Stormwater system for First Coast Expressway gets environmental OK

By Francine Frazier - Senior web producer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Another hurdle for the second phase of the First Coast Expressway has been cleared after the St. Johns River Water Management District issued an environmental resource permit for a stormwater management system.

The permit authorizes a system for a 31-mile segment of the highway from Blanding Boulevard in Clay County to I-95 in St. Johns County.

“This project is important to improve northeast Florida’s transportation system,” said SJRWMD Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “The district’s role is to ensure that the project’s design and construction complies with rules to protect water bodies and wetlands. This is a huge project that will create jobs, benefit the local economy, particularly in Clay County, and will ease the commute for thousands of Floridians, while protecting the environment.”

The First Coast Expressway, often called the Outer Beltway, is a new multi-lane limited access toll facility that will eventually connect Interstate 10 in western Duval County with Interstate 95 in northern St. Johns County.

The first segment, approximately 14 miles from I-10 in Duval County to Blanding Blvd in Clay County, is currently under construction. 

The project includes a major bridge across the St. Johns River and 75 stormwater ponds. The applicant has purchased mitigation credits to offset 504 acres of wetland impacts related to dredge and fill activities for construction of the road and associated stormwater management systems.

The permit was issued on March 8, 2018. Visit the district’s e-permitting webpage for more information. 

Copyright 2018 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.