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Environment | Conservation

The MPO incorportates accessibility, equity, and public health in project priorities. The MPO must balance planned growth and environmental protection. 

Efficient roadways and public transit affect access to jobs, education, and healthcare opportunities. Efficient roadways and public transit affect access to jobs, education, and healthcare opportunities. Increasing access can reduce the negative health effects of long car trips, such as physical inactivity and high blood pressure.

-U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Relationship to Public Health, 2018

Sarasota and Manatee Counties are home to many environmental assets protected by the local, state, and federal governments, such as the Quick Point Nature Preserve, Myakka River State Park, and the Passage Key National Wildlife Refuge. These protected assets are shown in green. 

Wetlands can be found throught the region. They are shown as palustrine (inland wetlands), estuarine (estuary zones), lacustrine (lake zones), riverine (river zones), and marine (gulf zones). 

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There are 26 species considered threatened, endangered, at risk, and/or protected that call the Sarasota / Manatee region home. 

Protected species are often found in critical habitats. There are many critical habitat zones throughout he Sarasota / Manatee region. The MPO aims to prioritize transportation projects that minimize impacts on these environmentally important areas. 

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Florida Scrub-Jay. Photo Courtesy of Florida Fish and Wildlife

Florida Scrub Jay

Florida Panther Kittens at White Oak

Florida Panther Kittens

West Indian Manatee. Photo courtesy of US Fish and Wildlife Service.

West Indian Manatee

Environment/Conservation Documents