City and County Move Forward with Sandhill Habitat Restoration at Boulware Springs Nature Park and Sweetwater Preserve


Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail Detour Map.

The City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department and the Alachua County Environmental Protection Department are happy to announce the upcoming habitat restoration projects at Boulware Springs Nature Park, located at 3300 SE 15th St., and at Sweetwater Preserve, located at 95 SE Williston Rd. The long-term goal of the restoration is to bring back the former sandhill habitat, and restore biodiversity to the site. This work begins Monday, Feb.16, with the removal of hardwood trees that are not native to the sandhill habitat.

The media is invited to meet with city and county staff Friday, Feb.13 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the north entrance of Boulware Springs Nature Park.

The upcoming tree removal requires the temporary closure of the portion of the Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail which is adjacent to the park. Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail bicycle and pedestrian traffic will be re-routed around the closed segment of the trail for an undetermined, but short, period of time beginning Monday, Feb.16. Barricades, signage and maps showing the detour are posted on and Additionally, the east trail and trailhead at Sweetwater Preserve, adjacent to the Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail, will be closed during tree removal. Active tree removal is expected to take approximately one or two weeks, but the restoration will be ongoing for a number of years.  The south entrance to Boulware Springs will remain open, and the Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail between Boulware Springs and Hawthorne will not be affected throughout the restoration process.

The project history and details are available online at

Please contact Geoff Parks, natural resource management program coordinator, at or 352-393-8437, or Sandra Vardaman, land conservation biologist, Alachua County Environmental Protection Department, at 352-264-6803 or for more information.

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