The Lake Jackson Ecopassage Advisory Group
On November 4th, 2002, at the request of Leon County, the Lake Jackson Ecopassage Project Advisory Group was formed. This group consists of biologists and engineers that meet regularly in order to discuss ecological and engineering challenges caused by U.S. Highway 27 where it bisects Lake Jackson, FL. The advisory group is working closely with Leon County and the Florida Department of Transportation to create a permanent ecopassage along highway 27.
The advisory group consists of the following individuals
Dr. Matthew Aresco, Lake Jackson Ecopassage Alliance / Nokuse Plantation
Joshua Boan, Florida Department of Transportation (Environmental Management Office)
David Cook, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Judith Dougherty, Leon County Board of County Commissioners
Larry Nall, Florida Department of Environmental Protection (Coastal and Aquatic Managed Areas)
Dr. Dale Jackson, Florida Natural Areas Inventory
Karen Kebart, Northwest Florida Water Management District
Jack Kostrzewa, Tallahassee Leon County Planning Department - MPO
Howard Lovett, Florida Department of Transportation, District 3
David O'Neill, Paynes Prairie Wildlife Coalition
Former members of the advisory group: Jamie Barichivich (USGS), Bruce Barrett (Leon County MPO), Clay Carithers (Leon County), Alex Cordero (DEP), Tyler Macmillan (NWFWMD), Dr. Eric Walters (FSU), David Ziegler (FDOT)
Meeting 1 - 21 November 2002
LeRoy Collins Public Library
The advisory group reached unanimous
consensus that an ecopassage needs to be built along US Highway 27 as soon as
based upon the 33 months of data that was presented by lead biologist Matt Aresco. The Florida Department of Transportation will
work in collaboration with Leon County and the rest of the agencies represented on the advisory group to initiate a design analysis that
will examine engineering and biological considerations. The recommendation of the advisory group was to build an ecopassage using
the design prototype that was developed for the Paynes Prairie Ecopassage in conjunction with a series of culverts that will need to
be installed under US Highway 27.
Attendees: Paula Allen (DEP), Matthew Aresco (FSU), Jamie Barichivich (USGS), Bruce Barrett (MPO), Clay Carithers (Leon County), Jennifer Carver (MPO), David Cook (FFWCC), Judith Dougherty (Leon County), Howard Lovett (FDOT), Tyler Macmillan (NWFWMD), David O'Neill (PPWC), Eric Walters (FSU), David Ziegler (FDOT).
Meeting 2 - 11 February 2003
Florida Department of Transportation, Environmental Management Office
The Advisory Group met with officials from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). The FDOT would like an expeditious solution to the wildlife mortality along US Highway 27. They wanted to make sure that Leon County and the Advisory Group understood the urgency of the situation. It was also indicated to the group that any solution must encompass all types of wildlife meaning that the proposed ecopassage should not target any specific taxonomic groups. Members of the Advisory Group concurred with this mandate and assured the FDOT that any proposed design would need to account for all wildlife that are impacted by highway 27 where it bisects Lake Jackson. Leon County was directed to move forward with plans to use the $100,000 USD that has been earmarked by the FDOT for a feasibility study. The Advisory Group will be providing recommendations to the project manager, Jack Kostrzewa.
Attendees: Matthew Aresco (FSU), Larry Barfield (FDOT), Tommy Barfield (FDOT), Bruce Barrett (MPO), Josh Boan (FDOT), Clay Carithers (Leon County), David Cook (FFWCC), Alex Cordero (DEP), Judith Dougherty (Leon County), George Hadley (FHWA), Leroy Irwin (FDOT), Jack Kostrzewa (MPO), Tyler Macmillan (NWFWMD), Gene Martin (FDOT), Nahir Mendoza (FHWA), David O'Neill (PPWC), Rand Richardson (FHWA), John Smith (FDOT), Eric Walters (FSU), David Ziegler (FDOT).
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