From the time when the Tocobaga and Timucuan Indians roamed the Pinellas County, Florida, peninsula, the area now known as Wall Springs Park has been a gathering spot for recreation seekers for more than a century.
A historical, natural spring once used as a spa and bathing area, the park includes a viewing area, boardwalk, natural trails, and a 35-foot observation tower for a scenic view of the Gulf of Mexico. Cardno has partnered with Pinellas County for over 15 years to develop the vision for expanding Wall Springs Park from 84 acres to 209 acres.
Because of its location on the Gulf of Mexico and its varied topography, the additions encompass a wide variety of native habitats and associated plant and animal life. These include sandhill cranes, xeric scrub, mangrove forest, freshwater wetlands, pine flatwoods and salt marsh. Cardno worked closely with the Southwest Florida Water Management District to delineate wetlands, providing the appropriate buffer for trails and buildings.
In addition to the natural resources present, eleven known prehistoric archeological sites exist on park grounds. In 2016, Cardno completed a cultural assessment survey on the property, and the archeological evidence recovered suggested the area was used by prehistoric people from the late Archaic period (roughly 1,000 BC) through the Woodland period (roughly 1,000 BC to 1,000 AD) to the Mississippi period (roughly 800 AD to 1,600 AD). The project area represents one of the few parts of coastal Pinellas County with intact archaeological deposits that have not been completely disturbed by urban development and offer a rare example of the prehistoric archaeological record that once covered much of coastal Pinellas.
In addition, Cardno provided:
- Roadway design and plans
- Paved trail design and plans
- Natural trail design and plans
- Sidewalk design and plans
- Timber pier rehabilitation
- Coastal protection evaluation and design
- Parking lot and site design
- Utility design
- Boundary and topographic survey
- Wetland delineation
- Bid-phase services
- Construction support
Cardno’s Wall Springs Coast Addition Project was recently recognized as the APWA West Coast Branch Project of the Year - Historical Restoration/Preservation.