Feasibility Study:
Southwest Florida Feasibility Study

The Comprehensive Review Study for the Central & Southern Florida (C&SF) Project, known as the Restudy, has important implications for southwest Florida. Among its recommendations to Congress in July 1999, the Restudy recommended a Feasibility Study to identify southwest Florida water resources conditions and to develop potential solutions to any problems that may be identified.

Scope of the Study

The Southwest Florida Study is being conducted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the South Florida Water Management District. The study area includes all of Lee County, most of Collier and Hendry Counties, and portions of Charlotte, Glades, and Monroe Counties. It encompasses approximately 4,300 square miles and includes two major drainage basins. The northern boundary corresponds to the drainage divide of the Caloosahatchee River, which is also the SFWMD/SWFWMD jurisdictional boundary in Charlotte County. The eastern boundary delineates the divide between the Big Cypress Swamp and the Everglades system.

The Restudy investigated operational and structural changes to the C&SF Project In spite of the efforts of the Restudy, Southwest Florida still needs a comprehensive look at all the water issues it faces, not only those related to the C&SF Project.

Primary water quality and hydrologic data do not exist for much of the region. This lack of primary information, assessments and monitoring data is a fundamental gap for this region of the state and greatly hinders its long-term water resources management opportunities.

The Southwest Florida Study is an important first step and offers the opportunity to use U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and South Florida Water Management District resources to plan for proper infrastructure before or as development occurs, not after. The Southwest Florida Study will develop a water resources plan for the entire Southwest Florida area. The Study will provide for ecosystem and marine/estuary restoration and protection, environmental quality, flood protection, water supply and other water-related purposes.

It will provide a framework to address the health of aquatic ecosystems; water flows; water supply; wildlife, biological diversity and natural habitat; the region's economic viability; and property rights. The study would also investigate non-structural alternatives; maximize regional benefits through multi-purpose land use; ensure consistency with local planning initiatives; improve water quality; and protect Big Cypress National Preserve.

The Southwest Florida Study will be accomplished using a two-phase study process. The first phase, study scoping, is at full Federal expense and quickly identifies problems and opportunities and potential solutions in an area. This phase will be completed in July 2000.

The second phase, feasibility, will be conducted in partnership with the South Florida Water Management District and will develop the alternative solutions in more detail so that a viable plan can be authorized and funded by Congress.

Currently, an initial series of meetings are being held with stakeholder focus groups and governmental agencies to discuss the study process, problems and opportunities, and to gather existing technical data.

Download the SWFFS FR/DEIS Scoping Letter and Study Map

The Jacksonville District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is gathering additional information to help refine issues and concerns that will be addressed in an integrated Feasibility Report/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (FR/DEIS) for the Southwest Florida Feasibility Study/Watershed Plan (SWFFS).

Download Study Documents

12 Mar 2009 - SWFFS FR/DEIS Scoping Letter
and Study Area Map

Further information on the project may be obtained by contacting:

David Bauman, USACE

2 Jun 2006 - Southwest Florida Feasibility Study Final
Conceptual Ecological Models (CEM)


Study Contacts:

Stephen A. Baisden, PE, PMP
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Janet Starnes
South Florida Water Management District