Jacksonville, FL (September 24, 2018) – In looking to address community concerns regarding storm water issues around the District, Councilman Danny Becton along with leadership within the City’s Department of Public Work performed a field trip to gain a first-hand look at the areas of District 11 including Bayard, Gate Parkway, Deerwood and the Old Baymeadows golf course areas.
Joining Councilman Becton on these visits included Operations Director of Public Works, Bill Joyce, Public Works’ Director of Right of Way & Storm Water Maintenance, Steve Long, and the Planning and Development’s Planning Services Manager, Ellyn Cavin.
The group of city officials first visited Bayard off of Phillips Highway. The idea for city officials to visit this location was initially sparked by neighbors at the Bayard Workshop Meeting held on September 10th, 2018. During this visit, over 10 local residents joined the group and provided onsite guidance as to the first-hand knowledge of issues for which were raised.
During this meeting the residents pointed out major drainage issues for which they have been experiencing, including storm water runoff and flooding. They looked at the city’s storm water ditches within the neighborhood and along the FDOT’s right-of-way bordering I-295. New growth areas also garnered their attention as some recently built homes were pointed out, as to contributing to flooding of their adjacent neighbors. Many notes were taken and observations made that would be reviewed and addressed in the very near future.
After Bayard, Councilman Becton and the group visited the eastern side of Deerwood around Gate Parkway to look at the storm water drainage issues leaving Gum Swamp. Gum Swamp being a major water shed within Deerwood draining south and east, has recently come under concern that local streets and retention ponds within Deerwood were having flooding problem beyond normal. Meeting with several neighborhood board members assign to this specific issue, city drainage waterways from the east looked clear and flowing. It was recommended to the residents in further investigation of the JEA electrical power line easement running north and south of Deerwood to making sure that no obstructions were evident prior to these city’s areas.
In their final stop of the day, the Old Baymeadows Golf course new development was front and center. Under way by the D.R. Horton company, the building of 155 single family homes named Meadow Walk are being built adjacent to the Baymeadows community of Linkside. Fielding several calls and concerns from neighbors, Public Works took this time to make sure all was well during this initial construction phase. City Officials reviewed the storm water elevations and drainage plans along with a recently built beam making sure that the effects of these plans that nothing has been overlooked. Several observations and suggestions were made by the city officials including the lowering of the profile of the beam, installation of some temporary drainage pipes, the reshaping of some current storm water swells and finally, the reevaluation of sizing of drainage pipes in upcoming future construction.
All in all, the site visit was very productive and definitely allowed the city to take ownership for the concerns of area residents that are experiencing one of the largest “infield” developments to date, within the city of Jacksonville.