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|Acacia Reservation Ecological Restoration Plan|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States Cleveland, Metroparks’ 22,000 acres of open space form one of the most interconnected, extensive urban park systems in the U.S. Encircling the city, these parks, trails, zoo, and recreational facilities are collectively known as Cleveland’s "Emerald Necklace." In 2012, a new jewel was added to this necklace: Acacia Reservation, a 155-acre property that had been a golf course, for the past 100 years. Euclid Creek, a tributary to Lake Erie, flows through the site. The watershed is home to over 60,000 people and has been greatly impacted by development, which in turn has impacted the health and function of the Creek, feeling the effects of urban runoff. Cleveland Metroparks wanted to restore the property to a natural state, and do so in a way that would encourage public access and stewardship, protect the Euclid Creek watershed, and create a landscape consistent with adjacent reservations along the "Emerald Necklace." The envisioned reservation not only regenerates the local ecology, but recreates a variety of habitats, including wetlands, woodlands, streams, and meadows. For help in transforming this suburban golf course into a natural and cultural resource, Cleveland Metroparks turned to Biohabitats. Biohabitats began by performing an assessment of site conditions, including soils, hydrology, ecology, and landform patterns. The project included a planning charrette with Metroparks staff to develop a consistent understanding of the Parks’ ecological restoration goals, and meetings to engage and inform the public. In addition to restoring native ecosystems, the Master Plan includes innovative stormwater management, green infrastructure, education, and interpretation of landscape change and ecological function.
|Acacia Reservation Ecological Restoration Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Acacia Reservation Restoration Project|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States When Cleveland Metroparks acquired a 155-acre former golf course in Lyndhurst, Ohio, they recognized its potential to enhance local ecology and become a new gem in the region’s “Emerald Necklace.” Metroparks envisioned the new “Acacia Reservation,” as a model urban ecological preserve that would provide wildlife habitat, filter and treat stormwater, and provide a unique opportunity for people to enjoy and appreciate the plants and wildlife that are native to northern Ohio. After working with Metroparks to craft a master plan to guide this transformation, Biohabitats initiated a design-build project to begin advancing the ecological restoration goals. The project involves restoring Euclid Creek which flows through the site, along with an intermittent stream to Euclid Creek, and headwater streams and wetlands which traversed portions of the former golf course and had been underlain by drainage tile. Decades of stormwater flows from the densely developed area adjacent to the site had caused the channels to become eroded, incised, and disconnected from their floodplains. Euclid Creek currently serves somewhat as a stormwater expressway to Lake Erie. This restoration not only helps provide better stormwater retention and treatment, it also fosters the regeneration of riparian areas and a whole new layer of urban ecology.
|Acacia Reservation Restoration Project||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Algae as Biofuel||The City of New York and Biohabitats investigated two approaches to using algae to remove excess nutrients wastewater treatment plant effluent before it enters Jamaica Bay. Because algae remove CO2 from water and the atmosphere inject oxygen into treated waters, using algae as a natural method to address heavy nutrient loads was validated as a sound and scalable strategy. Once the algae are removed from the water, however, what can they be used for? This study examined the feasibility of harvesting algae for use as biofuel. Algae from a pilot experiment at the City’s Rockaway wastewater treatment plant and algae from an Algal Turf Scrubber® (ATS™) system were examined for nutrient and carbon content, and the total biomass was estimated for the existing pilots and for the possibility of expanded efforts. This information was used to analyze the potential production of both biomass and bio-fuels. The researchers then analyzed the potential for scaling up the approach and how doing so could affect the relationship between algae and energy if these strategies were implemented at scale.||Algae as Biofuel||Hudson River Bioregion,||Bioworks,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Alger Park Stream Restoration|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States Alger Park is located in an area of Southeast Washington, DC where an estimated 32% of the watershed is impervious. Nestled within the park’s steep, forested slopes is a headwater stream that ultimately drains to the Anacostia River. Stormwater runoff from the 35-acre sewershed that surrounds the park had degraded the steam, causing severe erosion and channel instability. In an effort to help the District restore the stream’s stability, habitat, and water quality, Biohabitats developed a design to restore 1500 linear feet of the stream. The upstream portion of the stream is characterized by steeply eroding valley slopes and stream banks, severe channel incision, and numerous headcuts. The downstream portion is a depositional area for a significant volume of sediment scoured from upstream reaches. A combination of excessive unmanaged stormwater flows from outfalls and overland flow pathways, along with steep topography, highly erodible soils, and invasive vegetation, are contributing to the impairments observed in the stream and surrounding park land. Biohabitats began by assessing the watershed hydrology and stream geomorphology, existing natural resources, biological community, streambank erosion (BEHI), and stream stressors in the stream valley to anticipate load reductions and associated environmental uplift from the restoration. The team then created a design to return Alger Stream to a natural, self-sustaining stream that can resist stormflows generated in the developed watershed, and restore the ecological functions and habitat of the stream valley to the maximum extent practicable, while protecting the stormwater infrastructure that has been impacted by unabated erosion and deposition, and remove invasive species and re-establish a native plant community. The design approach was intended to improve ecological function to the extent practicable based on existing site constraints. The project site constraints largely derive from the steep slopes and confined valley through which Alger Stream flows. Establishment
|Alger Park Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Allegheny Riverfront Green Boulevard Study|| |
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania , United States As part of a team led by Sasaki Associates, Biohabitats led the ecological restoration, green infrastructure, and open space master planning components of the Allegheny Riverfront Green Boulevard Study for the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh. This six-mile stretch of riverfront, extending from downtown Pittsburgh to the city’s eastern edge, is dominated by an active freight rail, industrial and underutilized lands, and a few tightly knit, residential communities. Riverfront access to local residents is limited at best, and the ecological health of this important tributary to the Ohio River could be greatly improved with a more holistic approach to redevelopment. The Green Boulevard Study sought to transform the existing Allegheny Valley Railroad (AVR) right-of-way into a multi-modal green corridor which could include a bicycle-pedestrian paths and passenger rail service, while integrating stormwater management technologies in the existing rail freight corridor. The study included a housing master plan for a key riverfront site along the AVR right-of-way, as well as an open space plan to emphasize riverfront, habitat, recreation, and open space connections. Taking a “living infrastructure” approach to this planning study, Biohabitats highlighted opportunities for landscapes that provide multiple functions, from enlivening the community to enhancing habitat for wildlife, treating stormwater, and creating new connections to the River. Biohabitats provided a toolkit of living infrastructure practices that could be integrated throughout the study area, including stormwater BMPs, wastewater treatment wetlands, habitat patches, buffer areas, soil conditioning, floating wetlands, regenerative stormwater conveyance and more.
|Allegheny Riverfront Green Boulevard Study||Ohio River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Allen Fork Headwater Preliminary Study|| |
Boone County, Kentucky , United States Boone County Public Works, in partnership with the Northern Kentucky Sanitation District, commissioned a study to explore the potential for improving the management of stormwater flows, restoring creeks and floodplains, and providing passive recreation opportunities throughout the one square-mile headwater catchment of Allen Fork in Boone County, Kentucky. The county selected the multi-disciplinary Biohabitats’ team, which included the landscape architecture firm Human Nature. The impetus for this effort was the Darlington Farms Development at the downstream limit of the study area. The Homeowners Association was concerned about flooding and sedimentation of the development’s artificial lake, formed by the impoundment of Allen Fork. Consequently, the study focused on issues related to stormwater volume and sediment production in the watershed. The work included GIS data collection and analysis, field reconnaissance, a watershed-wide assessment of channel conditions, and preparation of a technical memorandum that delivered recommendations for stormwater management and ecosystem restoration. Biohabitats also helped the County Engineer assemble and coordinate a project steering committee.
