Highway 98 is a vital artery running through the heart of Franklin County. But portions of the road are only a few feet away from the sea, leaving it vulnerable to daily erosion and tidal surge from hurricanes. Parts of it have been washed out in past storms. Now, leaders are looking to a new solution: nature.
Every year, hurricanes and coastal erosion threaten the 12-mile stretch of highway between Carrabelle and Eastpoint. The road is a designated hurricane evacuation route, and already millions of dollars have been spent trying to protect it. But a new effort relies on a unique solution: Nature. Instead of more concrete rubble and seawalls, the Apalachee Regional Planning Council (ARPC) will oversee a 20-acre reef installation near the shore.