6 questioins on flooding


Questions from Ray Jacobs to Ivan Fernandez, Planning County   (2/19/13): 

1.       What are the plans for getting the water from Brooker Creek at the Club House to Lake Tarpon? The only drainage project presently budgeted in the county’s 10 year plan for this area is the one that is starting construction in March 2013. The analysis shows that this project will provide a 10 year storm (level of service) protection for the surrounding streets. This level of service is in accordance with county ordinances. After this project is constructed, it will be evaluated to confirm the level of service protection. More intense storms (i.e., 25 year, 50 year, etc.) will still flood the surrounding streets, but will be drained more quickly after the storm subsides. 

2.       Why not clean out Brooker Creek from Ridgemoor Blvd to Lake Tarpon as was done in 2004? SWFWMD provided an emergency permit for cleaning in 2004, due to blockages.  There is no permit to perform additional cleaning. Consultant engineering analysis has shown that the hydraulic benefits of maintenance cleaning are minimal. 

3.       How will the coordination of release of water from the Lakes North of Tarpon Woods be handled? That is handled by SWFWMD. SWFWMD has previously communicated their objective to maximize upstream storage and minimize downstream flows via control of upstream lakes/ponds. 

4.       How will the coordination of opening the gates to drain Lake Tarpon prior to next hurricane or big storm be handled? That is handled by SWFWMD. SWFWMD has previously communicated their objective to minimize upstream flooding via control of discharge rates at Lake Tarpon. 

5.       Why was the suggestion that the golf course offered (give the County unlimited access to the golf course in exchange for land use change on holes 13&14 that joins 28 acres off Ridgemoore) to improve drainage not considered? Please see response to question #1. 

6.       How will the construction on the 28 Acres off Ridgmoore affect flooding/drainage of Brooker Creek to Lake Tarpon?  It is the responsibility of the developer to show no downstream effects in their drainage analysis when obtaining permits from SWFWMD and the County.

Tarpon Woods Action Committee



We continue to work on flood issues as this is never ending. Fortunately we have new ownership at the golf course who are willing to work with the County to try to resolve some of the problems. They are willing to give the County permanent easements on the golf course and they are also planning to improve the flood water flow over the golf course by making some significant improvements on the course. This unfortunately comes with some strings attached and they plan to have community meetings to explain it to the residents. A simple but short and not complete as to details explanation is that they also own the 28 acres near the bridge on Ridgemoor Blvd and the land is approved for housing up to 70 feet tall and a few hundred units. At present their plans are not to build that high or that many units. They will ask the County for a variance to allow them to also use part of the golf course for housing, specifically the areas around the 13th green and 14th tee, which adjoins their 28 acres on Ridgemoor. As we said they plan on a community meeting to explain in detail. We will present our position at that time.

The county will begin the next phase of their flood reducing program in this year and it will include digging up parts of Tarpon Woods Blvd. to install drainage pipes.

Richard Mucciolo
Tarpon Woods Action Committee


From Ray Jacobs, Tarpon Woods Action Committee, on flooding.



A new Pinellas County project, planned for construction in 2013, will improve drainage in the Tarpon Woods neighborhood. The project, known as the Tarpon Woods Secondary Drainage Outfalls, will construct new drainage pipes to lessen flooding along Toniwood Lane, Jennifer Terrace and North Brian Road. Residents of these streets have been historically affected by street and yard flooding.

The Tarpon Woods Secondary Drainage Outfalls project cumulates efforts by Pinellas County to improve drainage in the neighborhood. These efforts included drainage studies, the installation of a pipe under the west portion of Toniwood Lane in 2006, installation of check valves to prevent back flow in 2009 and 2012 and the upsizing of drainage pipes on the central portion of Toniwood Lane in 2010. Once constructed in 2013, the Tarpon Woods Secondary Drainage Outfalls project will connect the pipes and check valves installed previously to complete a 6,500 foot-long drainage outfall system that will carry excessive stormwater and flood waters to a location downstream of Tarpon Woods Boulevard that can handle the flow. The Tarpon Woods Action Committee, a group of neighborhood leaders, provided valuable information to the County and its consultant and was instrumental in securing the support of County Commissioners.

While the project is expected to improve drainage in the neighborhood, it will not resolve all flooding for all rainfall events. Very heavy rainfalls such at the recent “50-year” rainfall from Tropical Storm Debbie, can still cause Brooker Creek water levels to become so high that they flow heavily over the creek banks and yards into neighborhood streets. However, the residents can look forward to much less flooding in general and shorter duration flooding from most rainfall events as a result of the Tarpon Woods Secondary Drainage Outfalls project.

The project will also provide street and sidewalk improvements that will benefit everyone in the neighborhood. These improvements include the restoration of roadway pavement along Tarpon Woods Boulevard and Patti Place and other streets where flooding occurs. The sidewalk improvements will focus on bringing the sidewalk ramps at street crossings to current standards. Project design is to be completed by the end of October 2012 and construction is planned from March 2013 through November 2013. While construction is in progress, residents may encounter some temporary delays and detours

9/1/12 UPDATE

Members of the Tarpon Woods Action Committee and CNCN will be meeting with the County on 9/11/12 to further discuss the progress of flood control in Tarpon Woods, especially along Toniwood and Brian.....plans are currently under way to begin one project, however the new management of the golf course has agreed to allow the County to do work on the golf course to try to ease the problem, including the cleaning out of Brooker Creek within the Golf Course grounds.   




3.    Mr. Jacobs requested County Representatives to address issues that they were invited to cover. Reports attached…

a.)   Mr. Yauch addressed the progress on flood issues. Currently a Back Flow Preventer is being installed on Brian Road North (this was observed by Board Members this past week) per the attached report. In addition, a second project which will probably begin in 2013 will install new larger drain pipes to carry water from Brian Road to the pond off T.W. Blvd and then to the creek and further on to Lake Tarpon.

EE TARPON WOODS ACTION COMMITTEE (TWAC) MEETING MINUTES FROM 2/27/12 (Under TWAC news  link) for most recent flood update.   

Feb. 7, 2012 STORM WATER work begins again

On the storm water resolution front the county began construction on the first project to install flow control valves on Brian Road North this week! We're keeping the pressure on to keep the second and bigger project on tract. We hope that with new ownership of the golf course we may see some more cooperation with the county.

Public Comment 9/21/11

 It is unfortunate that the county has to design a solution that avoids the golf course due to the lack of cooperation from the golf course ownership. Instead of working in cooperation with the community they have chosen to isolate themselves from the solution and alienate the residents of their "host" neighborhood… Many collaboration efforts fail due to one party refusing to compromise and due to their hard stance the flood relief solutions designed by the county now exclude any solutions for the golf course. It will continue to flood and cause the course to stay closed and our hard hit streets should see relief and the flooding mitigated. 

