Canal Restoration

Many canals do not meet the State’s minimum water quality criteria and are a potential source of nutrients and other contaminants to nearshore waters designated as Outstanding Florida Waters. Implementation of wastewater treatment and stormwater management systems will reduce loadings to the canals but will not completely eliminate the impaired water quality conditions. A Canal Management Master Plan is needed to develop a prioritization for canal restoration and develop feasible strategies to improve the water quality in the artificial canals in the Florida Keys. The county is developing the Master Plan and is performing extensive fieldwork to better understand the water quality conditions of every canal in the County. This includes the canals in the municipalities.

The Monroe County BOCC has also approved moving forward with a series of canal restoration demonstration projects. The results will be used to further define restoration costs and for information in future grant applications to state and federal sources.

The Canal Advisory Committee meetings are noticed in the Florida Administrative Register (FAR). Access the FAR notices.

FIU Water Quality Monitoring Project for Demonstration of Canal Remediation Methods

Final Report for the Demonstration of Canal Remediation Methods - May 2018

Data from FIU's water quality monitoring program of the demonstration canals in unincorporated Monroe County and the Village of Islamorada. View the data

Data from FIU's seagrass monitoring program of the demonstration canals in unincorporated Monroe County and the Village of Islamorada. View the data

Homeowner Questionnaire on Canals

In November 2012, Monroe County, in association with AMEC, was awarded an EPA grant to complete a Canal Management Master Plan for the entire Keys. The effort is underway and is scheduled for completion by September 2013.

The management plan will prioritize the water quality problems in all of the Keys canals and provide recommendations for appropriate remedial measures for each canal. The Master Plan will be a tool for all Keys managers to assist in planning and budgeting for canal water quality improvements. You can assist in the effort by completing the Homeowner Questionnaire.

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