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Public Works


Cape Coral's 400-mile canal system is a definitive feature of our City and one of our most vital economic assets. Our canals offer waterfront living and recreation, protect our homes from floods, enhance property values, supply us with irrigation water, and attract wildlife to our City.

Cape Coral's citizens recognize the canal system's impact on their quality of life and are highly protective of the area's aquatic assets. This protective attitude is our canal network's first line of defense against pollution, as calls from alert residents are often the first indication of a canal-related problem. Our citizens' concern for their canals led to the formation of the Cape Coral Canalwatch Volunteer Program in 1995.

Canalwatch is a proactive component of the City's canal management effort. Program goals are to educate local homeowners about water quality issues, open up communication between citizens and water managers, and increase residents' sense of ownership of our common resources. Each month, volunteers collect environmental data and water samples throughout our City. The samples and data are then brought to Cape Coral's water quality laboratory for analysis. This volunteer monitoring process provides information about canal dynamics throughout the City, enabling better management of our waters.

Canal Sunset cropped   photo courtesy of Jeanette Chupack

(Photo by Jeanette Chupack)

Map of Canalwatch sites (pdf format)

Florida WaterAtlas
Canalwatch sampling locations and data are easily viewed. 

Download the Canalwatch brochure (pdf format) 

The "Canal Current" is a quarterly newsletter featuring articles about issues related to Cape Coral's canal system, a calendar of upcoming environment-related events, and the results of Canalwatch sample analyses.

Current newsletter: 3rd Quarter 2021 (pdf format) 

Archived newsletters (pdf format)

Florida Lakewatch, the model for both our program and Lee County Hyacinth Control's Pondwatch program, publishes several documents that can help you understand the different aspects of water quality.  Click here to see water quality documents

We always welcome new volunteers! If you're interested, please call Harry at 574-0785.
bottles  croppedbottles  cropped Carey Parks takes a secchi reading

Canalwatch bottles ready to be distributed. 

Canalwatch volunteer using a secchi disk to measure water clarity. (photo by Ruth Parks)