We stay committed to keep the pressure on the county to reduce the timeline of the solution by helping cut through the bureaucracy of the permitting process. We will keep you updated as we make progress

Update September 20, 2011

Here's the latest:

-    Bryan Road Pond Flapper Valve.  Our original plan was to install a flapper valve in the northern end of the pipe that leads from the north end of the pond at Bryan Road.  Dealings with the golf course fell through ... they desired significantly more financially than what a construction easement was valued at. Therefore, we have modified the concept so there will be two flapper valves installed on the south and east side of the pond to keep water from the pond from backing up into Bryan Road.  This is in design now, with the plan to have constructed by the end of the calendar year.

-    Toniwoods and Bryan Road drainage. We have identified a gravity drainage solution that routes the outfalls to the south side of Tarpon Woods Blvd., into the creek.  This will be designed and permitted during the coming year, with construction after permits are received (probably late 2012 - early 2013 to start construction).  With the installation of the gravity system, we will be resurfacing the roads that have been impacted in the Toniwoods and Bryan Road area.

-    Lora Lane water diversion.  Structures have been designed and are in the permit review process at SWFWMD now.  This will divert some of the water coming into the Tarpon Woods area into the Preserve area instead, which is also a benefit to the Preserve as it rehydrates that land.  This project will be a work order to our contractor and will be released as soon as a permit is received.  

Funding is in place and there should not be any concerns with implementation unless we run into permitting delays.


We would be pleased to meet with your committee to go over the entire suite of projects that are in the works…if you have a target date and time in mind, we can get something set up. 

The Lora Lane project has been designed and is currently in the permitting process with both SWFWMD and the Army Corps of Engineers.  They have both requested additional information, which has delayed the construction from our original target, but our intention is to have this constructed by our concrete and drainage contractor once the permits are received (i.e., there is no bidding process needed).  Barring any additional questions, we should be into construction late this fall. 

We have discussed easements with the golf course owners and they have indicated a desire for financial reimbursement for any easements, recognizing that the work would impact their round count.  We have an independent appraiser working on developing a fair value for the desired easement.  However, anticipating that this will not be a quick or inexpensive process, we are proceeding with the design of a project to put back-flow preventer systems on Bryan Road, which will reduce flooding level and duration.  That should be constructed early in 2012; it is a more expensive solution to construct but it eliminates the need for an easement at that location. 

In addition, we are proceeding with the design of a second project to create a gravity drainage system that will drain both Toniwoods and Bryan Road.  This one also eliminates the need for easements, and represents a variation of a design sparked by the caisson designers.  A design proposal has been requested from our consultant, TBE, and we will be able to develop a realistic implementation schedule shortly.   

Both of these latter projects reflect a change in the concepts presented previously, primarily to avoid the need for easements on the golf course and keep the program moving forward.  Our consultants indicate that the implementation of these improvements will bring the area to the County’s adopted level of service for street flooding.  Cleaning the creek through the course, originally part of our plan, will help resolve flooding on the course itself, but the currently planned projects will bring major improvements to your neighborhood. 


Peter J. Yauch, P.E., FITE

Director of Stormwater and Transportation

Pinellas County, Florida

JUNE 10, 2011 UPDATE

I am writing to provide an update on the status of projects related to Tarpon Woods’ flooding issues.  We have three projects in progress. 

-          Lora Lane water diversion.  Structures have been designed and are in the permit review process at SWFWMD now.  This will divert some of the water coming into the Tarpon Woods area into the Preserve area instead, which is also a benefit to the Preserve as it rehydrates that land.  This project will be a work order to our contractor and will be released as soon as a permit is received.  I expect that to occur this summer, barring permit delays.

-          Bryan Road Pond Flapper Valve.  We have identified an improvement that will help the Bryan Road flooding significantly, and that is the installation of a flapper valve in the northern end of the pipe that leads from the north end of the pond at Bryan Road.  This requires a minimal easement from the golf course for access and maintenance, and the duration of construction would likely be less than three weeks.  We have presented an easement document to the golf course owners for their consideration.   Once an easement is obtained, it is anticipated to take 90 days for survey, design and completion of plans. After that, construction commencement would be dependent on contractor ordering materials and supplier’s response time. We are assuming that this work will not require relocation of existing utilities. We have an alternate plan if the golf course declines to agree to the easement, but one that costs more to construct.   We will base our design on discussions with the golf course, and will proceed as rapidly as possible to have this implemented. 

-          Toniwoods and Bryan Road drainage. Following up on the design concept presented by Coastal Caisson, we have identified another gravity drainage solution.  However, instead of connecting into the golf course drainage system, we can route the outfalls to the south side of Tarpon Woods Blvd., into the creek.  This is a more extensive project, but one that should be implementable in the near future. 

Ultimately, the cleaning of Brooker Creek through the golf course would also be beneficial, but the improvements in these three projects provide a greater benefit in a shorter time period. 


Peter J. Yauch, P.E., FITE

Director of Public Works and Transportation

Pinellas County, Florida

12/14/10 County Commission Update


Following is some information related to the proposed projects and their scheduling.  Note that almost all are based on obtaining easements from the golf course.  We are proceeding with number 2, which does not need an easement, as our highest priority and something that should be able to be constructed this year.

·         SWFWMD agreement commits to 50% funding of the projects below. Costs shown are total costs, 50% of which would be paid by SWFWMD and 50% by the County.

1. TBE Study Priority #3 - Maintenance of Brooker Creek  -  $500,000 – Design, permitting and easements acquisition in FY11 & Construction FY11

This work is contingent on obtaining easements from the Golf Course.

This work may be difficult to permit since it proposes working within Brooker Creek, which is deemed a jurisdictional wetland. 

2. URS Study Alt.1 & 2 –    $226,000 – Design and permitting in FY11   - Construction FY12

     Additional Culverts and Weirs at Two Power Line Road hydration crossings at Lora Lane

     This work is proposed upstream of the Tarpon Woods subdivision and does not require easements from the Golf Course 

3. TBE Study Priority # 5 – Outfall Pipe  - $200,000   -  Design and Permitting FY11  - Construction FY12 Improvements       

    Improvements to outfall pipe to Tarpon Woods subdivision into Brooker Creek.    

    This work is contingent on obtaining easements from the Golf Course. 

4. TBE Study Priority # 7 –  $200,000 - Design, Permitting, Easement acquisition in FY12 - Construction – Construction in FY13

    Replacement of control structure and outfall at South Toniwood Pond

    This work is contingent on obtaining easements from the Golf Course 

5. TBE Study Priority # 9 - Outfall $800,000 - Design, Permitting, Easement acquisition in FY12 …Construction – Construction in FY13          

    Construction of outfall from Bryan Pond to South Toniwood Pond

    This work is contingent on obtaining easements from the Golf Course 

We are also working with a contractor to look at the “vault / lift station” option which may be a feasible alternative.  More on that as we progress.



