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Conservation Park, Panama City Beach, FL
CONSERVATION PARK
Grand Opening
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CONSERVATION PARK Grand Opening

Grand Opening Information

Thursday, October 27 4:00 PM-6:00 PM

Our Community Business Leaders, our Civic Leaders. Media* and Partners are invited to a special reception and ribbon cutting. The photo opportunity and ribbon cutting officially opening the park will occur at 4:30 PM with refreshments prior and following. We want you to enjoy this park that will be important to you and our visiting guests. Consider this your invitation.

Saturday, October 29 8:00AM-Dusk

Grand Opening Fun Day at the Conservation Park. Everyone is invited to come out for a fun day. A run will start at 8:00 AM (more details to be announced) and hamburgers and hotdogs will be served from 12 NOON - 2:00 PM. Steve's Bike Shop will be giving away a bike and trails will be open for your walking, running and biking pleasure. Send your entire staff, family and invite everyone you know.

If you want to help sponsor a portion of the Grand Opening, of this new City Park, let us know at 850 630 6741. More information is coming soon but we wanted you to have this initial information to SAVE THE DATES!



Gayle's Trails Map



Introduction

The desire to protect and balance our natural resources has been a driving force behind the establishment of Conservation Park (Park). The West Bay Ecosystem, is being protected by the creation of this Park and the implementation of a beneficial use of the City of Panama City Beach's (City's) reclaimed water. The Park's forestry management practices will also lead to ecosystem restoration and habitat improvement for an area covering approximately 3,000 acres which is the equivalent to an area equal to twice the size of the City of Parker.

Pump Station

In early 2011, after nearly a decade of planning, designing, permitting and constructing, the City completely stopped discharging reclaimed water from the Wastewater Treatment Facility into West Bay. This redirection of water to Conservation Park will protect the water quality of the Bay while helping to restore the altered hydrology of the natural lands at the Park. The City and its residents take pride in knowing they're leading the way to a cleaner and healthier Bay.

A pump station, designed with the ability to pump up to 18,000,000 gallons of highly treated water per day, was constructed at the City's Wastewater Treatment Facility on the north end of Gulf Boulevard. The pump station includes two pool areas (wetwells) to collect water not used for irrigation in the City. Once collected in the pools, pumps send the water through a 3 foot diameter pipe to Conservation Park.

There are a total of six pumps at the pump station--2 small pumps and 4 large pumps. The small pumps are designed to operate when flow at the Wastewater Treatment Facility are low such as late at night. The larger pumps will be used during high flow times such as in the morning, during summer months, and holiday weekends. Each pump includes a motor at the top that drives a vertical turbine pump which extends down into one of the pools.

The pump station site is also the location of the Gulf Boulevard Trail Head which is part of the City's Gayle's Trails System. This area includes a public parking lot and trail signage and information for Trail users accessing the Trail System from this location.

Transmission Main Pipe

A 3 ft (36 in) diameter Transmission Main pipe carries the reclaimed water from the City's Reclaimed Water Pump Station five miles to Conservation Park. The installation of this pipe included bends and valves weighing more than 7000 pounds each. The Transmission Main route was completed with a paved trail on top of the pipe. This trail is part of the City's Gayle's Trails System with connections to the Highway 79 Trail, Frank Brown Park Trail, and Gulf Boulevard Trail Head. The base material beneath portions of the asphalt is crushed concrete recycled and reused from the former Fiesta Motel on Panama City Beach.

Public Building

A 4,400 square foot building was constructed at the southeast corner of the Park. This building functions as a shelter for Park users and provides public restroom facilities. The building also provides a useful space for City staff and equipment needed to keep the Park maintained for all residents and tourists. The 3 foot diameter Reclaimed Water Transmission Main divides into four different, smaller pipes inside the building. The manifold of the 3 foot diameter Reclaimed Water Transmission Main is located in a concrete pit inside the southwest corner of the building and divides the flow of reclaimed water into one of four areas in the Park. Each of the four pipes are color coded to coincide with a specific area in the Park and each area receives water on a rotation to rehydrate the wetland during different times of the year. The building includes three garage work areas and employee offices used to maintain and operate equipment necessary to properly run and maintain the Park. A chemical storage tank used as a final treatment method for the reclaimed water and a back-up power generator for the building are also located on the site.

Wetland Rehydration

There are 14 different discharge structures strategically placed around the Park to help distribute and rehydrate the wetlands on site. The hydrology of the site was altered during silviculture activities when the vegetation was changed and a large ditch dredged down the center of the Park site. Flow to the different discharge structures is rotated from the Control Building during different growing seasons during the year. Reuse water from the Control Building is conveyed through one of four pipe systems ranging in pipe size from 15 to 30 inches. The pipes follow along trails in the Park and terminate at one of the discharge structures.