Burns & McDonnell's wetlands plan, designed to improve the quality of water entering the Everglades, won an Engineering Excellence Award from the ACEC. Photo: Visit Florida

A 26 ½ square mile wetlands project designed to help save the Florida Everglades ecosystem has been named the most significant U.S. engineering achievement in the 39th annual Engineering Excellence Awards competition, sponsored by the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC).

Kansas City-based Burns & McDonnell received the ACEC Grand Conceptor Award for the project. The firm designed the wetlands to improve the quality of water entering the Everglades from adjacent agricultural properties and other sources. Known officially as Stormwater Treatment Area No. 3/4 in Broward and West Palm Beach Counties, the treatment area is larger than the island of Manhattan, and is the largest constructed wetlands in the world.

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