Projections from the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact indicate that areas of the Florida Keys may experience sea level rise of 12 inches by 2030, and more than 30 inches by 2060. To communities that populate these islands, that level of increase poses a significant threat of inundation.
To enhance the resilience of its infrastructure, Monroe County instituted a pilot project in two communities—Twin Lakes in Key Largo and the Big Pine Key community of Sands—where streets are bordered by wetlands and canals and are already subject to frequent flooding during king tides and intense storms and precipitation events.
As a partner to the county, WSP performed a pilot study to assess the 20-year tidal record and 2015 event, and determine a target elevation for roadways and required drainage improvements to adapt to the new conditions.
The study outcomes informed our project solution, which includes elevating approximately 6,400 feet of specified roads and installing 2,000 feet of pre-treated and pressurized closed stormwater management systems. The drainage design consists of a gravity collection system with a pump station discharging into multiple injection wells. All runoff will be routed to the pump station using trunk lines along the main roads.
Additionally, the project involved reconstructing and signing pavement, and conducting property surveys to harmonize the elevated roads with adjacent properties. A retaining wall has also been proposed along the road, to provide safety for drivers and surge protection.
The design adheres to the county’s adopted methodology for adapting infrastructure for sea level rise.