|Allen Fork Headwater Preliminary Study||Ohio River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Boone County, Kentucky, United States||featured-project featured|
|Analyzing Landscape and Development in Alaska|| |
Fairbanks Northstar Borough, Alaska , United States Recognizing the inherent value of green infrastructure, the Fairbanks Northstar Borough in Alaska recently initiated a thorough review of its existing land resources. The review represents a critical step toward the development of a new comprehensive plan and land use map to help proactively steer growth within the fairly undeveloped, 7,444-square-mile Borough. Biohabitats was chosen to collect and review the rich geospatial data available and create base maps depicting soil suitability, wildlife habitat and migration corridors, wetland, riparian and river health, mining and forestry potential, and alternative energy potential. The base maps along with some alternative futures analysis will be used by the Borough to inform the municipality’s growth and greenspace planning.
|Analyzing Landscape and Development in Alaska||Conservation Planning,||Fairbanks Northstar Borough, Alaska, United States||featured-project featured|
|Antioch College Village Vision Planning|| |
Yellow Springs, Ohio , United States Founded in 1852, and one of the first co-educational colleges in the nation to offer equal educational opportunities to women and African Americans, Antioch College embraces inclusiveness and connectivity to this day. Evidence can be seen in the proposed Antioch College Village, a 160-home residential neighborhood for people with and without College affiliation that will be woven into the campus. The College intends for the Village to become a certified “Living Community” which adheres to the stringent standards established by the Living Future Institute for sustainable, equitable communities. To help the College realize its vision for this unique neighborhood, a planning team headed up by Consilience LLC led a three-day public design charrette with members of the campus community and citizens of Yellow Springs. Biohabitats brought a focus on ecology and water to the planning process, working with planners from Dover, Kohl & Partners and energy consultants, Integral Group. Biohabitats shared information about the flow of water through the campus, as well as the local and regional ecology, working with participants to explore ways to integrate low impact development, sustainable stormwater management, and ecological systems and functionality into the new neighborhood. Biohabitats also collaborated with charrette participants on ways to enhance connectivity between the campus, the greater community of Yellow Springs, and a nearby nature preserve. The final plan for the Antioch College Village now promotes preservation of mature tree canopy, integrates sustainable stormwater management practices in the landscape, celebrates local ecology, and enhances connectivity for people and nature.
|Antioch College Village Vision Planning||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Yellow Springs, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Aquatic Restoration & Invasive Species Management at 61 Smith Street|| |
Erie County, New York , United States Erie County, NY launched an effort to improve habitat quality along a stretch of the Buffalo River that was designated a Great Lakes Area of Concern. After contaminated sediment was removed from the river bottom, Biohabitats, working with Wendel, is helping the County to restore a section of degraded shoreline along the river. After designing an 800 linear foot reach along Red Jacket Park, the team then designed an additional 1,100 linear feet of shoreline located upstream. Biohabitats led the effort to design a “living shoreline” that would not only restore habitat and function, but would foster ongoing regeneration of the natural systems and processes that comprise a healthy, stable shoreline. The design aimed to improve fish and wildlife habitat by creating a mosaic of escape and forage habitat and restoring valuable shallow-water areas and their rich vegetation community. Biohabitats began by completing an ecological assessment of the 15-acre site, which included an invasive species inventory. Biohabitats’ design includes a series of rock weirs along the shoreline to encourage the deposition of sediment and replace critical shallow-water habitat that was lost during the dredging of contaminated sediment. Submerged aquatic vegetation and emergent vegetation will be planted to provide additional habitat. In riparian areas, invasive species are to be treated, and a “living” fence consisting of a complex of willows and sumac is planned along the park edge to limit encroachment from adjacent invasive species while providing habitat and a native seed source.
|Aquatic Restoration & Invasive Species Management at 61 Smith Street||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Erie County, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Arundel-on-the-Bay LID and Living Shoreline|| |
Annapolis, Maryland , United States Founded in 1890 on a peninsula bounded by the Chesapeake Bay and Fishing Creek, Arundel-on-the-Bay is a 300-acre community whose residents share a deep appreciation of the natural coastal environment, and a commitment to its protection. In 2010, the community partnered with the South River Federation to assess drainage and flooding issues, with the goal of implementing a variety of best management practices in the most critically needed areas. A 40-acre area with a series of roadside drainage ditches was identified as a top priority. During small storms, water would slip through the ditches and drain into Fishing Creek, untreated. During large storms, the ditches would become overwhelmed with stormwater volume and localized flooding would occur. To help the community address this top priority site, Biohabitats applied a regenerative stormwater conveyance approach to design, permit, and supervise the construction of two roadside swale retrofits to improve water conveyance, reduce localized flooding, and enhance water quality. In full collaboration with the community, Biohabitats crafted a design to convert the ditches into relatively flat swales with a repeated series of riffle grade controls and pools. A portion of road surface was removed to create a wider flow path. The design also involved excavating the underlying soil and replacing it with a bioretention mix to facilitate water quality improvements during frequently occurring storms of low volume. One of the swales was integrated into a shoreline erosion protection BMP termed a ‘living shoreline,’ which improved the biological function of the LID facility. The other swale was integrated into an existing community park, taking advantage of the park property during the infrequent large storm events for temporary floodwater storage.
|Arundel-on-the-Bay LID and Living Shoreline||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Annapolis, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Awbury Arboretum Natural Resource Restoration|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States
|Awbury Arboretum Natural Resource Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States|
|Baltimore City School Greening Program|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States Biohabitats helped the Baltimore City Department of Public Works develop plans for the "greening" of Yorkwood Elementary School. The project, which involved removing ¾ acre of impervious surface and planting the area with grass and trees, demonstrated the use of environmental site design (ESD) techniques as a way to help the City reach its stormwater permit requirements. The project was also selected by the University of Maryland as a site to use for researching the benefits of subsoiling, the process of decompacting soil and incorporating organic material to increase infiltration capacity. The project team worked closely with Yorkwood Elementary School and the Irvine Nature Center to incorporate some of the school’s master plan designs into this greening project. Biohabitats' design included a rain garden to capture and treat the runoff from portable classroom rooftops and an outdoor classroom area. These features also provide opportunities for public education regarding impervious surface reduction, ESD and site greening.
|Baltimore City School Greening Program||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Baltimore Green Network Plan|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States The City of Baltimore contracted Biohabitats to craft a Green Network Plan for a comprehensive and interconnected system of functional green spaces across the city. A key goal is to identify opportunities to leverage existing greening and revitalization programs associated with vacancy in the city, engaging non-profit and community partners through a strengthened and connected green infrastructure network. Biohabitats is leading an interdisciplinary planning team in a collaborative process to develop suitability and prioritization criteria for this green network plan. With both historical and contemporary planning initiatives in mind, the team is considering the complex and interdependent relationships of greenspace in the urban fabric through a lens of ecological function, connectivity, and community resilience. Unique to this project is our collaborative planning approach, working directly with the City Department of Planning on GIS analysis and public outreach. The consultant team is responsive to both the feedback of active community organizations as well as state and federal stakeholders in the creation of this green network plan which will act as a the foundation for future development, redevelopment, and greening initiatives across the city. The final green network plan celebrates the historic stream corridors that define the city’s landscape while connecting open space with safe and increasingly green corridors. It promotes healthy and safe access to active and passive open space for all city residents and increased ecological function of the unique natural resources that define the City of Baltimore.
