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Tamiami Trail (US-41) was constructed across the Everglades in the late 1920s, connecting Miami to Naples and, ultimately, to Tampa.  It was a dam across the River of Grass, blocking the flow of water into what would be Everglades National Park.  By the late 1980s, northeast Shark River Slough was exhibiting signs of chronic water deprivation and habitat degradation.  Further downstream, Florida Bay was suffering from extreme hypersalinity and seagrass die-off as a result of reduced freshwater flow through the park. In 1989, the park developed a plan to restore freshwater flow into northeast Shark River Slough by building a 1-mile bridge.  That bridge was finally completed in 2014 and further modifications of Tamiami Trail resulted in the additional bridging of 2.3 miles to the west of the 1-mile bridge.  These bridges have allowed for enormous increases in flow restoration into northeast Shark River Slough, already resulting in a transformation of the marsh plant community toward a more natural state.  Over time and with additional restoration projects such as the Everglades Reservoir to be built south of Lake Okeechobee, these bridges will allow for greatly enhanced flows through Everglades National Park and the mangrove coast into Florida Bay.

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