By Bryan Boggiano
After escaping the 2022 hurricane season unscathed, Coral Springs Improvement District (CSID) is not taking any chances in the future.
CSID will undertake a multi-phased project to clear canal rights of way of large trees to reduce the flooding risk posed by hurricanes and severe weather.
The canal rights of way are defined as the canals themselves and the corridors immediately surrounding the water bodies.
“This proactive project keeps residents’ safety a top priority,” said Michael Cobelo, CSID senior communications manager. “Not carrying out this project can exacerbate flood risks for those who depend on CSID services.”
He said street flooding poses a risk to drivers and pedestrians, especially those who venture out during a tropical system’s impacts, which is already dangerous. He notes that the danger to life and property increases when downed powerlines exist.
Canal obstruction from fallen trees, he said, also poses dangers to first responders and utility workers.
CSID was last tested in Sept. 2017, when Hurricane Irma passed roughly 100 miles to the city’s west. Near-hurricane-force winds caused multiple trees to fall into canals and canal corridors. According to CSID, most of these 4,000 cubic yards of vegetative debris did not fall into major canals.
The district was able to process all of the debris at its facility.
Despite this, CSID notes there are continued risks. They report a significant number of large trees in rights of way, which could fall into canals. They warn if this does happen, canals will become obstructed, and flooding will occur.
To reduce those risks, CSID will undertake a phased approach to clear out canals.
In April, CSID will begin work in the northern zone. This includes places east of Coral Springs Drive and north of Ramblewood Drive. Work will commence in the south, east, and west sections.
Work will begin in the south zone in July, followed by the east in October and the west in Jan. 2024. They estimate to spend three months in each zone and complete the project by April 2024.
CSID will manage the project, while engineering firm Globaltech will oversee it.
The project will take place Monday through Friday between 8 a.m., and 5 p.m. Crews will work from barges on canals with chainsaws and large equipment, so residents should expect noise.
They note residents should expect service disruptions during hours of operation. They note irrigation systems will need to be off during construction.
Despite the noise and service disruptions, Cobelo reiterated the importance of ensuring residents’ safety.
“We need to be proactive in making sure we can help residents before, during, and after an emergency,” he said.
- A University of Florida journalism graduate, Bryan is pursuing his masters in geosciences at Florida International University. He has a strong interest in weather, entertainment, and journalism.
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