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McIntosh Park upgrades will have stormwater benefits too

McIntosh Park is officially getting two miles of trails as well as a wildlife viewing observation tower.

The park, which lies on 363 acres at 775 East Knights Griffin Road, has long been a passive recreational park. The goal is to transform it into a facility that both highlights the beauty of nature and offers unique experiences for those who attend. Approximately 120 acres of the park have been used as stormwater treatment from the City of Plant City’s canal system via an agreement with SWFWMD.

It opened to the public in 2015 and had rudimentary trails cut into the grass at the site. Over the past month, massive changes have furthered the immense upgrade to the land. The current construction all lies under Phase 1 of the project. Trail paths have been cleared at the site and a surface material will be applied to make it more convenient to walkers. The city is building two miles of trails as well as an observation tower at the property.


The city wants McIntosh to become a method of developing an integrated water management solution for the community. It essentially will act as stormwater treatment, which will balance the water supply via a natural habitat preserve. The city aims to expand the wetlands on the property and improve the hydrology of the area so “the stormwater that is routed offline in the southeastern corner will be treated and reduce 3,000 pounds of nitrogen and 1,500 pounds of phosphorus from the Hillsborough River,” according to the city.