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destination for divers and anglers,” said JD Dickenson, CCA Florida Habitat Committee chairman. “With the reef acting as refuge for forage fish, there is no telling what will come to make a home at the new reef.” The reef’s designer, Chris O’Hare, read about the tragedy in The Palm Beach Post and volunteered to help. “I am a sculptor by trade and I challenged myself to create a marine habitat that was relatively easy to create, easy to deploy, and maximized the amount of bio-activity possible in a small footprint,” said O’Hare. “I wanted the reef module to do all that and still look like it was part of a natural geophysical landscape.” Each cell in the Harris reef begins with a 2,000-pound base used to attach it firmly to the ocean floor. The cells are composed of Portland and aluminate cement, weigh anywhere from 4,000 to 6,000 pounds and are about 6 feet wide by 8 feet long. They vary in height from 5 to 8 feet high. “Nothing is ever going to replace Andrew, but it’s an effort to honor his memory in a way that will benefit the community as his life would have,” said Andrew’s father, Scott Harris, the foundation’s president. “It helped to have a focus, instead of just a complete emptiness. Something to focus on, to work on.” The new reef site is expected to positively impact local economies by enticing anglers and divers who utilize local boat charters, hotels, restaurants and other amenities. According to Alan Richardson, chairman of the Organization for Artificial Reefs based in Tallahassee, Florida, for every dollar spent locally on an artificial reef, $138 comes back into local communities. In addition to the Building Conservation Trust, the Andrew “Red” Harris Foundation is partnering on the $78,000 project with Palm Beach County, the Town of Jupiter, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Palm Beach County Fishing Foundation, Jupiter Dive Center, and REEF CELLS. Visit http://andrewredharrisfoundation.org for more information. BISBEE’S CONSERVATION JOURNAL Q1/Q2 • 2016 77


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