Announcements and property closures

Following is a list of properties that are closed or have portions closed due to ongoing land management activities. We regret the temporary inconvenience, but the closures are necessary for public safety. If you have concerns or comments about any of these activities, please contact us at landmgmt@sjrwmd.com or 386-329-4404.

Bayard Conservation Area

Posted 8-23-2018

Due to the extension of the First Coast Expressway, FDOT has taken ownership of the State Road (SR) 16 road frontage of Bayard Conservation Area, including both of the current parking areas off of SR 16. SJRWMD will be constructing a new parking lot just interior of the current eastern parking lot and the new parking area will be large enough to accommodate both regular vehicular parking as well as horse trailers. FDOT assures us that at no time during the construction of the Expressway and the new Shands Bridge, will public access to Bayard be impacted.

Fellsmere Water Management Area

During the first week of June 2019, the district submitted Fellsmere Water Management Area boat ramp site development information to the city of Fellsmere. District staff anticipate completing the city of Fellsmere site development approval process in the near future. The district submitted a funding application to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for a fiscal year 2019–2020 Florida Boating Improvement Program (FBIP) grant. FBIP ranking results will be announced at the end of June 2019. The contract for the improvement of the Fellsmere Water Management Area boat ramp has been advertised.  The onsite pre-bid meeting was held on June 4, 2019.  Bids are due June 20, 2019, with an anticipated construction award at the district’s July Governing Board meeting. Based on the ranking results of the FBIP grant, construction of the Fellsmere Water Management Area boat ramp is anticipated to commence in late summer/early fall 2019. See map at right, where the yellow star indicates the approximate location of proposed boat ramp.

Non-motorized public recreational access is currently available to the 4,189-acre Fellsmere Area 1 Public Small Game Hunting Area portion of Fellsmere Water Management Area.

The process to build the Headwaters Lake boat ramp at the Fellsmere Water Management Area (FWMA) took another step forward after the St. Johns River Water Management District’s Governing Board awarded a construction contract for the ramp and other visitor amenities on Tuesday, July 9, 2019. This comes following the award of a 50 percent funding match for the $842,000 project from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). The project includes construction of an improved parking area, restrooms and a floating dock along with the boat ramp. Construction of the boat ramps is anticipated to be complete by the end of 2019. Click to view map with approximate location of proposed boat ramp. Non-motorized public recreational access is currently available to the 4,189-acre Fellsmere Area 1 Public Small Game Hunting Area portion of Fellsmere Water Management Area.

Map of the Fellsmere Water Management Area with boat ramp location

Lake Apopka North Shore

Posted on 9-16-2019

The Lake Apopka Loop Trail repairs project is located in Flood Zone AE. Per 44 CFR Part 9.12, prior to funding obligation we are required to post a final public notice for projects that will take place within a floodplain and/or wetland. The attached Final Public Notice must be posted in a public location, e.g. the project location, and on the Applicant’s website, for a minimum of 15 calendar days prior to funding obligation to allow for public involvement and comments on the effects of the project on the community.

Posted 7-19-2019

Portions of the Lake Apopka Loop Trail may have detours as work is performed to reconstruct about 4.4 miles of levee. The entire levee improvement project spans the east side of the Lake Apopka North Shore, between Magnolia Park and Laughlin Road, and will increase the levee’s elevation by about 18 inches. During construction, any detours will be posted on site.

Seminole Ranch Conservation Area

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has requested a road closure within the Salt Lake WMA portion of Seminole Ranch Conservation Area. Switchgrass Road will be closed to vehicular traffic effective January 29, 2019 and remain closed until conditions dry out enough to allow for the repair of two failing culverts. An updated timeline will be provided when available. The closure is likely to last through the spring and upcoming turkey season. Switchgrass Road will be closed from the intersection of Boar Road south to it’s terminus.”

Map of Janualry 2019 road closure at Seminole Ranch Conservation Area

Thomas Creek Conservation Area

Posted 3-24-2017

Multiple areas within Thomas Creek Conservation Area will have forestry operations occurring over the next year (see map). When work is underway, please be careful with the logging trucks entering and exiting the property. This work could impact hunting within the Wildlife Management Area and the White trail. The contract will be complete, weather permitting.

Map of timber operations in 2018 at Thomas Creek Conservation Area

Twelve-Mile Swamp Conservation Area

Posted 1-14-2019

The trailhead at this property (440 International Golf Parkway, St. Augustine) will be closed beginning Jan. 15, 2019, for the public’s safety. Rayonier, who holds a timber lease from the district through 2025 on the property, will conduct the timber sale.

Map of January 2019 timber operations at Twelve Mile Swamp Conservation Area