Project Description

Drone overall rendering.

Drone Overall Rendering

  1. Current trailhead and Seminole Village
  2. Existing quarry lake
  3. Tamiami Trail (US-41)
  4. Abandoned roadbed, location of new parking lot
  5. Canal
  6. Hardwood Hammock
  7. Marl Prairie
  8. Bald Cypress Swamp
Canopy walkway rising up into cypress forest.

Canopy walkway rising up into cypress forest.

At 85,000 acres, the Fakahatchee Strand Preserve is Florida’s largest and least developed park. The park is made up of diverse, yet interconnected ecosystems including Bald Cypress Swamps, Marl Prairies, Cypress Domes, Hardwood Hammocks, and Salt Marshes.

Our guiding principal of minimal impact is manifested not only aesthetically in the finished project but also in the impact during construction.

20’ high canopy walkway weaving through cypress forest.

20’ high canopy walkway weaving through cypress forest.

Where possible we eliminate mass, using columns instead of walls. Materials such as steel are used instead of concrete, and lateral forces are handled with diagonal braces instead of massive elements.

Rolled steel bridge over canal with Interpretive Pavilion in the distance.

Rolled steel bridge over canal with Interpretive Pavilion in the distance.

Where possible we eliminate mass, using columns instead of walls. Materials such as steel are used instead of concrete, and lateral forces are handled with diagonal braces instead of massive elements.

Rolled steel bridge over canal with Interpretive Pavilion in the distance.

Rolled steel bridge over canal with Interpretive Pavilion in the distance.

Precast concrete panels and beams are used only at the floor of the interpretive pavilion as protective strategies against naturally occurring fires in the area. All structures will be supported by helical pilings driven by small machines that will do little damage to the preserves.  The first phase of the improvements is expected to be completed in 2021.

Interpretive Pavilion with rooftop solar panel array.

Interpretive Pavilion with rooftop solar panel array.

Metal boardwalk meandering through prairie grass.

Metal boardwalk meandering through prairie grass.

Our enhancements to the State Park include:  Interpretive Pavilion, Suspended Pedestrian Bridge, boardwalk through the prairie grasses, Lake Overlook Pavilion, Pedestrian bridges over “gator slides” and a Cypress Canopy Walk.

Design Award

AIA Florida Southwest logo

Honor Award for Unbuilt Design Excellence – 2016

“This is a very important project in an extremely fragile environment, yet the project is innovative, educational and light on the land. The variety of experiences will make it informative, educational and fun to visit. Walkways have an interesting structure that will almost disappear into the natural environment.” – Jury Comment

Overlook Pavilion and fishing area

Overlook Pavilion and fishing area.

Gallery