Canal C-18

Canal Bank Protection

LOCATION

Palm Beach Gardens, FL

Owner

South Florida Water Management District

Contractor

Southwest Greens of Florida

Size/Product

3,600 sq ft 
HydroTurf® Z 
Turf Type 1 – 75% Green / 25% Tan Blend 

Date completed

2017

 

Faced with the effects of man-made induced erosion in the beautiful Loxahatchee Slough, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) used HydroTurf® as a permanent and aesthetically-pleasing solution for wake protection on one of its highly-trafficked canals. 

Grassy Waters Preserves is known as a pristine remnant of the original Florida Everglades. The Loxahatchee Slough, located just a few miles from the PGA National Golf Club, is part of the preservation and is one of the three largest wilderness island refuges of undisturbed wetland in Palm Beach County. Water flows north by gravity through the C-18 Canal, a major vein of the slough, and into the Loxahatchee River. Because of its proximity to nearby communities, C-18 is a popular and highly trafficked scenic route for many. While it provides much enjoyment for the public, the wake from passing watercrafts has caused erosion damage to the canal banks. Such was the case at a particular site located adjacent to the major boat ramp loading area of Canal C-18. The constant wake action resulted in high erosive forces that led to the breakdown of the canal bank. 

In order to preserve the area and maintain the natural aesthetics of the waterway, SFWMD used HydroTurf as a long-term, permanent revetment solution. Because of the steep 1.5H:1V slopes, traditional hard armor solutions would have been difficult to both install and keep in place, and would have left ugly eyesores to the general public. The installation crew of Southwest Greens of Florida was able to quickly install HydroTurf using light-weight equipment. They were also able to achieve an underwater installation by extending the HydroTurf material down into the water and placing riprap at the toe for ballast. 

Shortly after completion, Hurricane Irma struck the state of Florida. The storm shifted directions at the last minute eliminating Palm Beach Gardens from the central path of the hurricane. However, the area still received Category 1 wind gusts and several inches of rain. Canals in the area filled to the max capacity. Inspections of Canal C-18 just a few days after the storm proved that HydroTurf had performed as designed. No maintenance was required. 

HydroTurf continues to provide natural-looking aesthetics in a highly visible area, eliminate routine and long-term maintenance, and minimize erosion along the canal bank.