|Baltimore Green Network Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Baltimore Harbor Algal Turf Scrubber® Pilot Project||Algal Turf Scrubber® (ATS™) technology involves the controlled use of natural algae to remove nutrients from water and convert them into easily harvested biomass. At the same time, ATS™ technology injects high concentrations of oxygen into the water and removes CO2 from the water and atmosphere. Biohabitats and the University of Maryland constructed a pilot-scale ATS™ system (300′ x 1′) along Baltimore’s Inner Harbor to determine how effective this technology is in partially addressing the city’s nutrient reduction goals and in supplying oxygen to receiving waters to prevent or ameliorate fish kills during low oxygen events. The ATS™ system consists of an attached algal community growing on screens in a shallow trough or raceway through which water is pumped in a manner that mimics a controlled stream ecosystem. The algal community provides water treatment by uptake of inorganic compounds in photosynthesis. Nutrients that are removed from the waterway are stored in the biomass of the algae growing on the screens. During the growing season, the algae are harvested weekly, thus removing nutrients from the waterway in their biomass. Because of the fast growth rate of algae on the ATS™, this technology can remove nutrients at a high rate. Baltimore Harbor, an extension of the Patapsco River on the Chesapeake Bay, is impaired by high nutrient loadings associated with human impacts to the estuary. While ATS™ technology has been shown to be an effective tool for the treatment of eutrophic waters, this pilot seeks to better understand process factors influencing performance and the potential for a system scale-up, as well as additional benefits such as oxygen enrichment for aquatic biota and the potential for creating biofuel from algal biomass. Started in January 2011, the Baltimore Harbor ATS™ system has been operated, maintained and monitored by Biohabitats consistently through||Baltimore Harbor Algal Turf Scrubber® Pilot Project||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Baltimore Healthy Harbor Initiative and Pilot Projects|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States The Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore, Inc. (WPB) envisions the city’s Inner Harbor as a “swimmable, fishable harbor” that will serve as a model sustainable waterfront park. To help bring this vision to life, Biohabitats worked with the WPB to craft a planning document called the “Healthy Harbor Initiative” (HHI). The HHI consists of goals and strategies that will transform the waterfront, creating a sustainable and engaging landscape that informs visitors about the ecological problems impacting the productivity of the Chesapeake Bay, and the cultural and economic prosperity it has historically provided. The HHI focuses on seven key areas: education and awareness; surface water; potable water; landscape and ecology; mobility; energy and climate change, and materials and waste. In addition to fulfilling WPB’s vision, the HHI aims to reduce potable water demand; stimulate the development of alternative transportation; and work towards climate neutrality, waste re-use, and use of only sustainably sourced materials among WPB member properties. The HHI led to the development of several water quality improvement and educational pilot projects in and around the Inner Harbor. Biohabitats designed, installed and implemented floating treatment wetlands, the first of the HHI’s innovative pilot projects to improve water quality and habitat. The area of wetlands was expanded tenfold in 2012 and has become a central feature of the water in the Inner Harbor. An interpretive sign was prepared to explain the importance of wetlands in estuarine ecosystems. Biohabitats also developed a concept to transform a dilapidated wharf into a living pier that cleans Harbor water, provides habitat and is an aesthetic attraction. Currently under design, the top of the pier will become a constructed tidal wetland. Harbor water will be pumped to the wetland, where microbial organisms will transform and filter pollutants. Waterfalls cascading over the perimeter of the
|Baltimore Healthy Harbor Initiative and Pilot Projects||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Baltimore Watershed Agreement Action Plan|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States In 2006, Baltimore City and Baltimore County signed the Second Regional Watershed Agreement, signifying the jurisdictions’ shared commitment to improving water quality within their shared watersheds. In an effort to help the City and County begin to put this commitment into action, Biohabitats worked with both entities to develop the Baltimore Watershed Agreement Action Plan. The intent was to develop, organize and prioritize concrete action items to address five topic areas of water quality improvement: stormwater, community greening, development/redevelopment, public health and trash. Biohabitats began by reviewing existing programs, studies and data, and assessing programmatic drivers such as the SWM Act of 2007, the City’s Sustainability Plan, TMDL requirements and Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems programs. Biohabitats also identified similarities and differences between City and County efforts to address the five topic areas. Relationship diagrams were prepared to illustrate connections and gaps and identify opportunities and roadblocks to collaboration.Agreement among the two jurisdictions and their various departments as well as numerous stakeholders was essential for the successful completion of the Action Plan. To build consensus, Biohabitats and team member Francis Flannigan facilitated numerous sessions with County and City staff, community groups and nonprofit organizations. The result of these efforts was the Baltimore Watershed Agreement Action Plan, a document which charts a course for a wide range of action items to improve water quality.
|Baltimore Watershed Agreement Action Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Barrensdale Outfall Restoration|| |
Anne Arundel County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats, along with subconsultant Century Engineering, provided the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works with design and construction phase services associated with the decommissioning of a Natural Resources Conservation Services Maryland 378 pond. The project involved embankment modification, crest weir design, pipe slip-lining, demonstration and achievement of credit for stormwater quality management, and safe conveyance of the 100-year storm along an unnamed tributary of Dividing Creek through a sand seepage wetland and Step Pool Storm Conveyance System complex. The project also reconnects the tributary to its floodplain, further enhances nutrient uptake along the stream, stabilizes the channel and banks, and improves the system’s ecological functions.
|Barrensdale Outfall Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Anne Arundel County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Barrio De Tubac Wastewater System|| |
Tubac, Arizona , United States Nestled in the Santa Cruz Valley, adjacent to a historic 18th century Spanish village, Barrio de Tubac is an upscale, master-planned community. Desiring wastewater treatment that would be appropriate, given the community’s location and proximity to nearby Tubac Presidio Park and Coronado National Forest, the developer sought an on-site system that would include constructed wetlands. The system would also need to meet all water quality standards set by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality for effluent water discharged into the ground and reclaimed for irrigation. Biohabitats designed a wastewater treatment system featuring constructed wetlands which at full build out is capable of processing 60,000 gallons per day. Currently, the system processes 8,500 to 10,000 gpd in Winter months. All wastewater from 327 residential units is collected using a small diameter collection system. Final effluent from the system is reused for landscape irrigation. This eliminates excessive use of precious potable water and provides long-term cost savings. In addition to meeting the development’s wastewater treatment needs, the system is well integrated into the development, blends aesthetically with local site conditions. It has also improved habitat. Many wildlife species, including songbirds, utilize the constructed wetland as habitat, adding beauty and biodiversity to the community.
|Barrio De Tubac Wastewater System||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Tubac, Arizona, United States||featured-project featured|
|Baton Rouge Lakes Master Plan|| |
Baton Rouge, Louisiana , United States In the 1930s, as part of a Works Progress Administration project to bolster the economy after the Great Depression, a cypress-tupelo swamp in the Bayou Duplantier in Baton Rouge was dammed and timbered, leading to its transformation into a series of lakes. The lakes, which span 275 acres and connect Louisiana State University with the surrounding neighborhoods, have become a key feature of the LSU campus and a valued recreational asset. They also provide important remnant habitat for such birds as cormorants (Phalacrocorax sp.), herons and egrets (Ardea sp. and Egretta sp.), ibis species (Eudocimus sp.), wood ducks (Aix sponsa), and American white pelicans (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos). Due to issues of eutrophycation after years of sedimentation and nutrient accumulation from urban stormwater runoff and natural accumulation, the lakes were in need of restoration and a master plan to guide ecological enhancements and improvements. As part of a master planning team led by SWA, Biohabitats helped ensure that the lakes’ ecology was seamlessly woven into design concepts aimed at creating a sustainable and resilient open space destination. Biohabitats examined the ecological conditions on site, as well as data from prior planning and assessment work. After presenting a summary of the ecological conditions to the Master Plan Advisory Committee, Biohabitats participated in a public design charrette. The “Build Your Own Park” charrette provided community members the opportunity to learn about the ecological context and challenges of the lakes and to contribute to the planning process. The final master plan includes strategies for habitat enhancement and ecological restoration, which will improve the lakes as an open space asset. The American Society of Landscape Architects awarded this master plan a 2016 Honor Award for Analysis & Planning.
