On the way home I stopped by the small lot on the north-east corner of Quadrangle and University to look at what had happened to the wooded lot. They're using it as a holding area for fill dirt. The mound of dirt pretty much covers the entire lot and is as high as the tree tops use to be, when there were trees here. They've buried vent pipes to let the methane from the decaying matter (trees and other vegetation) that they knocked down and shredded and then just covered over with all the dirt. This is, of course, wetlands, just like the larger lot being worked across the street.
Palm Parkway, Four Days Later
I went back up Palm Parkway to document what had happened since my visit Palm Sunday. The land hwas been further cleared, and a retaining pond built in the center to hold water being picked up from around the land.The original bulldozers had been picked up and in their place were newer dozers with solid blades for moving dirt.
A tall crane has been delivered to the construction site, and a starter pylon driven into the soil. All of this is now next to I-4, on the other side of a chain link fence. It looks more and more like an overpass is being built that will tie into Palm Parkway at this point. Where it would tie into on the other side is pure guesswork on my part, but International Drive South is on the other side of I-4 at this point as is Orlando Premium Outlets. Looks like I'll need to drive over to that side of I-4 and investigate further.
Looking north and east up Palm Parkway at this point you see the Peabody and parts of the Orange County Convention Center poking above the trees. In the middle foreground you can see orange seedlings planted. I don't know if I'd eat any oranges harvested from trees growing in this area. I also doubt they'll live long enough to start to produce fruit before the ground they're growing in is torn up and covered over with development.
While tramping about the heavy construction I saw a sandy area with prickly pears (Indian fig) blooming. This is just to remind us that Florida has a wide variety of ecologies. You can quickly walk from dense palmetto undergrowth to dry sandy areas where cacti grow back to wetlands where small cypress grow.
In the short distance I walked up and down Palm Parkway where the road construction is going full tilt, I was reminded of the collision of old Florida with new. This old cattle gate closes off a private drive leading back into a heavily wooded area. The sign advertises 105 acres for sale. Right across the street I found that the road construction crew had extended the temporary barrier a good 100 yards on the south side back east. The lush vegetation hasn't been knocked down yet. Cars whizz by, their drivers and passengers oblivious to the subtle beauty.
I had all three cameras with me today; E-1, E-3, and E-P2. Post processing in Lightroom 4 and Silver Efex Pro 2.