Scenic Highway-98 is an important centerpiece to Franklin County and the surrounding area. It is the major thoroughfare that is responsible for allowing local and regional residents to access coastal Franklin County. It is also a hurricane evacuation route and the only way to access the Franklin County School.
The stretch between Eastpoint and Carrabelle is particularly important because of its ability to link the three major municipalities in the county, Apalachicola, Eastpoint, and Carrabelle. Keeping this roadway open is extremely important; if it could be done while enhancing the ecology of the area, even better.
This opportunity lends itself perfectly for a living shoreline solution. Living shorelines and green infrastructure are a hot topic these days. While employing nature based solutions is nothing new, a large-scale living shoreline in this area of Florida would be. Fringing marsh along the waters’ edge would help lock in and secure sediment. An offshore hard-bottom reef would help the establishment of the marsh community. While they may not preclude the need for harder armoring of the coastline (such as seawalls and riprap), a living shoreline would add another layer of protection to the roadway and allow for a more resilient community.
That’s where the project “Franklin-98” comes in. The Apalachee Regional Planning Council is conducting public outreach as part of an ongoing effort to increase community resilience between Eastpoint and Carrabelle. Two public meetings have been held (and well attended) thus far. There are two additional meetings scheduled, Tuesday, Jan. 14 and Tuesday, Feb. 4, at 6 p.m. at the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve.
For more information, contact Josh Adams at JAdams@thearpc.com or visit facebook.com/livingshore
Apalachee Regional Planning Council