UCF and state park system partnering on research facility

The University of Central Florida on Tuesday said it was partnering with the Florida state parks system to open a research facility in a first-of-its-kind agreement.

UCF officials said they plan to take over a former restaurant building in Econfina River State Park in rural Taylor County and convert it into a research facility. The facility will be about an hour’s drive southeast of Tallahassee.

UCF’s National Center for Integrated Coastal Research will lead the new center.

The partnership with the Florida Park Service will allow anthropology students to dig up precolonial sites. Civil engineering students will be able to study storm surge and biology students can examine the park’s habitats, UCF officials said.