Saturday, January 19, 2019

There’s More To The Story

Golden Gate Boulevard Wins Award

The Golden Gate Boulevard Design-Build Improvement Project (east of Wilson Boulevard to 18th Street East) won an Honor Award in the Transportation Roadways Category for the 2018 Florida Region Design-Build Awards from Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA) Florida Region, Inc. The design-build team for the county project was Ajax Paving Industries of Florida, LLC and Stantec Consulting. Sub-contractors Guymann Construction performed the stormwater drainage system upgrades; Thomas Marine Construction handled the bridge widening portion of the project; On-Grade constructed the earthwork, sub-grade and base rock within the project; and Tincher Concrete Construction placed all the sidewalk and driveways for the project.

The approximately two-mile section of Golden Gate Boulevard was widened from a two-lane rural roadway to a four-lane urban roadway.  An urban roadway includes curbs and gutters along the outside lanes and along the medians. Other features include turn lanes at every side street with U-turn accommodations, and the widening of the bridge over the Golden Gate Main Canal from two lanes to four lanes.

With traffic projections of more than 29,000 vehicles per day by the year 2035 (according to the 2035 Long Range Transportation Plan), having the roadway widened to four lanes not only alleviates traffic congestion but also helps with added safety improvements including on-street bike lanes and 6-foot sidewalks on both sides of the roadway, along with school bus stop features (including bike racks at intersections and a shelter at Golden Gate Boulevard and 16th Street SE).

For more information, call the Collier County Transportation Engineering Division at 239-252-8192.


Red Tide Science to Capitol Hill

Red Tide Science Mote Marine Laboratory’s leader shared red tide science to inform national policymakers on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Mote President & CEO Dr. Michael P. Crosby served as a panelist during a red tide briefing at the Capitol to provide an overview of Florida red tide, discuss Mote’s current rapid response efforts to the ongoing bloom, and present a vision for the future with the exploration of new mitigation strategies and creation of an independent, Florida-based Marine and Freshwater Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) Center.

Ocean Conservancy and Citizens’ Climate Lobby hosted the briefing, with honorary hosts U.S. senators Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio.

After presenting an overview of the scientific understanding of Florida red tide caused by the alga Karenia brevis, Crosby discussed the research and rapid response activities aided by recently announced State of Florida funding, including.

  • Assessing impacts to southwest Florida fisheries and launching a major stock enhancement program;
  • Ramping up response capabilities for sea turtle and marine mammal strandings;
  • Determining airborne toxin impacts to humans;
  • Increasing water quality monitoring; and
  • Testing innovative mitigation approaches for red tide.

Mote — an independent, nonprofit, marine science institution — leads innovative red tide research and shares results objectively as possible, informing federal and state legislators, resource management agency leaders, and others who make societal decisions relevant to the oceans and the communities that depend on them. Mote’s research, monitoring and public information on red tide are made possible, in great part, through competitive government grants and appropriations.

During the panel, Crosby thanked senators Rubio and Nelson for hosting the briefing and also recognized Congressman Vern Buchanan for his relentless attention to addressing red tide. “Mr. Buchanan has long been a leader and champion in fighting red tide with a strong record of legislative support for funding much-needed red tide research and mitigation efforts,” stated Crosby.


DAS Celebrates $20 Adoptions Through October

Domestic Animal Services (DAS) works hard to find loving homes for all of kinds of animals at the shelter, but this month the focus is on our canine pals. October is Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog Month, and we encourage you to make your house a home for one of our many four-legged friends.

DAS is offering shelter dog adopters huge savings throughout October. All dogs currently in adoption will be just $20 the whole month. Adoptions include spay/neuter surgery, microchip, age appropriate vaccinations, flea treatment, heartworm test, FELV test and 30 days of free pet insurance. That’s a value of more than $400.

Adoption hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the DAS shelter at 7610 Davis Blvd., Naples, Florida 34104. The Immokalee shelter at 405 Sgt. Joe Jones Road, Immokalee, Florida 34142, is open for adoptions from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.

For more information, please call DAS at (239) 252-PETS (7387) or go to CollierPets.com.


Be Bear Wise

In fall, Florida black bear activity increases as bears begin a natural process of putting on fat for the winter. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) reminds people to be BearWise to help prevent conflicts with Florida’s largest land mammal.


