Groundwork Jacksonville has been awarded a $294,000 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation for the preliminary design of the Hogans Creek restoration project, which is designed to reduce flooding, improve water quality, restore habitat and improve recreational opportunities in the area.
Hogans Creek — a 2.6 mile long tidal and freshwater creek that starts in the Brentwood neighborhood north of UF Health and flows south to the St. Johns River — has suffered from years of pollution and neglect and frequently floods nearby Klutho Park and adjacent streets during heavy rains.
“The NFWF grant, combined with $100,000 from the Jacksonville Environmental Protection Board approved last week and generous private donations we’ve received, enables us to move forward with the project while we secure the $175,500 needed to close the gap,” Ehas said.
The nonprofit will now look to hire a creek expert to develop a master concept plan, 30% construction plans and a cost-benefit analysis, as the nonprofit did with the McCoys Creek restoration project, which is scheduled to begin later this year.
“Groundwork Jacksonville continues to be a valuable partner for the city of Jacksonville in leading the design of the Emerald Trail and McCoys Creek and Hogans Creek restoration,” Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said. “Groundwork has also been extremely effective at securing millions in State, Federal and private funds to help bring our collective vision of a more connected, resilient community to life.”
As part of the design process, Groundwork Jacksonville will assemble a Hogans Creek task force to provide input.
“Hogans Creek is a challenging design project because of land constraints, existing infrastructure and varied constituencies,” said Ehas. “Groundwork is committed to working collaboratively to develop the best approach for both stakeholders and the environment.”
Hogans Creek is part of the Emerald Trail — another ongoing project being made possible by a public-private partnership between the city and Groundwork Jacksonville. The planned 30-mile urban trail and park system will connect 14 historic urban neighborhoods to downtown, the St. Johns River, McCoys Creek and Hogans Creek.
Earlier this month, Groundwork Jacksonville received a $718,809 grant from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity to create an ecologically based watershed restoration and management plan for the McCoys Creek and Hogans Creek watersheds.