Artificial Reef Program Closer to Reef Construction

By: Drew Steele Email
By: Drew Steele Email

The Artificial Reef Program has constructed twenty-eight hundred reefs across the gulf. Now two new reef projects in the works are more unique than usual because of what's being used and the size.

"The material is excellent for what we do. As a matter of fact it's a superior grade of concrete that has a high aggregate content of limestone. And limestone is a base material that all marine critters love to attach to" said Artificial Reef Program Manager Scott Henson.

The reef program received the massive concrete from Eglin Air Force Base where it was used for projectile testing.

"At first we were looking at nine million pounds of material and it's increased ever since. And the more testing they do out at Eglin Airforce base the more material they have" said Henson.

Organizers are waiting for one last permit from the army marine corps of engineers.

"The folks over at the corps sound pretty positive and some of the commenting agencies have already been contacted saying, 'hey, this looks like a perfect fit between the material and the location where it's going'" said Henson.

They also need the money to pay for the cost of hauling the reefs to the two sites.
"Once we get it through the corps we're looking at funding sources and that's the most difficult part. There's just really not a lot of extra money around these days” said Henson.
Henson says he hopes Eglin officials will continue to donate material for future reef projects.


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