What is BURT?

BURT members canoeing in Pond Apple Slough 
BURT members canoeing in Pond Apple Slough,

a Broward County Blueway

Broward Urban River Trails (BURT) is an organization comprised of citizens, elected officials, and government agency personnel dedicated to the protection of the natural resources of the New River system and the economic revitalization of the area.

Greenways and Blueways for Florida

The BURT concept had its beginnings in Florida's statewide effort to preserve greenways for conservation and recreation. In 1994, under the leadership of A Thousand Friends of Florida, a group of citizens came together to form a Broward greenway and to hold a visioning workshop to determine what they wanted out of their greenway. Since that time a coordinating council lead by an executive director has brought the BURT concept into reality. Greenways are usually defined as corridors of protected open space managed for conservation and recreation. In Broward County, many of the greenways are actually "blueways" that follow rivers, canals, wetlands and lakes. Greenways and blueways can be as wide as a watershed or as narrow as a footpath. They link forests, parks, cultural and historic sites with each other and in some cases, with populated areas. They not only protect environmentally sensitive lands and wildlife, but also give people the chance to enjoy the outdoors close to home.

Restoring the River

Looking at the New River as a system of interlocking pieces gives a new perspective on the county's efforts to clean and restore it. What happens in one part of the river affects the whole system, so river restoration is a central focus of the work being done by BURT. The Water Resources Division and BURT have joined forces on a variety of efforts focusing on educating the public about our waterways. These include:

Secchi Dip in 2000
Great North American
Secchi Dip In 2000

  • Great North American Secchi Dip In - The Dip-In is an annual, international effort where thousands of volunteers test water bodies across North America to provide a "snapshot" of water transparency (water clarity). The Summer 2000 Dip In marked the second year of our participation with most of the data collected from sites in the New River system, as well as the Intracoastal Waterway and the Hillsboro Canal at Deerfield Island Park. Maps made each year from the collected data have shown considerable regional differences in transparency. Transparency can be lessened by excessive algae growth or suspended sediment particles, and therefore is a measure of some forms of pollution from the land surrounding the body of water