|Baton Rouge Lakes Master Plan||Conservation Planning,||Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Beach Nourishment Monitoring|| |
Beaches along the Atlantic Ocean and Raritan Bay, New Jersey , United States Large volumes of sand were swept off of New Jersey beaches when Hurricane Sandy made landfall in 2012. As a result, the ecological and recreational value of these sand-starved beaches was compromised. Without the addition of more sand, the beaches would remain unable to guard against future storm surges and be unsuitable for recreation. No exception, the stretch of beaches along the Raritan Bay and Atlantic Ocean, from Keansburg to Asbury Park, suffered significant losses of sand, and a series of beach nourishment projects were undertaken during the summer of 2013. However, this area is also a known nesting habitat for a number of threatened bird species, including the black skimmer (Rynchops niger), least tern (Sternula antillarum), roseate tern (Sterna dougallii), and the Federally endangered piping plover (Charadrius melodus). The Federally endangered plant, seabeach amaranth (Amaranthus pumilus), has also been found in the area. For these reasons, Biohabitats was called on to monitor bird and plant species of concern for the duration of beach renourishment activities. Before dredging began, Biohabitats conducted a baseline bird and plant survey in order to note the species and populations present and suggest minimally-invasive locations for the dredging pipe and equipment. Even though no seabeach amaranth was found within the project area prior to the start of dredging activity, Biohabitats continued to scrupulously monitor the beach for new growth throughout the duration of the project, providing a weekly presence or absence assessment to the client. Throughout the piping plover and least tern nesting periods, Biohabitats closely monitored bird presence and behavior to ensure that the dredging project did not interfere with the birds in any way, especially with regard to the chicks’ ability to fledge. In Monmouth Beach, approximately 40 least tern chicks successfully fledged in 2013. Notably, the only two piping
|Beach Nourishment Monitoring||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Beaches along the Atlantic Ocean and Raritan Bay, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bear Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
Warrensville Heights, Ohio , United States The Cuyahoga County District Board of Health called upon Biohabitats to help restore approximately 2,000 linear feet of Bear Creek. The stream had been channelized, incised and disconnected from its floodplain. Severe bank erosion was occurring along several areas of the stream. The goals of this design-build project were to: improve water quality and aquatic and riparian habitat; dissipate stream energy; minimize erosion and sedimentation; protect existing infrastructure; provide stormwater management with vegetative filtering; increase the capacity of the channel; and create a living, educational feature for a nearby high school. Biohabitats’ design met these goals in a way that maximized ecological benefits, minimized disturbance, inspired and facilitated ongoing stewardship and education, and not only met the objectives of the project, but also the needs and desires of the community. The site was divided into two reaches: the Upper Reach and the Wetland Complex Reach. The approach for the Upper Reach was to protect infrastructure, dissipate stream energy, increase channel capacity, stabilize eroding banks, improve aquatic habitat, and increase the quality of the riparian buffer. In the Wetland Complex Reach, the design created a new floodplain and wetlands, realigned the channel planform with meanders, and provided a unique educational opportunity by creating a diverse, natural, and fluvial system.
|Bear Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Warrensville Heights, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bear Creek–Phase II|| |
Warrensville Heights, Ohio , United States After successfully completing the first phase of restoration of Bear Creek in 2012, the Tinker’s Creek Watershed Partners (TCWP) saw additional opportunities. TCWP contracted Biohabitats to help develop a conceptual design to address the entrenched channel and associated problems along an additional 1,000 feet of Bear Creek downstream of the first restoration. Bear Creek drains a watershed of about 450 acres, comprised of developments that are residential and light commercial alongside woodlands and open spaces. Altered hydrology and damaged stormwater outfalls have changed the character of the creek, deepening the stream bed and leaving steep streambanks instead of broad floodplain. Once such entrenchment has begun, it tends to worsen with time, as storms continue to blast away the walls and bottom of the channel, sending large volumes of fast-moving water downstream. Streams in this condition cannot store water and allow it to infiltrate into the soil, and they cannot support the rich diversity of invertebrates and animals that inhabit healthy streams. To address the existing issues, the second phase of the project would first repair a damaged stormwater outfall. The conceptual design also redirects Bear Creek away from the existing overhead utilities, creates floodplain wetlands in the old channel, and creates a shallow “floodplain bench” to provide structural diversity, shallow habitat, and a place to slow and store water during storm events. In addition, the design re-establishes native riparian woody vegetation to create a natural vegetated buffer and protect the stream.
|Bear Creek–Phase II||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Warrensville Heights, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Beargrass Creek Streambank Stabilization|| |
Louisville, Kentucky , United States Biohabitats was a key member of a team hired by the Louisville/Jefferson County Metropolitan Sewer District to analyze and restore a 500-foot section of Beargrass Creek near the Lakeview Condominiums. After performing an assessment of the Creek, Biohabitats developed a design concept, prepared final design documents and provided construction oversight. The project involved stormrain channel restoration, soil bioengineering stabilization, and restoration of two acres of riparian habitat.
|Beargrass Creek Streambank Stabilization||Ohio River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Louisville, Kentucky, United States||featured-project featured|
|Beaver Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
LaPlata County, Colorado , United States As part of their water quality and stream restoration efforts, the Southern Ute Indian Tribe selected Biohabitats to design and build stability and ecological habitat improvements for approximately 3,000 linear feet of Beaver Creek near Bayfield, Colorado. Biohabitats put together a design approach that not only dealt with the high, eroding banks but also created vital wetland habitat and increased the vegetated riparian buffer. The project included site assessment, final construction design of stream grading and planting, permitting and coordination with tribal regulations, management of workers from the tribe, construction, oversight of our grading contractor, and plant installation. Biohabitats worked closely with the Tribe to ensure timely permit review and to track stream water levels so they could take full advantage of the limited low-flow construction window between snowmelt and irrigation return runoff events. As a result, Biohabitats successfully completed construction on schedule. Biohabitats’ design approach involved building low veg-etated benches to stabilize the toes of severely eroding banks, provide high-flow energy dissipation and increased riparian buffer. It also included cutting off a series of highly eroded and overly-tight bends and creating an oxbow wetland in the existing channel. As part of the construction, Biohabitats hosted an ecology lab class from Fort Lewis College for one day and managed their volunteer planting efforts. Beaver Creek was Biohabitats’ fifth design-build project for the Southern Ute Indian Tribe.
|Beaver Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||LaPlata County, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bee Tree Preserve Master Plan Visioning|| |
Parkton, Maryland , United States Named after Bee Tree Run, a trout stream that meanders through 250 acres of woodland, meadows, and wetlands, Bee Tree Preserve has provided an inspiring and enriching retreat and passive recreation area since its donation to Towson Presbyterian Church in 1965. More recently, the Preserve was put into an environmental easement to ensure its long-term conservation, stewardship, and care. As part of the easement agreement, the Preserve was to have a plan for public access and natural resource management. After conducting a field assessment of the Preserve lands, Biohabitats organized and led a visioning charrette for stakeholders (church members, neighbors, and other frequent users). The goal of the charrette was two-fold: to reintroduce the site to the community through the lenses of history, landscape ecology, culture and recreation; and to elicit feedback regarding stakeholders’ desires, perceptions and goals for the Preserve. This resulted in a list of priorities and next steps that lay the foundation for an ecological master plan for Bee Tree Preserve: a place that can be experienced for it natural beauty and bounty, as a spiritual retreat, as well as for its natural resources and broader ecological function.
