing Date: November 15, 2017
( ) Ordinance
( ) Resolution
( ) Supporting Documents/Contracts
City Manager requesting the City Council to determine if it desires to send the Army Corps of Engineers and FDOT the attached letter of support for certain improvements to be included in the Ultimate Interstate 4 Retrofit Project.
This request is needed at this time for the City Council to decide if it wants to approve request from local citizen in support of the cleanup of the DeBary Bayou during the construction of the Ultimate I-4 retrofit project.
The Florida Department of Transportation, in conjunction with the Federal Department of Transportation, is preparing a plan to expand traffic capacity of I-4 Corridor from the St. Johns Bridge to Exit 108, including improvements to the I-4 bridge over the St. Johns River.
A number of local citizens committed to improving the water quality of the DeBary Bayou believe that the current configuration of the bridge is the cause of the decline in the DeBary Bayou because the configuration utilized to construct the bridge severely constricted the water flow in and out of the Bayou after it was built.
In response, these citizens are requesting that the Army Corps of Engineers place two conditions in the permit they will issue for construction of the I-4 improvement project as follows:
1. Widening of the Bayou entrance to its original (1964) 500-foot width instead of the current 30-foot opening; and
2. Place culverts under I-4 to restore water flow.
In contradiction to the request of the citizen, in April 2012, a study performed by the US Army Corps of Engineers concluded that the DeBary Bayou was not experiencing accelerated sedimentation, and that the existing I-4 bridge at DeBary Bayou was not adversely impacting water quality, the ecosystem and navigation within the Bayou.
In light of the conflicting perspectives in this issue, I requested the City’s consulting engineer, David Hamstra, to review the matter with the various agencies, which resulted in the following conclusion:
“Although letters supporting these improvements would not do any harm, I would recommend that the City understand that the potential for the Army Corps of Engineers and or FDOT changing their positions on the design concept currently approved, is highly unlikely since the science does not appear to support such change.”
There are no cost impacts related to this request.
It is recommended that the Council provide staff with its direction regarding sending the attached letter to the Army Corps of Engineers.
a.) Draft letter to ACOE
b.) Report from David Hamstra
c.) Request letter from Joe Alemany to City Council
d.) Response letter from ACOE to Joe Alemany
City Council Action:
( ) Approved As Recommended
( ) Approved With Modification
( ) Disapproved
( ) Continued Date:
( ) Other