Butterflies Fly Free At Port Everglades
November 20, 2006

Brightly colored flowers, palm trees and native shrubbery are attracting more than just cruise passengers to Broward County's Port Everglades.  The Port's Public Works Section has re-landscaped Marinelli Gardens, located inside Port Everglades on Eller Drive, with new flowering vegetation that is attracting butterflies.

"It is unusual to see this slice of green space in an industrial seaport," says Port Director Phillip C. Allen.  "We like to keep it maintained for aesthetic purposes and to give people at the Port a quiet place to enjoy a picnic lunch.  The butterflies are an added visual bonus."

Many of the plants and vegetation at Marinelli Gardens were uprooted during Hurricane Wilma last year.  The Public Works staff renovated the area by clearing debris, replanting trees, adding shrubbery such as crotens, and repainting.  The fountains, long defunct because they were difficult to maintain and wasted water, were converted to planters to attract butterflies and add color.  Future plans include replacing the older picnic tables with those made from recycled materials.

Although Marinelli Gardens is not open to the public due to security restrictions at the seaport, the park is enjoyed by crew members from visiting ships, people who work at the Port and sometimes even cruise passengers.
As one of South Florida's leading economic engines, Port Everglades is the gateway for international trade and cruise vacations.  The Port Everglades Department is a self-supporting Enterprise Fund of Broward County government with operating revenues of approximately $105 million annually.  It does not rely on local tax dollars for operations. The Port provides more than 15,000 direct jobs and generates $2.87 billion in business activity and $879.5 million in personal income annually in Broward County.  

More information on Port Everglades, which is governed by the Broward County Board of County Commissioners, is available on the Internet at www.broward.org/port, e-mailing PortEverglades@broward.org, or by calling 954-523-3404.