On Saturday, OUC took hundreds of concrete structures from the construction site of its net zero St. Cloud Operations & Maintenance Center, and instead of having them dumped in a landfill, found a sustainable use for them. They created an artificial reef project with 800,000 pounds of concrete off the coast of Ponce Inlet in Volusia County.

Transported on a 120-foot barge, OUC’s 800,000 pounds of concrete and 25 tons of granite donated by Shell, were deployed 2.75 miles offshore from Volusia County’s Ponce Inlet’s Lighthouse Point Park. The materials will create a habitat that will attract and sustain a wide variety of fish, shrimp and crab species for decades.

This is the second reef created with concrete from OUC’s St. Cloud Operations & Maintenance Center construction site. In 2019, 400,000 pounds of concrete were repurposed as ballast in the sinking of a cargo ship off the coast of Fort Pierce, OUC’s first partnership in an artificial reef project. In March 2022, OUC donated 50,000 pounds of precast underground utility junction boxes to St. Cloud Fire Rescue to be used in confined-spaces training.