|Bee Tree Preserve Master Plan Visioning||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Parkton, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Belair Edison Neighborhoods Green Streets Planning and Design|| |
Baltimore City, Maryland , United States Biohabitats worked with community leaders in the northeast Baltimore neighborhood of Belair-Edison to develop a green infrastructure framework for the community. This project focused on opportunities for stormwater retrofits and ecological enhancements in the right-of-way and on private lots. Biohabitats helped to identify 14 candidate project sites for designs that included bioretention, impervious cover removal, permeable pavement, and tree plantings. Biohabitats participated in site visits, design charrettes, and public meetings with commu-nity stakeholders and residents to discuss neighborhood priorities for green infrastructure improvements and their relationship to other concerns such as traffic and safety. As a key part of the project, Biohabitats staff developed hand renderings and photo simulations for the four highest-ranked sites, resulting in a powerful visualization tool that can be used by neighborhood leaders in future community engagement efforts as well as funding requests.
|Belair Edison Neighborhoods Green Streets Planning and Design||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore City, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Belt Parkway Water Quality Best Management Facilities|| |
New York City, New York , United States Working with NYCDEP, Biohabitats developed final construction drawings and planting plans for stormwater quality best management practices (BMPs) to be incorporated into planned roadway improvement projects associated with three bridge crossings on the Belt Parkway, located in Jamaica Bay. The BMPs emphasize vegetative filtering and uptake followed by infiltration through the sandy soils. Bio-infiltration swales and bioretention features have been shown to be effective at removing pollutants by creating conditions suitable for sedimentation, biodegradation, and nutrient uptake. Moreover, bio-infiltration swales and bioretention features support native vegetation and wildlife. Because of their proximity to Jamaica Bay, another important aspect of the BMP designs was creating desirable habitat and shelter for birds, small mammals, butterflies, and other species as a transition area to the Bay. Biohabitats achieved this goal by selecting strategic native plant species for each site. For each BMP design, Biohabitats navigated several site constraints including avoiding a force main, high ground-water table, tree avoidance, and adapting to the roadway conveyance system without compromising safety considerations. As of September 2013, two of the BMP areas had been constructed and planted, and construction of the third BMP area is planned.
|Belt Parkway Water Quality Best Management Facilities||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Big Creek Watershed Stormwater Management Improvement|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States The Big Creek Watershed is one of the most highly urbanized watersheds within Cuyahoga County and the entire Lake Erie Basin. Big Creek serves as a major tributary to the Cuyahoga River. Non-point and point source pollution, stormwater volume, infrastructure impacts, land use developments and practices, and daily activities have all impacted the Big Creek stream system. A 1999-2000 stormwater management study analyzed the stormwater drainage capacity of the Chevrolet Branch subwatershed of Big Creek. As a result of this study, a multi-community, multi-agency project was developed that focused on three main watershed management components: road culvert/stream channel restoration, a diversion pipe, and a storage basin. As part of a multidisciplinary team, Biohabitats prepared stream channel restoration designs for 4,500 lineal feet along Chevrolet Branch. The primary goals of the restoration were to stabilize channel banks, develop a riparian zone with native vegetation, and restore both the flow and sediment carrying capacity of the stream. The channel improvements were based on the application of natural channel design techniques within an urban context.
|Big Creek Watershed Stormwater Management Improvement||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Big Cypress National Preserve–Restoration of 50 Mile Bend|| |
Collier County, Florida , United States At over 700,000 acres, the Big Cypress Preserve is home to a mixture of both tropical and temperate plant communities. As such, the Preserve contains important habitat for a number of unique species, including the endangered Florida Panther. In order to protect and enhance this valuable ecosystem, the National Park Service (NPS) is actively restoring sites within the Preserve that bear the scars of previous land use and wetland filling. In support of this effort, Biohabitats Inc. was selected by the NPS to undertake the hydrologic restoration of a 13.5 acre former campground. Responsible for all permitting, earthmoving, stone crushing, and final grading, Biohabitats excavated and processed approximately 23,000 cubic yards of fill material at the project location. Strong attention was paid to obtaining final site elevations that would provide a hydrologic connection with the adjoining marsh while also supporting the establishment of native flora. Operating with tight time constraints and within a challenging environment, Biohabitats was able to bring creative solutions to the table that enabled this wetland restoration to be completed ahead of schedule. Of particular gratification to project participants was the use of this site for bald eagle feeding shortly after completion.
|Big Cypress National Preserve–Restoration of 50 Mile Bend||Ecological Restoration,||Collier County, Florida, United States||featured-project featured|
|Big Thompson River Restoration|| |
Larimer County, Colorado , United States In 2013, the Big Thompson River and its North Fork experienced extreme flooding that devastated the community and caused two deaths along with extensive property and infrastructure damage. The flooding also severely degraded the river corridor’s ecological, scenic, and recreational values. To help develop resilient river restoration solutions, Biohabitats provided ecological restoration planning services for the Big Thompson Watershed Coalition’s Priority Reach Restoration Planning project. As a subconsultant to Stantec, Biohabitats assisted with data review and field assessments, stakeholder and public engagement, design coordination and technical guidance, and 30% design development for three reaches. Biohabitats also helped conduct ecological surveys to determine potential natural vegetation types and identify geomorphically appropriate vegetation types. Biohabitats reviewed baseline ecological mapping collected during field surveys to collaborate on restoration targets and trajectories. After contributing to the development of preliminary conceptual design plans, Biohabitats provided input on proposed plan form alignment, representative cross sections, channel profile, and other design elements. Rooted in understanding the river and its formative progressions through natural stream evolutionary processes and anthropogenic activities within the watershed, the restoration design was crafted to work with natural processes of the stream and incorporate local, native materials wherever possible.
|Big Thompson River Restoration||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Larimer County, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Birmingham Botanical Gardens Master Plan|| |
Birmingham, Alabama , United States Birmingham Botanical Gardens is Alabama’s largest living museum, with more than 10,000 different plants in its living collections and over 25 unique gardens. As a key member of the Gardens’ master planning team, working collaboratively with Oasis Design Group whom served as the project’s master planner, Biohabitats helped craft a plan to ensure that the 68-acre site would demonstrate sustainability principles long into the future. The Gardens draws more than 350,000 visitors annually and public education is integral to its mission. Biohabitats focused primarily on establishing a more regenerative approach to stormwater management that makes use of natural ecological processes emphasizing native vegetation. As part of this effort, Biohabitats engineers, landscape architects and ecologists helped conceptualize restoration of a prominent creek and conversion of a concrete-lined pond into a wetland and riparian ecological community. Biohabitats led a seminar on sustainability and participated in meetings and presentations to staff, board members, and donors.
|Birmingham Botanical Gardens Master Plan||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Birmingham, Alabama, United States||featured-project featured|
|Blackbird Creek Reserve Ecological Restoration Master Plan|| |
New Castle County, Delaware , United States Recognizing the need to conserve and manage over 350 acres of newly acquired land for the Blackbird Creek Reserve, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control turned to Biohabitats to develop an Ecological Restoration Master Plan. The Blackbird Creek Reserve is part of the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve, one of 27 protected areas comprising the National Estuarine Research Reserve System. This site presents an opportunity to further the System’s mission to practice coastal and estuarine research and education. The Reserve gets its name from Blackbird Creek, an area of natural habitats for many fish, wildlife and plant species. With its rich history as working land for farming, fishing, hunting and trapping, the area serves as a cornerstone for the local community and its economy. School children, researchers and people of all ages and backgrounds come to the Reserve for an unforgettable experience of natural beauty and a glimpse into the way Delaware’s wild lands once were and can be in the future. Working with Reserve staff and local stakeholders, Biohabitats conducted an existing conditions assessment, developed a restoration and research framework, and made ecological restoration recommendations. The effort involved an assessment of native plant communities, streams, wetlands, wildlife habitat and critical habitat for rare, threatened & endangered species. Biohabitats recommended restoration strategies and projects, and identified potential restoration areas to be phased in over 25 years. The master plan also included recommendations for stewardship and sustainability measures for proposed reserve features, including a canoe/kayak launch, parking areas, agricultural lands stormwater best management practices, environmental education, research and interpretive trail opportunities.