Understand Medicare Benefits

The Medicare Open Enrollment Period began this month, and future and current Medicare beneficiaries are invited to attend free presentations about the ins and outs of Medicare in Collier County.  The presentations will feature professionally trained counselors of the SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) program.  SHINE is a Medicare counseling program offered locally through the Area Agency on Aging for Southwest Florida (AAASWFL).

“Understanding Medicare and Medicare Changes” will be offered six times in October at the following dates and locations (advance registration not requied):

Oct. 17 9:00 a.m.-10:30 a.m.

Marco Island Lutheran Church 525 N.

Collier Blvd., Marco Island Fla. 34145

Oct. 23 11:00 a.m.- 12:30 p.m.

Trilogy Memory Care of Naples 2626

Goodlette Frank Rd. N., Naples, Fla. 34103

Oct. 23 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

Parkinson’s Association of Southwest Florida 5926 Premier Way, Ste. 114, Naples, Fla. 34109

Oct. 24. 11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Trilogy Arden Court 6125 Rattlesnake

Hammock, Naples, Fla. 34113

The “Understanding Medicare and Medicare Changes” presentation covers the basics of Medicare for those soon to be eligible as well as those currently on Medicare.  Participants will

learn the basics of Medicare Parts A, B, C and D, and learn about the upcoming changes to Medicare for 2019. Presenters will also discuss the new Medicare cards which have begun distribution to Florida residents. SHINE counselors will be available to answer questions after the presentation.

  To receive help from SHINE, individuals may call to schedule appointments at designated SHINE counseling sites, attend enrollment events in their local communities, or arrange to speak with a trained SHINE counselor by calling the AAASWFL Elder Helpline 1-866-96-ELDER (1-866-413-5337). For a listing of SHINE counseling sites and enrollment events, please visit www.floridashine.org.


Ideas will Bloom at Naples Yard and Garden Show

Do you want to learn more about how to successfully grow orchids or bonsai? Perhaps you simply want to learn about unique container design? Explore all this and more at the 15th Annual Naples Yard and Garden Show, Saturday, October 20, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday, October 21, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Collier County Museum at the Government Center grounds, 3331 Tamiami Trail E, Naples, Florida 34112.

Ask us your toughest questions at our Plant Clinic, where Master Gardeners will be ready to provide you with plant care tips and disease/pest diagnostics for your new purchases and your existing landscape (please make sure you bring your plant/pest samples in a sealed bag).

Saturday, October 20

10 – 11 a.m.

Dr. Doug Caldwell, Commercial Horticulture & Landscape Entomologist

Trees and Hurricanes: Lessons from Wilma and Irma

11 – Noon

Twyla Leigh, County Extension Director

Orchids 101

1 – 2 p.m.

Janet DeLiso, Master Gardener

Vermicomposting

2 – 3 p.m.

Judith Giandelone & Phil Krieg, Naples Bonsai Society

All You Ever Wanted to Know About Bonsai and Then Some

Sunday, October 21

10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Sally Stein, Director of Public Programs, National Audubon’s Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary

What Really Lurks in the Swamp and Why you Should Know

11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Trisha Aldridge, 4-H Coordinator

Honey Bee Care

1 – 2 p.m.

Maria Schoenfelder, Master Gardener

Unique Container Designs

Admission, payable in cash only, is $5.00 for adults; children 12 and under are admitted free. Be sure to hold on to your tickets as you might be the winner of one of the hourly door prizes courtesy of show vendors (you need to be present to win).  All proceeds from the Naples Yard and Garden Show are used to support the Master Gardeners’ education programs.

For more information, visit collier.ifas.ufl.edu or call 239-252-4800.


Zoo donates $75,000 for python research

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida and Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens established a partnership to advance Burmese python research and education in Southwest Florida.

The two longtime neighbors on the Gordon River Greenway in Naples will study the impact of Burmese pythons on native wildlife. The Zoo has committed $75,000 over the next three years to fund the Conservancy’s research initiatives.

Since 2013, the Conservancy’s research team, led by environmental science project manager Ian Bartoszek, and its research partners have been studying Burmese python biology and behavior in Southwest Florida, using this information to develop a database and management strategies to control this invasive species.

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