Buoyed by the state of Florida’s decision to buy 181,000 acres of land in the Everglades Agricultural Area to reconnect Lake Okeechobee with the lower Everglades, the 300 people attending the Everglades Coalition Conference in Miami on Jan. 8-11 found reasons for optimism in the decades-long battle to protect and revitalize southern Florida’s vast wetland ecosystem despite the gloomy economic climate. Gov. Charlie Crist (R) negotiated to buy the land from United States Sugar Corp., Clewiston, Fla., and announced the deal on June 24. Despite its $1.34-billion cost and the floundering economy, he insisted in a speech to the conference
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.