|Blackbird Creek Reserve Ecological Restoration Master Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||New Castle County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Blue Neighborhoods and Alleys: Stormwater Management|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States In an effort to reduce and treat stormwater runoff in highly urbanized areas of Baltimore City, a public/private partnership that included two municipal departments, two community associations, and the well-respected Blue Water Baltimore Watershed Association launched an initiative to intensively retrofit several streets and alleys through the use of street bumpouts (bioretention), permeable pavement alleyways, rain barrels, downspout disconnection, and other green infrastructure techniques. Biohabitats, collaborating with the Center for Watershed Protection, designed and supervised the construction of four bumpouts and three alley ways in two Baltimore neighborhoods. Performance of the retrofits was monitored to gauge success in meeting city National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) and Municipal Separate Storm Sewer (MS4) program requirements and goals. Monitoring also helped to determine which type of retrofit was most effective in terms of cost and performance in an ultra-urban environment. The monitoring scheme focused on runoff reduction and testing of BMP performance with respect to routine maintenance. This holistic approach allowed for optimal transferability within the City, throughout the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, and beyond. The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation provided a generous $600,000 Chesapeake Bay Innovative Nutrient and Sediment Reduction grant to fund management, design, and construction for the project, while the City Departments of Transportation and Public Works agreed to provide an additional $300,000 toward construction.
|Blue Neighborhoods and Alleys: Stormwater Management||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Boeye Reservoir Master Plan|| |
McAllen, Texas , United States Loosely modeled on San Antonio’s River Walk, Boeye Reservoir was envisioned as a mix of high-end boutiques, restaurants, nightclubs, stores and condominiums that would surround a 10-acre central park in which residents could relax, listen to street music, and enjoy a theater production in a planned amphitheater. The Boeye Reservoir, one of McAllen’s two reservoirs, occupied most of the 67-acre site. Too small for McAllen’s needs and occupying valuable real estate, the reservoir had been targeted for closure. The city planned to build a new reservoir in South McAllen, and construct the park, amphitheater and canals, which would lay the infrastructure for the retail and residential development. A key member of the integrated master planning team, Biohabitats addressed design issues concerning water, wastewater and stormwater. Working with the team’s energy consultant, Biohabitats developed methods to use stormwater, wastewater and irrigation water as heat sinks. This greatly improved the project’s overall energy efficiency. One of the major features of the project is a canal, which serves as a recreational resource, stormwater management, and heat sink for building cooling systems.
|Boeye Reservoir Master Plan||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||McAllen, Texas, United States||featured-project featured|
|BoRit Restoration Consulting|| |
Ambler, Pennsylvania , United States From the 1930s to the 1970s the BoRit property was used as a disposal site for asbestos-containing material from a nearby asbestos manufacturing plant. In 2008, the EPA began asbestos removal efforts, which have included work along the banks of the Wissahickon, Rose Valley and Tannery Run Creeks. To ensure a single community voice in the restoration process, a community action group (CAG) representing a diverse cross section of key stakeholders was formed. The CAG included property owners, residents, planners, community groups, environmentalists, health experts, local businesses, affected municipalities and others. Under the EPA’s Technical Assistance Services for Communities (TASC) program, Biohabitats was brought into the CAG to provide independent technical assistance on proposed streambank stabilization techniques. Biohabitats reviewed and commented on streambank stabilization aspects of EPA’s Removal Action plan, participated in CAG meetings, and performed site visits during construction.
|BoRit Restoration Consulting||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Ambler, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Boulder County Riparian Inventory and Assessments|| |
Boulder County, Colorado , United States In order to protect riparian ecosystems, one must first understand how they function and how landscape dynamics impact stream stability, habitat quality, and vegetation communities. With that in mind, Boulder County Parks and Open Space selected Biohabitats to perform an inventory and assessment of over 20 miles of riparian corridors and develop a strategic, priority-based approach to guide their protection and enhancement. Biohabitats compiled existing information, including GIS mapping, and developed an assessment methodology based on the Bureau of Land Management Proper Functioning Condition Standard. After dividing the 20 miles of streams into 50 reaches, Biohabitats visited and assessed each reach over a two-week period. At each reach, Biohabitats gathered data to complete a customized assessment form designed specifically for the project. Biohabitats also took photographs and recorded GPS coordinates at each reach. Based on the results of the assessment, Biohabitats prioritized reaches and produced a report. Armed with this information, Boulder County Parks and Open Space is now able to make informed decisions about near-term management actions and future planning opportunities.
|Boulder County Riparian Inventory and Assessments||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Boulder County, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Boulder Reservoir Biological Assessment|| |
Boulder, Colorado , United States Boulder Reservoir is a rarity in semi-arid Colorado, a freshwater lake on a 234-acre site with diverse surrounding habitat. The City of Boulder contracted Biohabitats to conduct a biological assessment that will serve as a basis for the plan and develop an approach to specifically link the monitoring information to management alternatives. Boulder Reservoir offers habitat to four distinct native plant communities, including native herbaceous wetlands that are ecologically significant and an unusual system of salt flats. Black-tailed prairie dogs and the burrowing owls that depend on them are included in the area’s wildlife community. The reservoir is managed for domestic water supply and irrigation, but it has also become an increasingly important recreational resource. As the recreational pressures increase, there is a critical need to balance the protection of natural resources and management of recreation. Biohabitats took an ecosystem approach to this project, addressing the soils, hydrology, vegetation and animal communities, as well as the critical component of human use. Biohabitats conducted baseline inventories of vegetation and wildlife resources; established ecological management zones and priority conservation targets; analyzed the recreational activities and potential impacts to resources; developed protection strategies and recommendations, and created a framework for adaptive management.
