County commissioners voted unanimously to accept a state grant to make access improvements at Peck Sink Trail and construct an overlook platform. The grant application was originally approved in 2019. The project is expected to cost the county $41,240 of the estimated $206,200 total. The $164,960 grant is offered by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) Recreational Trail Program. The county’s match will come from District 2 parks impact fees.
Led by the Sensitive Lands Department, the project will construct the 1,600 foot Peck Sink pedestrian trail and 320 square-foot overlook platform, and refurbish an existing wall for maintenance of the new structure. An ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliant parking space will also be constructed.
The questions and concerns voiced during the February 9, 2021 meeting centered around littering and unauthorized access when the park would be closed. Commissioner John Allocco said he would also like to see the inclusion of video surveillance and license plate scanners to discourage vandalism and littering, as well as having the ability to fine offenders. Allocco pointed out that “People do what’s inspected, not what’s expected.”
Peck Sink is a unique geological feature located southwest of Brooksville off of Wiscon Road adjacent to Mobley Road. There is between 40 and 60 feet of relief at Peck Sink. The geological feature is actually a series of sinks leading to a main sink that ultimately drains into the Florida aquifer. The preserve itself is 112 acres and was acquired in 2006 and 2008 for the main purpose of groundwater protection.