Peter J. Yauch, P.E., FITE

Director of Public Works and Transportation

Pinellas County, Florida


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Flood Improvements Coming 10/7/10

Oct. 7, 2010

Board votes to fund projects to help reduce flooding in Tarpon Woods

The Southwest Florida Water Management District’s Pinellas-Anclote River Basin Board voted Oct. 6 to fund three projects to help reduce flooding in East Lake’s Tarpon Woods subdivision.

The cost of the $1.9 million in projects will be funded equally by the Pinellas-Anclote River Basin Board and Pinellas County.

Pinellas County requested funding for the projects outside the typical funding cycle to provide some flooding relief to the community before the next rainy season. The Tarpon Woods area, which has historically experienced flooding problems, experienced flooding again this summer. The projects funded by the Board include:

·         Maintaining channels between Ridgemoor and Tarpon Woods boulevards, including removing sandbars, vegetation and downed trees hindering flow in the creek. The $500,000 project should improve flood protection in the Tarpon Woods area during the typical afternoon rainfall event, and could begin early next year.

·         Filling ditches, constructing small overflow dams, and adding culverts to better manage water levels and maintain or restore historic flow paths in Brooker Creek Preserve. Design and permitting for this $226,000 project is expected to be completed by the end of 2011, with construction starting in 2012.

·         Increasing the capacity of the Toniwoods Lane South outfall system by replacing existing pipes with larger sizes. The $1.2 million project should reduce the severity of flooding in the Toniwoods area of Tarpon Woods. Construction is expected to be completed sometime in 2012 or 2013.

The District completed the Brooker Creek Watershed Management Plan in July, which identified projects that would improve the hydrology of wetlands in the Brooker Creek Preserve and provide additional flood protection in the Tarpon Woods area. District scientists created a computer model for the Brooker Creek watershed, an area covering approximately 46 square miles in Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties. District staff presented the results of the project to the Board at the Oct. 6 meeting.

A watershed is a geographic area from which water in a particular stream, lake, or estuary originates. All lands in the watershed drain toward a stream, lake, or bay and contribute pollutants to these waters. A watershed management plan offers solutions for reducing flooding and improving water quality within a watershed based on a comprehensive evaluation of the watershed’s historical and existing features.

The Pinellas-Anclote River Basin Board area includes Pinellas County and the southern portion of Pasco County. The District has seven regional Basin Boards that provide guidance for local programs that are specific to the watershed basins they protect. The District’s eighth basin, the Green Swamp, is administered by the Governing Board. Basin Boards work with local governments and other entities on water resource projects that have an impact in local communities. Basin Boards often provide partial funding for these projects in partnership with a local government or local cooperator.

Basin Board members are unpaid citizen volunteers appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate. They serve three-year staggered terms. Each of the Basin Boards includes a minimum of one person from each county within the basin, and there must be at least three members on each Board. Each Basin Board has at least one of the 13 members of the District’s Governing Board that serves as the Board’s co-chair.

Robyn Felix,Media Relations Manager

Southwest Florida Water Management District

Direct: 1-800-423-1476  ext. 4770, Cell: (813) 781-9817,

County adds funding for flood control

From: "Latvala, Susan" <>
Date: October 6, 2010 12:01:31 PM CDT
Subject: Tarpon Woods
I am pleased to let you know, that I attended the Pinellas-Anclote River Basin Board Meeting this morning and the Board unanimously approved our co-funding request for $963,000 for the Tarpon Woods improvements.

Susan Latvala

Pinellas County Commissioner

Thank You East Lake Blister for helping in this effort.

! Senator Fasano Announces $1 million funding available to help flooding in Tarpon Woods

By Greg Giordano, Chief Legislative Assistant to State Senator Mike Fasano
Published Oct 06, 2010

The Pinellas-Anclote River  Basin Board met today and approved $1 million in funds that will help address flooding problems experienced by the residents of Tarpon Woods.  Senator Mike Fasano credits Governor Charlie Crist for acting swiftly in order to help the residents who have long endured flooding in their community.
On September 9th State Senator Mike Fasano met with residents of Tarpon Woods to discuss the flooding problems that have plagued the developments near Tarpon Woods Boulevard. After discussing the problem with Mr. Todd Pressman, the co-chair of the Pinellas-Anclote River Basin Board, Senator Fasano was advised that the Board was short a member and has been unable to muster a quorum.  With an October 6th meeting looming, and the board short one member, Senator Fasano reached out into the community for assistance.  Mr. Rollie Dove, a civil engineer with extensive water management experience, applied for the vacant position.  Mr. Dove is employed by Spring Engineering of Holiday.   Governor Crist appointed Mr. Dove to the Basin Board on September 24.
“I would like to thank Governor Charlie Crist for quickly appointing Mr. Dove to the Basin Board,” Senator Fasano states.  “Without the governor’s swift action the Board would not have been able to meet and approve the funds that are so desperately needed by the residents of Tarpon Woods.”
The funds will allow Pinellas County to develop methods to control flooding in the Brooker Creek Watershed, which is directly responsible for the Tarpon Woods flooding. 

Appointment to Swiftmud

Date: September 13, 2010
Subject: Pinellas-Anclote Basin Board
Mr. Rollie Dove of Spring Engineering  has been nominated for appointment for the Pasco position on the Board of Swiftmud.  Mr. Dove is a civil engineer who has 25 years of experience planning and designing water systems in Florida.  The governor is considering the application and should make a decision shortly.
Greg Giordano
Chief Legislative Assistant to State Senator Mike Fasano

September 10, 2010 meeting Tarpon Woods

This summary was produced at the request of Tarpon Woods Action Committee (TWAC) there shall be a news article in the not too distant future. Request that aides for Senator Fasano and Representative Nehr ensure deliver of this correspondence. A meeting was held at the Brooker Creek Golf Club, in the Beef O’Brady’s Restaurant for the purpose of information of Florida State, Senator Mike Fasano and Florida State Representative Peter Nehr, both who attended with their aides.  

President Ray Jacobs, Tarpon Woods Action Committee (TWAC), Richard Mucciolo, Vice President TWAC and TWAC Directors, Ruhling and Oun hosted the meeting. Mr. Greg McClimans also attended and supplied golf carts for transportation so the group after the question and answer session could tour the property to see pertinent areas which will be part and parcel to the informational process this date.

The purpose of the meeting was to familiarize the Senator and the Representative with current difficulties encountered between the Pinellas County government and the Florida State Agency called Southwest Florida Water Management Water District (SWFWMD) namely the needs of, permitting, manning levels in order to have a full board, which will allow voting on such things as assisting with permitting, voting on financial assistance in cost allocation for accomplishment of sharing with Pinellas County and enhancing forward progress in a timely fashion to alleviate what seem like inter-agency competiveness. 

Ray Jacobs gave an overview as to the frustration of the citizens all whom are constituents of both the officials who attended and requested that they and their good offices come to the assistance of these citizens of Tarpon Woods Community. 

Both gentlemen, who were forthright and stated, that though they were empathetic to the problems, technically the problems were directly on the shoulders of Pinellas County and SWFWMD, but through their good offices they would aid and abet to their maximum ability to bring to successful completion of their problems. 