|Boulder Reservoir Biological Assessment||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Boulder, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Breewood Stream Restoration and LID Retrofit|| |
Wheaton, Maryland , United States Montgomery County, Maryland is the state’s most populous county. Located just northwest of Washington, DC, in the larger Chesapeake Bay watershed, it also has some of the most stringent MS4 permit requirements in the nation. In 2009, as part of their efforts to meet those requirements, the County selected the Breewood Tributary for restoration. A tributary to Sligo Creek, and ultimately the Anacostia River, the stream had been severely impacted by stormwater from its densely populated, urban surroundings, where development predated stormwater management regulations. Much of the runoff entering the tributary through four outfalls had no stormwater management. Because of this, the stream had eroding banks, exposed sewer lines, and fish blockages. The Breewood watershed is an NPDES monitoring watershed, where the effectiveness of the watershed management plan and various stormwater practices is being examined on their effectiveness to improve stormwater quality. Biohabitats, in a joint venture with Century Engineering, developed a design to restore 1000 linear feet of highly unstable, eroding stream channel of the Breewood tributary and retrofit a portion of the contributing drainage area using Low Impact Design (LID) practices to slow down, capture, and treat stormwater runoff. The stream restoration design included performing a geomorphic and historic setting analysis, alternatives analysis, hydrologic and hydraulic analysis, final design, Federal, state and local permitting, bid support, and construction oversight and management. The selected design approach on two ephemeral channels and one perennial reach utilized a regenerative stream conveyance design to reconnect the channel to the adjacent floodplain and create a variety of in-stream habitat conditions and riparian wetlands. Imported sand and mulch was used to fill the gullies at the ephemeral headwaters of the project to promote conversion of runoff to groundwater. Below a stabilized sewer line crossing at the confluence, on-site material was used
|Breewood Stream Restoration and LID Retrofit||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Wheaton, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Brewer Pond Shoreline Protection|| |
Sherwood Forest, Anne Arundel County, Maryland , United States Brewer Pond is a 22-acre tidal pond along the Severn River that is surrounded by 50 acres of riparian forest called Brewer Pond Natural Area. An important spawning site for fish, amphibians, and reptiles, the pond is also a breeding area for bald eagles, colonial waders and reclusive forest interior dweller birds. Over the years, natural wave action, boat wakes, and tidal inundation had caused the tidal marsh to erode, even after the construction of the stone revetment. In addition, the sediment source for the very existence of the tidal marsh feature extending into Brewer Pond may have been cut off or redirected after the 1995 construction of stone breakwaters immediately north of the project site. In a joint venture with Century Engineering, Biohabitats helped the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works (DPW) evaluate the potential breaching of a section of stone revetment constructed in 1995 and the cause of erosion of a section of a previous tidal marsh restoration. The project also included the design of a stable and resilient condition at the Brewer Pond County Park. Directly adjacent to the project site is an extensive bed of submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV), an important component of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem for water quality and habitat. It was important to limit disturbance to this important natural resource. The team’s design applied a hybrid living shoreline approach to provide shoreline protection through a combination of tidal marsh restoration, a marsh sill, and adjacent formed oyster reef structures to prevent further erosion and loss of tidal marsh habitat. The hybrid living shoreline will be constructed in a manner that avoids/minnimizes impact to the existing SAV to the maximum extent possible. For example, construction access will be from the water using a shallow water barge or similar vessel
|Brewer Pond Shoreline Protection||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Sherwood Forest, Anne Arundel County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bridle Path Stream Restoration|| |
McLean, Virginia , United States The thriving, urban community of Fairfax County is the most populous jurisdiction in both Virginia and the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. Under an on-call contract with the Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services Stormwater Planning Division, Biohabitats teamed with Baker Engineering to restore 1,700 feet of Bradley Branch near Bridle Path Lane. The Bridle Path Stream Restoration Project was initiated by the County to address numerous concerns—both local and watershed-based. The main channel had become incised and severely downcut, resulting in falling trees, eroding banks, poor habitat, and loss of property for nearby homeowners. This project is part of a larger effort to meet Clean Water Act permit requirements, restore many of the County’s degraded stream systems, and support regional initiatives to improve the condition of the Chesapeake Bay. Biohabitats developed design alternatives and presented them at to the community to solicit input and identify a preferred alternative. Specific design tasks include detailed fluvial geomorphic field analyses; sediment transport analysis; ecological and vegetative assessments; development of concept design drawings and a design justification report; and preparation of design and construction drawings, specifications, and cost estimate. Biohabitats also helped prepare regulatory permits and provided technical oversight during the construction phase. The design protected private properties at risk because of stream erosion, stabilized the stream within the designated project reach using natural channel design practices, and enhanced aquatic and terrestrial habitat along the stream and its drainage outfall channels. The selected approach raised the bed of the channel to alleviate bank shear stresses and reconnect the floodplain. A low bench was designed to accommodate more frequent floodflows. In-stream structures made of stone boulders were installed to maintain grades, dissipate energy and reduce erosion, and create habitat diversity. Special care was taken in developing the proposed alignment
|Bridle Path Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||McLean, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Broadmead Invasives Control|| |
Northern Baltimore County, Maryland , United States When unattractive, non-native plant species began to dominate the vegetation surrounding a pond on the picturesque grounds of the Broadmead retirement community, the facility turned to Biohabitats for help. Originally designed to manage stormwater and add to landscape aesthetics, the pond, with its overgrown invasive plants, had become an eyesore. Previous attempts to treat the invasive species with chemical herbicides proved costly and ineffective. Biohabitats began by assessing the site and holistically evaluating the causes of the invasive species problem. This included an evaluation of nutrient loads to the pond. The pond drains to the Loch Raven Reservoir, a primary drinking water source for the City of Baltimore and much of Baltimore County. Biohabitats’ invasive species specialists then developed a multi-year, phased plan that integrated physical control and remove key invasive species (i.e., cattail, purple loosestrife, corkscrew willow, and Canadian thistle), supplemental planting with native wetland species, a small amount of herbicide application, and management recommendations including a reduction in mowing and fertilizer use. Biohabitats also supervised implementation of the plan by the landscape contractor. After Biohabitats’ treatment, the invasive plants are under control, and attractive native wetland plants are well established. By implementing the recommended management changes, the facility will continue to reduce its landscape maintenance costs. Biohabitats’ ongoing work at Broadmead includes the exploration of opportunities to implement stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) to further improve the quality of water draining to the pond. To add even more value to the client, Biohabitats delivered a presentation for community residents to inform them about the project and the environmental benefits of native wetland plants beyond enhanced aesthetics.
|Broadmead Invasives Control||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Northern Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Brock Environmental Center–Rainwater Harvesting & Reuse|| |
Virginia Beach, Virginia , United States The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is an independent conservation organization dedicated to the protection and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay. CBF operates out of offices in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania and DC as well as 15 field centers. One of its newest facilities is the Brock Environmental Center, located in Virginia Beach, VA. Intended as a regional home for its environmental education programs, the Center itself is an innovative example of environmentally sensitive and smart building. It is among the first in the nation to embrace energy and water independence. Designed by SmithGroup JJR, the Center is set to be certified as one of the first structures in the mainland U.S. to achieve the most advanced measure of sustainability in the built environment: a “Living Building.” Biohabitats provided peer review for the design of the building’s rain-to-potable-water infrastructure. The system consists of rain cistern, filtration, and disinfection components. Biohabitats also helped the design team attain permitting for the project. As a site that has achieved Living Building certification, the industry’s most rigorous sustainability standards, the Center is permitted to supply all of the water and energy it needs while composting all of its building and human waste.
|Brock Environmental Center–Rainwater Harvesting & Reuse||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Virginia Beach, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bronson Creek Floodplain Habitat Enhancement|| |
Beaverton, Oregon , United States Bronson Creek is an urban stream in Washington County, Oregon. Its water ultimately flows to the Tualatin River, which supports salmonids and other species protected under the Endangered Species Act. Though Bronson Creek may have supported steelhead or other salmonid species historically, it has more recently exceeded standards for pollutants such as bacteria and high temperatures. In a unique partnership to enhance Bronson Creek, Clean Water Services (CWS), a public utility, and the Tualatin Hills Parks and Recreation District (THPRD), a municipal agency, launched a floodplain revegetation project. To begin the revegetation process, Biohabitats installed large woody debris (LWD) structures which not only add habitat complexity and improved water quality, but also help reconnect the creek with its floodplain and distribute flood flows over the floodplain. Challenges presented by the 10-acre, sensitive riparian corridor included its proximity to private homes and its heavily saturated soils. Biohabitats used low ground pressure (LGP) equipment in conjunction with steel plates to gain access to each LWD complex area. The innovative construction access into saturated wetland soils also included seeding, mulching, and erosion control. Biohabitats provided log jam installation, log placement, and vertical pile log installation in sensitive areas. More than 150 rootwads and 250 vertical pin pile logs were installed among existing beaver dams within the floodplain. Once fully revegetated by CWS, the project will not only improve water quality, habitat, and floodplain connectivity, but it will help THPRD gain additional shade credits toward an NPDES permit.
