Floridian Theatrum Machinarum
An über hydromechanical complex is set to rise in the Everglades when “engineers next month will begin building one of the world's largest manmade reservoirs - the size of a small city - as efforts continue to restore natural water flow to the Everglades,” the Associated Press via Wired News reports.
The “flagship” project of a multi-decade, multi-billion dollar wetland restoration initiative, this staggeringly huge theatrum machinarum, “roughly 25 square miles in area, is set for completion in 2010. It will hold 62 billion gallons of water, equivalent to about 5.1 million residential swimming pools, and will be seven miles across at its widest point.”
It's so vast, in fact, that it will lower water levels at the much, much bigger Lake Okeechobee. And “when you stand on one side of this reservoir, you will not see the other side.”
Moreover, “most reservoirs are built amid mountains and valleys or where a natural water source feeds the pool. In this case, 30 million tons of earth will be dug from flat land and surrounded by a 26-foot high, 21-mile long levee, making it larger than any other reservoir not connected to a natural source.”
If you are as thoroughly fascinated in wetlands and wetland restorations as we are, make sure you stop by the South Florida Water Management District. To simultaneously satisfy your inner civil engineer and verify that the whole thing isn't merely Michael Heizer recreating Tenochtitlan, you can download all manner of plans and reports at Acceler8. But make sure you read the article though.
Notes on Some Selections from the Visual Images Database of the Mississippi Valley Division of the US Army Corps of Engineers