Their (Senator/Representative) offices had been supplied, all the emails, sent to the East Lake Blister, a set of photographs taken during the flooding by the East Lake Blister and all the documents acquired by same at the September 8, 2010, meeting held at 400 Court Street, Clearwater both Commissioner Susan Latvala, and SWFWMD Board member Todd Pressman both whom had assembled an excellent group from their respective offices. That meeting which had been assembled on somewhat short notice had been attended by President of Tarpon Woods Action Committee and resident of same and also President Don Ewing of CNCN and John Miolla who is a Director on that board also and attending this meeting today. 

Senator Fasano stated he would call the Governor’s office this day and respectfully ask that the vacant position on the board be filled as soon as possible. He also was direct, that there would be no funds available from the state this year and none in the next year’s forth coming budget for this problem.  Sadly but true the Senator stated, “This has been going on for years and should have been resolved years ago, but this is an election year isn’t it?” 

Representative Nehr stated that he would continue his conversations with Todd Pressman, Commissioner Latvala and Peter Yaugh, Director Public of Public Works in their attempts to alleviate the problem that Tarpon Woods, has. Representative Nehr reiterated that he had attended years ago the meeting held in the community and also at the East Lake High School and sadly, the problem continues. He also reinforced Senator Fasano’s words that unfortunately, the fiscal situation at the state level has already been obligated and the prospects of the state having funds are for the lack of better words grim.  

At the end of the conversations, the group with the exception of Senator Fasano, mounted up in the golf carts supplied by the club and did a tour of the water soaked areas both the course and the Tarpon Woods neighborhood, which was very informative.

H. Patrick Wheeler
Managing Editor
East Lake Blister


From: Ray Jacobs Date:
Fri, Sep 10, 2010
Subject: Meeting with Fazano & Nehr

Thanks to Senator Fazano, Representative Nehr (and your Legislative Assistants) and Greg McClimans for attending out meeting on September 9, 2010 at Beef O’Brady’s inside the Brooker Creek Golf Club.  Our objective of the meeting was to bring all parties up to date on the FLOODING PROBLEMS in Tarpon Woods and to begin the process to correct them.  We realize the permanent solution is a long-term and expensive but most agree some steps can be taken quickly and not too expensive.


* All attendees were brought up to date on the meeting chaired by Commissioner Latvala with Pinellas County Engineers and SWFWMD attended by John Miolla, Patrick Wheeler and me.  A re-cap of that meeting can also be seen on

* Discussion centered around the most recent flooding and failed efforts to correct the problem.

* Greg McClimans made golf carts available and Representative Nehr and others toured the back nine of the golf course to see some of the remaining high water from the flood.

* Senator Fazano indicated that no money from the State was available in this year’s or next year’s budget.  He also indicated that the SWFWMD Board of Directors was one member short preventing a unanimous decision to be made by them.


* Senator Fazano said that he would contact the Governor’s Office to see if the vacancy on the SWFWMD board could be appointed quickly.

* Representative Nehr said that he would contact Commissioner Latvala, Todd Pressman and Peter Youch for a meeting to determine the costs for the immediate fixes for the Tarpon Woods flooding and to give him (Peter Nehr) specific information where easements would be needed.  Representative Nehr also indicated that he would ask Todd Pressman to expedite getting the easements approved. (Todd Pressman is the Chairman of Swiftmud)

I shall appreciate your keeping me and the others involved  aware of the progress to help solve this long running problem.

Thanks again to all that attended our meeting.

Sincerely,   Ray Jacobs, President

Tarpon Woods Action Committee

September 10, 2010 meeting held by TWAC

This mornings meeting with  TWAC, Senator Fasano, Rep Nehr, Tarpon Woods golf course owner and CNCN was helpful in getting the State and the Golf course owner involved in the process. During the meeting the State politicians advised  the only money's available would be through SWFTMUD, the State has none through the 2011 fiscal year. They committed to contacting the Governor's office to have them appoint an additional member to the Anclote Basin board, this will allow a Quorum to vote on awarding matching Funds to the County for necessary work. ( REP Nehr asked how much money the county needed) Ray  advised their were estimates as high as 50 million for some of the projects. Realistically we are looking at the first step in many, the first being to have the Creek maintained, to allow free flow of water in the Creek. The representative from the County and SWFTMUD didn't attend the meeting.. I gave a rundown on yesterdays meeting to all in attendance and  advised that  Maintenance in the Brooker Creek could be extremely helpful in preventing the creek from overflowing, onto the golf course as well as flooding homes. I advised the Golf Course owner that his cooperation with the County could expedite the Creek maintenance. He made no commitment. The State Politicians will insure that SWFTMUD permitting if any is necessary be expedited. All in attendance toured the golf course after the meeting to witness first hand the flooding on the golf course. I spoke to the Golf course owner and spoke to the issue of right of way being allowed in an effort to help the golf course as well as the community. Patrick Wheeler was in attendance and spoke to several issues. I took exception to his e-mail he sent this morning to the Senator which in my opinion was not helpful in moving the process forward. I made that comment as an individual not as a CNCN board member.  All in all the meeting went well, now we must prod the County in an attempt to get cooperation from The Golf course owner to allow the Creek maintenance to move forward. An issue brought to the attention of all is a pipe installed by the county in the creek on hole 13 that is completely out of the water. This must be brought to the attention of the engineers and have this issue addressed soon. I have e-mailed Pete Yauch and Engineer Mike Maroney to have them address the pipe issue


