Story Tools

Date of Issue: August 18, 2010

Grant to fund stormwater work

Major stormwater improvements are planned for north Bradenton Beach this fall with funding, in part, to come from a Southwest Florida Water Management District grant.

“We have a multi-year agreement with Bradenton Beach for the project,” said Robyn Felix of Swiftmud. “In fiscal year 2010, we provided $100,000 in matching funds and the city is currently in design and permitting for phases one and two of the project.”

Swiftmud is working with the city to help fund five Bradenton Beach stormwater projects over a three-year period.

Additionally, the city has some money in its capital improvement projects reserves for stormwater work.

“We’re getting ready to start in October,” public works director Tom Woodard said of the projects. “People are going to start seeing things happening stormwater-wise in north city.”

“It’s really needed up there,” he added.

The initial work will take place “along both Avenues A and B along 25th Street and 22nd Street respectively,” said Matt Morris of LTA Engineers, the Bradenton firm working with the city on the project design.

“The main problems in these areas are localized flooding, as well as pollutant discharge into the bay,” Morris said. “The remedy … is to increase the amount of storage for stormwater, which will both serve to reduce flooding as well as allow pollutants time to settle out of the system before water is discharged to the bay.”

Morris said the work will take place in the city rights of way and involves adding bio-swales, new inlets and new pipes, as well as repairing and modifying existing drainage features.

“The plants within the swales help to treat the stormwater by removing nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous, which are significant problems in the bay,” Morris said. “In addition, it makes the swales look a little nicer than just a hole in the ground.”

For the Avenue B Basin, LTA also is proposing that two new underground cisterns be installed.

 The city and LTA will present details of the projects during an open house scheduled for 5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 23, at city hall, 107 Gulf Drive N.

Other sites of concern in the city include Bay Drive South from Third Street South to Fifth Street South, First Street North to Bridge Street and Bay Drive North between 12th Street North and 10th Street North.

The total estimate for completing all the stormwater projects would be about $3 million, which is why the city is tackling the improvements in phases.

City building official Steve Gilbert has said the stormwater improvements should help the city’s score in the federal flood prevention program.

On the calendar

Bradenton Beach officials, LTA Engineers and Southwest Florida Water Management District will hold a public forum at 5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 23, on stormwater improvements in the city.

The meeting will take place at city hall, 107 Gulf Drive N.

“We are proposing that the public meeting not be a group presentation, but rather have four to five tables set up with plans, pictures, etcetera, and have one of the team members at each table,” said Matt Morris of LTA. “Residents would have an opportunity to go to a table and look at plans up-close and engage in some one-on-one dialogue with us to address questions or concerns that they may have.”