Tag Archives: South Florida reservoirs

Helicopter Ride Over the Caloosahatchee’s C-43 Reservoir

The recent Governing Board meeting  of the South Florida Water Management District was held on March 10, 2022, on beautiful Sanibel Island, in Lee County. Prior to the meeting, the board was given a tour of the C-43 Reservoir located in LaBelle, in Hendry County, which is on the way and where the giant reservoir is being constructed.

The C-43 Reservoir is also known as the “Caloosahatchee Reservoir,” as it will help manage water from the river’s basin and from Lake Okeechobee. The reservoir’s construction began in 2015; it will be over twice as large as the recently completed St Lucie Reservoir, or C-44 Reservoir, in Martin County. The Caloosahatchee is a much larger system!

For fun, let’s compare….

~The C-44 Reservoir covers 3000 acres; the C-43 Reservoir covers 10,500 acres

~The C-44 Reservoir stores 50,600 acre-feet of water; the C-43 Reservoir will hold 170,000 acre-feet of water

~The C-44 Reservoir is about 15 feet deep; the C-43’s depth will range from 15 to 25 feet

~Looking across the C-44 Reservoir is about three miles; the C-43 is is approximately six miles!

These reservoirs, along with the EAA Reservoir, once complete, will give greater flexibility to the Everglade’s system in many capacities and help offset damaging discharges and algae blooms from Lake Okeechobee.

Enough talk. Let’s go!

-Jared Ross of welcomes us-On the ground, we get a safety lesson and review a diagram of the project-Pre-helicopter driving tour, with John, SFWMD, our guide  

-Atop the dam-Workers at a giant culvert I had seen the C-43 before, at its major groundbreaking in 2019. It was exciting to see it almost three years later and note the progress that has been accomplished thus far. Today, I will share my photos and videos so you too can see. It is hard to grasp it all as it is so sprawling, but from the air you will get a good idea.

-With Jennifer Reynolds, Ecosystem Restoration SFMWD, and Jennifer Smith, Chief of Staff, SFWMD. My helicopter mates!-Time to fly-Following diagram below, going around the reservoir counter-clockwise, starting middle bottom above my thumb-Townsend Canal allows water to be delivered from Calosahatee to reservoir. Water supply to surrounding agricultural fields will be also met. 

 

-Perimeter Canal, further away and closer up -James our pilot-Back on the ground, a follow up. Wow, impressive! Let’s get it done! I will write more about the C-43 in the future, but today I just wanted you to have an opportunity to see it by air!