September 8, 2010, meeting with County

!Tarpon Woods Meeting held by Pinellas County

By East Lake Blister Staff
Published Sep 10, 2010

Wednesday, September 8, 2010 a meeting was held at 440 Court Street in room 111 to discuss the flooding in Tarpon Woods, which was chaired, by Pinellas County Commissioner Susan Latvala and SWFWMD Governing Board member Todd Pressman. Included in this group were Peter Yauch, Director of Pinellas County Public Works and numerous members of his staff along with a large contingent of SWFWMD members supporting Mr. Pressman. Included at the table was President, Don Ewing, of Council of North County Neighbors, (CNCN) and President, Ray Jacobs, of the Tarpon Woods Action Committee (TWAC) and other concerned individuals in the audience.
A thorough review by SWFWMD of all the flow of water through the flood plain, The in depth analysis left nothing out as to the remedial actions which could assist alleviate the water from flooding Tarpon Woods.  
The members of Pinellas County group started their review, it seemed getting up in front of the audience and talking was not their “thing” so they talked from the chairs around the table. Though information was good, unless you were in their view or speech distance, unfortunately, a large portion of the pertinent information was lost. Handouts were excellent and the both organizations certainly responded to requests but a power point presentation would have certainly enhanced a good presentation to become an excellent presentation.  
Todd Pressman, certainly took grasp of issues and explained that the SWFWMD board was short one member to make a majority and that as to getting emergency appropriations his crew was at the ready to work on funds and also pushing through assisting with permitting as quickly as possible.  His crew similar to the Pinellas group certainly must be lauded for having all the technical information needed to give answers to those who attended.
Interesting enough, had they invited Mr. Greg McClimans to this gathering a bit of progress possibly could have been made as there was a large amount of conversation from the Pinellas group as to getting permission to gain access onto the golf course which is his property and where Brooker Creek runs through. The county does not have unfettered access and seeing that at least nine holes of this golf course has had extreme flooding perhaps it would have been advantageous to include the gentleman in this meeting.    
It is interesting to many that tens of thousands of taxpayers dollars are being spend recently, and hundred of thousand over the last decade have been spent with absolutely not satisfactory results. There have been meeting both in Tarpon Woods and a few years ago a large meeting was held at the East Lake High School. Everything was talked about somewhat similar as it was today, except the crowds were larger, but there was not the technical information available which SWFWMD had today. Pinellas County after the East Lake High School Meeting just seemed to putter along.  
Then when the Jim Smith “Bomb” exploded in Tarpon Woods, and all the major newspapers were walking around doing articles, the Pinellas Country crews disappeared like smoke into the air and they were gone for years.  Then the emails started again take a look at the following sight  these are relatively mild mannered. I have some, where residents are complaining about taking canoes to get to their homes.   
The county can be compared somewhat to a roofing company which comes around during rainy weather, promises to fix your roof, takes you money, does a bad patch job, and then comes back, and wants to raise your taxes. Like it or not, you either like or lump it.
Then the rain goes away, the place dries out, you get happy, Pinellas Public works smiles and breathes a deep sigh of relief and all is well until guess what. Another, rainy season, you get mad, you want your roof fixed, the commissioners jump up and down, it is called like the play which runs on Broadway every other year “Promises, Promises, I could name the main star of the show but this is an election year. 

9/1/10 Flooding update

From: "Yauch, Peter J" <>
Date: September 1, 2010 12:40:59 PM EDT
To: "Todd Pressman" <>
Subject: RE: Pressman: Tarpon Woods Flooding/SWFWMD

Todd, thanks for the info.  One question I would have is how does the “maximum desirable” level compare with flood level – since we are having flooding problems downstream.  Item 2 below references that some more…


I did ask our folks about some areas that we would like to request assistance from SWFWMD – here are a number of key items:


1.      Pinellas County would benefit from the authorization to remotely access the gate information for stage and flow for the SCADA systems operated by SWFWMD on Lakes Keystone and Island Ford in Hillsborough County.  SWFWMD currently has the ability to both monitor and operate the flood gate systems on the lakes.  While we are not requesting any ability to operate the gates, it would be beneficial for us to be able to monitor lake levels and determine when large outflows will be sent to Brooker Creek headwaters.  We know from experience that there is a lag of approximately 1.5 days for the runoff from the lakes to arrive at Tarpon Woods, since approximately 60% of the watershed is in Hillsborough County.


2.      It would be beneficial to have a dedicated contact person at SWFWMD to act as liaison with County Operations personnel. Several of the roadways within Tarpon Woods flooded last week, impeding access to homeowner’s driveways.  One of the roadways remained flooded for over six days.  During that time (Friday 8/27/10), County personnel visited both Lake Keystone and Lake Island Ford.  Both gates were wide open at the lakes at the time, although no rain was falling in the area.  As the picture below indicates, there was significant freeboard in Lake Keystone (although no freeboard remained at Lake Island Ford).  Keystone Lake was experiencing no over-bulkhead flooding while the roadways in Tarpon Woods were under water.  It would be beneficial to re-visit the procedure for operation of these gates and confirm that there is an accurate balancing of flooding potential for upstream and downstream sites (i.e., Tarpon Woods subdivision). 


3.      The Tarpon Woods community has several unique features which, while enhancing the golf course, tend to worsen significant flooding from large rainfall events.  During the four hurricane events of 2004, Governor Jeb Bush signed an emergency measure allowing for communities to perform maintenance and other flood control measures ahead of the storms without requiring permitting from the Water Management Districts.  Pinellas County took the opportunity to extensively remove flow impediments along an approximately 2,000 foot stretch of Brooker Creek along the golf course in Tarpon Woods.  The golf course granted access to Pinellas County personnel to alleviate extensive flooding of the area and the golf course by means of this clearing operation. Several hundred loads of dead trees, sediment and accumulated leaves were removed from within the banks of the Creek.  Flow ability was significantly improved and the community was spared from even more extensive flooding, and the recovery following the storms was also significantly improved.


Last year, the County directed one of its consultants to look at the flooding problems occurring at Tarpon Woods independent of the ongoing SWFWMD watershed study of Brooker Creek.  One of the recommendations from the study recommended further maintenance clearing of the Creek to improve flow.  We know from monitoring of two USGS gauges, one upstream (at Ridgemoor Drive) and one downstream (at Tarpon Woods Boulevard), that the hydraulic differential during a significant storm event approaches five feet.  That five-feet of head loss creates much of the overbank flooding in the Tarpon Woods community.  Removal of vegetation, especially that which has accumulated in the middle of the Creek since 2004, could reduce that head loss and flooding in the area.  We would like to survey the Creek in its existing state, verify some pipes and outfalls into the Creek from the golf course and community, and clear the Creek in an environmentally responsible manner.  This would require: additional engineering and survey services, payment for necessary easements from the golf course owner, and funding of maintenance clearing including vegetation removal and transport to a suitable off site land fill.  The estimates for this work are:


Engineering and survey services                   $100,000

Easements from the golf course owner         $150,000

Construction and offsite transport                  $250,000

Total work effort estimate                           $500,000


In summary, we believe that the items mentioned above will assist in reducing the effects of flooding events in the Tarpon Woods subdivision and also significantly shorten the amount of time that the roadways are under water.


Thanks for your assistance!




Peter J. Yauch, P.E.

Director of Public Works and Transportation

Pinellas County, Florida




From: Todd Pressman []
Sent: Tuesday, August 31, 2010 6:49 PM
Subject: Fwd: Pressman: Tarpon Woods Flooding/SWFWMD



Begin forwarded message:

From: Bruce Wirth <>

Date: August 31, 2010 4:42:39 PM EDT

Subject: RE: Pressman: Tarpon Woods Flooding/SWFWMD

Todd; Here’s what I’ve learned on this latest issue of Keystone being the problem according to Pinellas staff.  The way Keystone plays into water levels in Brooker Creek (Tarpon Woods) is that 3 lakes in Northwest Hillsborough are connected that ultimately discharge into Brooker Creek north of Keystone road at about the County line.  Lake Crescent discharges to Keystone Lake, Keystone to Island Ford and Island Ford into Brooker Creek.  We normally at this time of year try to maintain about a half foot of storage in the lakes to allow for heavy rainfall events which allows us to let their levels rise to their respective maximum desirable levels.  Levels above the max. desirable begin to cause flooding to docks, seawalls yards, etc.


