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Collier County dredging project (WINK News)

Collier County beach dredging project begins Thursday

Your safety is the reason a multi-million dollar beach and bay dredging begins Thursday morning.

You will see construction getting under way in three different locations including Caxambas Pass, Turkey Bay, and Wiggins Pass.

The big thing the county is hoping to fix is the eroding sand. Doing so strengthens our beaches and makes Southwest Florida better prepared for major storms.

The county plans to accomplish this by dredging up sand from Wiggins Pass and pumping it up two miles north toward Barefoot Beach.

Crews spent the last two weeks moving equipment to Wiggins Pass to prepare for the work that is starting Thursday.

It’s going to cost the county $2.5-million, which is funded by tourist development taxes and property owners near the Vanderbilt water way.

Also included in the project is a plan to dredge Caxambas Beach to help with erosion on South Marco Beach.

The county’s hoping to knock all of this out before summer.

We spoke with visitors who support the project as long as it keeps them coming back.

“People are here for the beaches,” said Pete Patitstas, who is visiting Southwest Florida. “Whatever it takes to keep that maintained and serving the tourist base that comes down here.”

If you plan to boat near Wiggins Pass in the coming months, be aware of delays. The project manager says they will have to work and and then move the big dredging boats for anyone trying to pass through the area.

Reporter:Janae Muchmore
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