Taking comments on a proposed project that would extend rehabilitation on the Herbert Hoover Dike surrounding Lake Okeechobee by approximately six miles in Palm Beach County is about to start in March, announced the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District.
The Corps will issue a draft environmental assessment on the proposed project by the middle of March, at which time comments will be accepted from the public.
In the project proposal, the Corps will seek to continue fixing the embankment of the dike between John Stretch Park and Belle Glade on the south side of the dike. Previous efforts to fix the embankment included installation of a seepage barrier known as a “cutoff wall” between Belle Glade and Port Mayaca from 2007-2012.
“This announcement is to let everyone know that we will be seeking input on this document when it is published in March,” said Eric Bush, chief of Jacksonville District’s Planning & Policy Division. “It is our hope that providing this advance notice will enable individuals who are aware of potential environmental considerations in this area of the dike to make well-informed comments during the review period.”
The Corps has made rehabilitation of the dike a high priority by investing over $500 million since 2007 in construction of the 22-mile cutoff wall and replacement of water control structures. The intent of the rehabilitation project is to reduce the likelihood of dike failure for people living or working near Lake Okeechobee.