Last week after significant rainfall in the watershed, Tarpon Woods began having the same old problems of street flooding and some yard flooding.   Citizens began calling the County, the County called our staff asking that we stop or slow down discharges from Island Ford. This was last Thursday.  Our staff was out in the area and went and looked at the lake levels, both visually and on our scada system and could not limit discharge as the lake levels were nearing the max. desirable levels and it was still raining and levels were rising.   Presently Crescent Lake is at 41.24 and the max des. Is 41.3, Keystone is at 41.51, Max. des. 41.50 and Island Ford is at 40.84, max. des. 41….Brooker Creek is falling but we still are discharging about 80% out of Island Ford seeking to regain some of that storage back as Keystone is right at max. des. And Crescent within less than a tenth of a foot.   


I would not suggest we slow down discharge out of Island Ford at this time as we need to regain storage, but I would expect to see things get better at Tarpon Woods as no rain the last 2 days and levels falling.   This is the same thing every year…Pinellas wants to keep the Hillsborough Lakes lower entering the rainy season to provide greater storage, lake residents want their levels.  The reality of it is that if we don’t operate the system as we are, that being discharging a high but steady amount out of Island Ford, we could find ourselves in a situation where we held too much in the lakes, get a very high rainfall event(s) and we would then have to go full discharge and really cause problems. 


Your thoughts?


On Sep 1, 2010, at 8:59 AM, "Don Ewing \(CNCN\)" <> wrote:

Good morning Mr. Pressman,

Thank you for agreeing to look into the decades old problem of significant annual street flooding in the Tarpon Woods subdivision of 800 homes and condos in the East Lake area of Pinellas County during rain events. As a resident of Tarpon Woods subdivision I have suffered with street flooding which renders our street Brian Road North, and Toniwood Blvd impassible for long periods of time most years. This summer we had 6 days in July and 8 days this month where there has been up to one foot of water at the crest of the street. This is with “normal” summer rain conditions! Each year I fear Hurricane season, for many reasons, but the inevitable flooding of our road is one of the concerns. Many times residents have had to park down the street and walk through water on the sidewalks to get to their homes. Public Works monitors the water levels during every rain event and brings out High Water signs, the TV news stations occasionally put snippets of stranded cars on the nightly news and emergency Fire and EMS departments have specific plans to deal with flooding in our subdivision due to the continued problems.

Pinellas County has been very helpful in identifying potential solutions to the problems over the years and has spent considerable time, money and resources to try to fix problems with the area dating back to building standards from the mid 70’s and early 80’s. A comprehensive solution has not been put into place for two reasons: 1. Funding, 2. SWFWMD and environmental approval.

We have participated with the County Commission and Public Works during the many brainstorming sessions about solutions and even brought in outside consultants to offer options to fixing the problems in the area. Mostly the solutions always come back to the source of the flooding problems which is Brooker Creek. As you know Brooker Creek flows from Hillsborough County through northeastern Pinellas County and empties into Lake Tarpon. There are several solutions that are always mentioned but always seem to rest on SWFWMD approval to accomplish, and to date after over 13 years personally of trying to find a solution we still have not made enough progress to mitigate the flooding.

1.  Brooker Creek flow capacity is not sufficient to handle the significant rain events and overflows it’s banks causing the flooding impact on the Tarpon Woods subdivision and golf course.

2.  Release of water upstream of Tarpon Woods in Hillsborough County needs to be regulated because inevitably within 2 to 3 days after we experience the flooding conditions and the water begins to recede, we get another rise in the water levels due to the downstream flow from the upstream lakes and streams.

3.  The level of Lake Tarpon is sometimes too high to handle the peak 2-5 day increased flow from rain events and slows the flow of Brooker Creek causing increased height and overflow.

4.  The overgrowth and debris in Brooker Creek from Ridgemoor Boulevard to the Tarpon Woods Boulevard bridges is significant enough to slow the flow of the creek in this segment and causes the water to backup and overflow it’s banks flooding the golf course and surrounding homes. Downstream I’m told that the water flows quickly into Lake Tarpon and upstream there doesn’t not appear to be any issues with flow.

5.  Right of way access to Brooker Creek which runs inside the privately owned Brooker Creek Golf Club where the owner has not been reasonable in allowing the problem to be solved.

Mr. Pressman, in speaking on behalf of the owners of the 800 homes and condos in the Tarpon Woods subdivision and the many hundreds of homeowners in the Ridgemoor and neighboring communities that use our county connector road, Tarpon Woods Boulevard to get home at night we ask that you do whatever is necessary to provide Pinellas County with the emergency approvals and funding to help our community finally solve our flooding problems!

Thanks for your time and assistance,

Best regards,

Tarpons Woods resident and

Don Ewing, Jr.


Council of North County Neighborhoods, Inc.


Hello Don,

I spent this morning touring the Tarpon Woods area. I can understand your concerns.

I am planning a storm debriefing with both operations and maintenance staff to review strategies and plans for the future.

The pumping is successful at Toniwood. The only locations to pump to from Bryan basically feed back to the same ponds - pumping will not work here.

More info to come.

Pete Yauch

Pete Yauch
Director of Public Works and Transportation - Pinellas County

Correspondence, flood issue, July, Aug 2010

Good morning Pete, (Yauch) 

I appreciate the long term view of trying to find a solution to the 30 year problem of flooding in Tarpon Woods. However this morning there are residents of Brian Road North that WILL NOT BE ABLE TO LEAVE THEIR HOMES BY CAR due to the seemingly new high tide mark of the current level of flooding. My own wife called me this morning concerned that she would not be able to leave our house this morning for her doctor’s appointment. 

On the issue of the potential benefits of pumping the Brian Road pond I would take exception to the engineering conclusions that it would not help reduce the length of time the roads stay flooded and the height of the water on the roadways. In case your studies didn’t reveal the following facts I would appreciate it if you would just bring a pump out and drain the swamp today! 

1.       The flooding on Toniwood / Jennifer are a result of the water from Brooker creek overflowing its banks and entering the pond on the east side of Toniwood which backs up and overflows on the corner of Toniwood and Jennifer. This is where you placed the current pump on EVERY RAIN EVENT.

2.       The Toniwood pond is connected to the Brian Road pond through a 24-36” pipe that runs under the 16th fairway of the golf course. Public Works replaced this pipe and put in new weirs several years ago.

3.       When the level of the Toniwood pond rises and begins to cause the Toniwood flooding it is partially due to the fact that it has filled up the Brian Road pond and the water has nowhere else to go.

4.       The Brian Road pond fills up and now Brian Road and Tarpon Woods Boulevard at Stag Thicket floods. Today this impacts the flow of traffic on the connector road Tarpon Woods Blvd which causes safety issues for ambulance and fire department access.

