|Published:||Sep 23, 2012 10:41 AM EDT|
|Updated:||Sep 24, 2012 5:40 AM EDT|
COLLIER COUNTY-Fla.-"Right now the bottom off Collier County is bare sand and there is no marine life so once the reefs come we will get variety of fish like in the Keys- and coral- beautiful color and it is important ecologically, said Dr. Heyward Mathews Marine Consultant.
Plans call for the reefs to be constructed 10 to 25 miles off Marco Island and Collier County. They would look similar to artifical reefs in Pinellas County.
Mathews said a 20-25 million dollar boost in tourism in one of the benefits. "We can tailor the reef for certain species and have one type attract grouper and snapper and another reef attract another type of fish. We are designing it to fit the needs of fisherman and divers."
Collier County and Marco Island applied for one a half million dollars in BP grants in the wake of the deepwater horizon oil spill.
The Artifical Reef Project Fundraising Chairman, Peter Flood, said "Our goal is not to incur money on behalf of the governments and the citizens. We want to do this all through grants and/or private funding."
The County and the city will find out if they won the grants in January. If all goes as planned, construction would start in six months.