5.       The storm drains on Tarpon Woods Blvd from Brian Road to East Lake road NEVER exceed capacity. 

It seems to me, as someone who is not qualified as a surface water engineering specialist, that indeed the problems of the Toniwood flooding and the Brian Road flooding are interconnected. It also seems that for the short term, placing a pump at Brian Road north which would pump water on to Tarpon Woods Blvd in the westerly direction (towards the golf course) would allow the water to reduce faster without causing any undue stress elsewhere downstream. As point #5 above indicates the TW Blvd storm drain seems to have the capacity to handle more water. 

I appeal to you to take an otherwise unused pump from your storage facility and bring it out today to test the layman hypothesis that it will indeed help mitigate the problem in the short term. What have you got to lose? What would be any possible negative impact. 

For a more permanent solution I would also implore you to hire a consulting firm that can think outside the box  and find another solution to this problem. As you point out in your messages there is a serious impediment with the golf course ownership that would seem to prevent a solution from occurring within the golf course property due to selfish personal gain motives. FYI when the flooding reaches this stage the golf course is also impassible and unusable for the duration of the flooding conditions. I would like to request a new meeting with a design team to help brainstorm options that might be able to help more water move faster down Brooker Creek and keep the creek within its boundaries which would ultimately solve more of the problems. 

I believe that many of the 800 Tarpon Woods homeowners and the additional hundreds of Ridgemoor, Bridlewood, Oak Trails residents impacted by the impassible Tarpon Woods connector road would be happy to show up at a few County Commission meetings to help get the point across in the coming months. 


Don Ewing, Jr.

Resident of Tarpons Woods subdivision


From: Yauch, Peter J []
Sent: Tuesday, August 24, 2010 3:59 PM
To: Don Ewing (CNCN)
Subject: RE: Tarpon Woods still flooding 07-06-2010!


We are in the field monitoring the flooding, which is happening at numerous places throughout the County after these heavy rains. 

We have looked at the potential benefits of pumping at Bryan Road, but with the current interconnections between ponds in the area, we don’t believe that pumping here will help to draw down the water.  We are pumping at Toniwood and Jennifer and are showing a benefit there. 

As you know, the Engineering Department is implementing a multi phase plan to improve drainage in the Tarpon Woods subdivision.  Here is current status: 

Phases 1 & 2 have been constructed. 

Phase 3 will be starting design after necessary easements are obtained from the golf course. The county’s engineering consultant will be providing the county with drawings showing the necessary easement areas within 2 weeks. Thereafter, the County will develop legal descriptions for these necessary easements. Once the legal descriptions are developed, the Real Estate division will approach the golf course owner to discuss acquisition of these necessary easements. 

After necessary easements are signed/provided by the golf course owner, the county will begin design of phase 3 improvements, which include larger outfall drainage pipes and a backflow preventer near the Brian Road ponds. Assuming that easements are obtained within a few months, it is anticipated that design, plans preparation, specifications preparation and acquisition of environmental permits (i.e., SWFWMD), will be completed in FY11, which would allow for construction to be completed in FY12. 

If you have any concerns or comments, please let me know. 

Peter J. Yauch, P.E.

Director of Public Works and Transportation

Pinellas County, Florida 

From: Don Ewing (CNCN) []
Sent: Monday, August 23, 2010 9:34 PM
To: Yauch, Peter J
Cc: LaSala, Robert; Latvala, Susan;; Fernandez, Ivan J; Herbst, Jan R; Quintas, Jorge M; Maroney, Michael P; Tracy, Kimberley; Talhouk, David A
Subject: RE: Tarpon Woods still flooding 07-06-2010!


It looks like Brian Road will begin flooding after the next rain tonight or in the morning. Have you made a decision to consider putting a pump to reduce the level of the Brian Road N pond or anything else to help the water level reduce faster?

Thanks for your assistance,

Don Ewing, Jr.


Council of North County Neighborhoods, Inc.

Cell Phone 727-560-5586

From: Yauch, Peter J []
Sent: Thursday, July 08, 2010 8:39 AM
To: Don Ewing (CNCN)
Cc: LaSala, Robert; Latvala, Susan;; Fernandez, Ivan J; Herbst, Jan R; Quintas, Jorge M; Maroney, Michael P; Tracy, Kimberley; Talhouk, David A
Subject: RE: Tarpon Woods still flooding 07-06-2010!


Actually, construction costs to date total about $ 327,000 - $ 67K for the backflow preventers installed last year and $ 260K for the recently completed work on Toniwood.  The larger number you referenced was a working budget before we got into actual design.   

A review of the modeling results shows that what we observed pretty well matches the projections – about a six inch reduction in water levels during the storm event, prior to the creek itself overflowing.  We’re doing some more analyses on the recovery times. 

As you recall, there were a list of interim improvements developed by the consultant – each designed to reduce the impacts of the flooding.  The next one in priority requires easements through the golf course.  We’ve initiated the planning for that next step.   A meeting with your committee would probably help to advance these issues. 

We’re evaluating the pump positioning.  The ponds are all interconnected and a pump at Bryan may not be effective.  I’ll have more info for you soon.  We are definitely willing to work with you on the most effective way to minimize these impacts. 

Peter J. Yauch, P.E.

Director of Public Works and Transportation

Pinellas County, Florida


From: Don Ewing (CNCN) []
Sent: Wednesday, July 07, 2010 3:44 PM
To: Yauch, Peter J
Cc: LaSala, Robert; Latvala, Susan;; Fernandez, Ivan J; Herbst, Jan R; Quintas, Jorge M; Maroney, Michael P; Tracy, Kimberley
Subject: RE: Tarpon Woods still flooding 07-06-2010!


Thanks for the update. Yes I understand about the lack of a total solution but I was expecting a little better result from the $1.5M the county spent on the Toniwood solution. 

What about the request for a temporary pump to be installed on Brian Road? 

Best regards,

 Don Ewing, Jr.


Council of North County Neighborhoods, Inc.

Cell phone: 727-560-5586

From: Yauch, Peter J []
Sent: Wednesday, July 07, 2010 2:24 PM
To: Don Ewing (CNCN)
Cc: LaSala, Robert; Latvala, Susan;; Fernandez, Ivan J; Herbst, Jan R; Quintas, Jorge M; Maroney, Michael P; Tracy, Kimberley
Subject: RE: Tarpon Woods still flooding 07-06-2010!

Don, thanks for the update, we’ve been watching the area closely over the weekend as well. 

First, we have to remember the intent of the two small projects that we completed in the Toniwood area.  They were designed to help drainage for smaller storms and to speed recovery after a large storm.  They were not intended to prevent flooding should Brooker Creek overflow its banks. These were interim improvements; we’ve said previously that a total solution to flooding in the area would entail the diversion of water away from Brooker Creek and would cost multiple millions of dollars.  The subdivision was built in a floodplain and the streets were designed by the original developer to flood during major storm events – so there is a lot to “undo” to achieve a total solution to flooding. 

We made multiple observations of storm water conditions during the weekend, and we’re in the process of tracking and comparing these observations to the gauge readings on the creek and the recorded rainfall amounts.  We will be comparing these to the calculations previously made to determine the effectiveness of the projects that have been completed. Our preliminary observations show that street ponding, which would have “historically” started on Friday, July 1, when the gauge reached an elevation of 11.0 feet, did not begin until Monday, July 4, when the gauge reached nearly 11.5. This approximate 0.5 foot differential appears to be a benefit derived from the constructed improvements, which allows the road to be passable with higher rainfalls.   

We’d be happy to meet with you to discuss our findings and to review options for additional projects in the area. 

Peter J. Yauch, P.E.

Director of Public Works and Transportation

Pinellas County, Florida 

From: Don Ewing (CNCN) []
Sent: Tuesday, July 06, 2010 8:09 PM
To: Yauch, Peter J
Cc: LaSala, Robert; Latvala, Susan;
Subject: Tarpon Woods still flooding 07-06-2010!
Importance: High

Good evening Pete, 

I just returned from a short vacation out of town to discover that the Tarpon Woods flooding problems, specifically on Toniwood Lane and Brian Road North ARE NOT RESOLVED. I am extremely concerned that in the absence of a hurricane or significant rain event our subdivision still has flooding problems and all the money, time and resources spent last year are in vain. Nothing has changed! 

The capacity of Brooker Creek to flow adequately, and empty the water from the golf course, retainage ponds and streets is still an issue. The new drainage pipes installed this year on Toniwood may have helped with the Toniwood flooding, although the northwest portion of Toniwood is beginning to back up and flood tonight. But then your department knew that because they have already installed a pump and pipes on the street but the road is still flooding (see picture 2010-07-06 18.21.40). The storm drain adjacent to the pump is show overflowing in picture 2010-07-06 18.22.09. 

The pond behind Brian Road North is over capacity and the street storm drains are also beginning to overflow (see picture 2010-07-06 18.24.35) tonight. By morning Brian Road North should also have full street flooding.  

I realize that many factors contribute to the flood conditions in Tarpon Woods and I remember the vast amount of county consultant reports and SWFWMD studies and modeling that our tax dollars purchased to find solutions to this issue, but the fact remains that we have not solved the problem yet. What is the Public Works department, the County Administrator and the County Commission willing to do to solve these issues that affect a near majority of the 880 homes and condos in Tarpon Woods? After a few more inches of rain the "connector road" Tarpon Woods Boulevard will become partially impassible and begin affecting residents in Bridlewood, Oak Trails and Ridgemoor by cutting off a significantly traveled road. 

How many more times will the Public Works department have to send employees out to put up the "High Water" signs on our roads before we address the Brooker Creek flow and drainage to Lake Tarpon impediments and really solve the problem once and for all? What can I as a resident of Tarpon Woods do to help find a solution to this annual nightmare? What can CNCN do to help find a solution to this community's public problem? What needs to be done? 

I would like to officially request that at a minimum, a street pump similar to the one on Toniwood be installed on the west end of Brian Road north in the storm drains. to pump the water out of the lake behind Brian Road North into the storm drains on Tarpon Woods Boulevard. This will reduce the flooding on Brian Road and Toniwood as the lakes behind Toniwood and Brian Road North are connected and the two issues are related. Historically the storm drains along Tarpon Woods Boulevard from the stop sign at Brian Road to East Lake Road rarely overflow into the streets and should have the capacity to move the water away from the flood areas. Obviously this is a temporary solution but should prove adequate to reduce the possibility of street flooding.

I will make myself available to meet and discuss a solution as necessary. We need your assistance now! Best regards, 

Don Ewing, Jr.

Resident of Tarpon Woods 


Council of North County Neighborhoods, Inc.

Cell Phone 727-560-5586



The upgrade for the flood control has begun on Toniwood.....should be done by April 15.

7/1/2010 Work has been completed, landscaping and finishing touches are done... 



You probably noticed the construction signs go up for Toniwood. Here is an update from the public works department: 

On Toniwood...
1. Pre-construction meeting held on Monday (1/4/10)
2. Message boards are anticipated to be put up tomorrow to advise residents of planned lane closure for Monday (1/11)
3. Mobilization of contractor anticipated for tomorrow with some jack & boring work taking place
4. Next week is anticipated to be the first full week of construction
5. Anticipated construction duration is 3 months

This is the second project which came out of the recommendations and it is listed as Priority 4.  This is the last one for now that we have planned.  All other projects that we have looked at will require some kind of easement from the golf course.  This project should really help Toniwood recover after a storm.

1/10/09 The SWiftmud study scheduled for completion on of before 12/31/08 will not be completed until late February 2009, according to Commissioner Susan Latvala. 


September 2008

TBE has determined HOLDING PONDS WILL NOT SOLVE THE FLOODING experienced by Annwood Rd, Rosewood Rd, Toniwood Lane and Brian Road North.  What this means for OUR community is that the County wlll not be pursuing the purchase of the golf course to destroy it and place holding ponds on it. The county has officially announced it will be withdrawing the grant application and will not be pursuing the purchase of the course. You may read more about the announcement by clicking on the link below. It will connect you to the St Pete Times article published Saturday 9/29/2007.



TWAC strongly believes the answer may lie within the larger study by SWIFTMUD of the entire Booker Creek Watershed  which is currently underway. This study should be completed by December 2008. It is possible, SWIFTMUD may make changes upstream from our area which could drastically relieve the flooding issues in the Toniwood Area! We believe it is important for our community to be involved at whatever level possible with this study. Below is an email from Mr. Peter Yauch, Assistant County Administrator confirming this possiblity. He writes:


I can state that “The County is not considering the purchase of the golf course.” and I regret it if that seemed not to be the case in my previous e-mail.

The conveyance scenarios as described at the public meeting last September would need to travel across (or under) some golf course property, and I would assume that some sort of easement would be necessary to do so.  That would have to be negotiated with the golf course owners.  The intention is to allow the golf course to be able to continue to operate as an 18-hole golf course.

Ideally, the on-going SWFWMD study might identify some alternatives that would divert water away from the Tarpon Woods area, reducing or eliminating any of the major work required on the golf course property and making the whole issue moot.  But, we won’t know the answers until the SWFWMD study wraps up at the end of 2008.

I hope this clarifies our approach to this project.


Peter J. Yauch, P.E.

Assistant County Administrator

Pinellas County

315 Court Street, Sixth Floor

Clearwater, Florida   33756

Phone: (727) 464-3485

Fax: (727) 464-4384 

In the mean time, the county has assured us they will be more responsive to our community's needs should we incur a substantial rain event causing flooding in Toniwood area!



Here is the latest update from our monthly meetings with the county commissioners: The county public works department provided these resolutions to the flooding issues in TW. Please pass on to your membership as appropriate.

Phase I (the back-up flapper valves) is complete.  (Toniwood)

We anticipate starting construction on phase II (the bypass pipe) within the next two months. 

We are reviewing the SWFWMD report, but have not identified any additional projects at this time.  We anticipate phase II making a significant improvement in the Toniwood area. 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!