|Bronson Creek Floodplain Habitat Enhancement||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Beaverton, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bronx River Fluvial Geomorphic Assessment|| |
Westchester County, New York , United States The Bronx River watershed measures 48.3 square miles and includes portions of 13 municipalities in Westchester County, NY. In an effort to improve the quality of Long Island Sound, including the Bronx River, and help local municipalities comply with new stormwater regulations, the County turned to Biohabitats and the Center for Watershed Protection. The team joined forces to help this intermunicipal effort by identifying stream restoration, pollution prevention, and stormwater retrofit opportunities and crafting a watershed management plan for the Upper Bronx River Watershed. Biohabitats’ tasks included a fluvial geomorphic assessment of over 20 miles of stream within the watershed using the Unified Stream Assessment protocol and a riparian corridor restoration assessment to identify existing problems and possible opportunities for improvement. Using data collected from these assessments and from the Center for Watershed Protection, a watershed assessment and management report was developed. The report helped prepare Westchester County to meet its goal for better water quality in Long Island Sound and the Bronx River Watershed by setting priorities for restoration efforts and providing a framework to develop management plans.
|Bronx River Fluvial Geomorphic Assessment||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Westchester County, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bronx Zoo Master Plan|| |
Bronx, New York , United States The largest metropolitan zoo in the nation, the Bronx Zoo is a world renowned center for science and education. It is also the headquarters for wildlife and wildlands conservation projects around the world. In 2002 the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) engaged the team of Ayers/Saint/Gross Architect and Planners, Michael Vergason Landscape Architects, and Biohabitats to prepare a master plan for the campus that reflects and facilitates the Zoo’s mission and institutional values. “We spend a lot of money overseas working toward wildlife conservation, and if we’re going to do that, we had better be living our mission at home,” said Sue Chin, Director of Planning and Design for WCS. Biohabitats’ responsibilities focused on assessing the natural systems of the site including hydrology, soils, vegetation, landscape ecology, invasive plant threats and overall environmental sustainability. Concept development included preparing diagrams that explored and tested the spatial implications of the site’s natural systems and their relationships with built systems, operations, and cultural features. The final master plan evolved from the concept diagrams through a series of two-day workshops with WCS staff and various stakeholders. A unique aspect of the final master plan was its recognition that the landscape fabric that weaves around and throughout the Zoo’s exhibits is, in itself, an exhibit of the local ecology of the Bronx River Watershed that has been displaced by urban development. Inherent throughout the master plan is the recognition that this ecology should be protected, restored and celebrated.
|Bronx Zoo Master Plan||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Bronx, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bronx Zoo Woodland and Stormwater Management Plans|| |
Bronx, New York , United States After assessing the ecological conditions of the Bronx Zoo and contributing recommendations for the Zoo’s Master Plan, Biohabitats was called upon by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WSC) to prepare a Woodland Management and Stormwater Management Plan for the Bronxdale Upland Riparian Restoration Project. These two management plans are a significant step in WCS’s efforts to employ environmentally sustainable design initiatives throughout the Zoo’s ongoing development and operations. For the Woodland Management Plan, Biohabitats developed a woodland restoration action plan based on an adaptive management framework. The plan addressed issues such as invasive plant species management, aged tree replacement, native woodland planting, and soil regeneration strategies. It also included a framework for directing the allocation of funds, materials and labor to implement recommended actions. Finally, the plan provided a detailed schedule (including timing and frequency) for implementing specific woodland restoration action items. The Stormwater Management Plan focused on the integration of water quality best management practices to treat stormwater from impervious surfaces. Biohabitats identified many opportunities and a wide variety of BMP treatment methods for the site. Based on a prioritization schedule, Biohabitats will develop detailed design and construction drawings for a bioretention facility to treat stormwater.
|Bronx Zoo Woodland and Stormwater Management Plans||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Bronx, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Brown Branch Stream Restoration|| |
Caldwell County, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats worked with the North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program to restore approximately 6,000 linear feet of Brown Branch, a tributary to Mulberry Creek. Brown Branch was historically ditched and relocated to one side of a grazed alluvial valley. Entrenched into its former stream deposits, the stream had lost connectivity with its floodplain and proceeded to widen via chronic bank erosion. Biohabitats’ restoration design involved re-meandering the channel through the open valley fields, establishing a low floodplain surface, and revegetating the riparian area with native species. The design also sought to preserve existing recreational opportunities at a 4-H camp on site. Restoration strategies incorporated natural channel design, fluvial geomorphologic principles and soil bioengineering techniques. Biohabitats’ plan included in-stream design techniques such as log vanes, J-hooks, root wads, rock cross vanes, log bank protection, and log J-hooks. To create a mosaic of wetland and forested communities, complex floodplain grading included depressions left where the existing channel was abandoned. Standing snags, brush piles and downed logs were also left along the floodplain to increase habitat diversity and wetlands. Permanent fencing and watering facilities were installed to restrict livestock access to the restored channel.
|Brown Branch Stream Restoration||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Caldwell County, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Buchanan Green Street|| |
Mount Rainier, Maryland , United States The city of Mount Rainier, Maryland, located only four miles from downtown Washington, DC, is known as a vibrant, pedestrian friendly community with a longstanding history of environmental stewardship. Stormwater flowing through Mount Rainier drains to the Anacostia River and ultimately, the Chesapeake Bay. Working towards a vision of citywide green infrastructure, the city initiated an effort to transform an overly wide street in need of traffic calming into a “green street.” The street is also home to a community swimming pool and the future site of a public park. Funded by a grant from the Chesapeake Bay Trust, the Buchanan Green Street project aims to reduce flows into the Anacostia, promote groundwater infiltration, expand the tree canopy and native vegetation, improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety, and educate the community about its connection to the local ecology. To advance the project beyond the conceptual phase, Biohabitats provided design and feasibility assessment services. The Biohabitats team began by conducting a site assessment and quantifying the target stormwater treatment volume. Biohabitats then crafted engineering design drawings for a bioretention cell retrofit to capture and treat runoff along Buchanan Street and from a nearby swimming pool parking lot. Tailored for ease of maintenance by the City’s Department of Public Works, the design also improves street infrastructure, traffic calming, street trees and native plantings, educational opportunities, and flood control. Biohabitats mapped additional green infrastructure opportunities along Buchanan Street and within the adjacent residential neighborhood. Once constructed, Mount Rainier’s new “green street” will serve as a key building block for the city’s future green street and green infrastructure efforts.
|Buchanan Green Street||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Mount Rainier, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Buffalo River Shoreline Restoration Design Phase I & Phase II|| |
Erie County, New York , United States Biohabitats recently helped the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s (USACE) Buffalo District in an effort to determine if a Federal Interest exists in pursuing six potential ecological restoration projects within the Lake Erie watershed and the USACE’s jurisdiction. The USACE’s primary goals for these projects are to enhance fish and wildlife resources and restore and protect aquatic ecosystems that improve the environmental quality and are in the public interest. Biohabitats developed Determination of Federal Interest (DFI) fact sheets for each site, performing data collection and review, field reconnaissance/plan formulation, and evaluation of alternatives including reconnaissance level cost estimates and ecosystem benefit scenarios for each alternative. The six project sites included Mentor Marsh (Lake County, Ohio), Dugway Creek (Cuyahoga County, Ohio), and Buffalo Outer Harbor, Cornelius Creek, LaSalle Park, and Scajaquada Creek (Erie Co., New York). The DFI fact sheets will help the USACE prioritize restoration options and guide the implementation of initiatives that will result in improved water quality and habitat conditions for the plant, animal and human communities in those watersheds.
|Buffalo River Shoreline Restoration Design Phase I & Phase II||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Erie County, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Bullitt Center ‘Living Building’ Water Infrastructure|| |
Seattle, Washington , United States The Bullitt Foundation is a nonprofit organization with a mission to “safeguard the natural environment by promoting responsible human activities and sustainable communities in the Pacific Northwest.” The Foundation’s new home, the Bullitt Center in Seattle, Washington, demonstrates that this organization truly lives its mission. The six-story, 52,000-square-foot building, an AIA COTE Top Ten, is the first office building to have achieved full certification under the most rigorous performance standards in sustainable construction: the Living Building Challenge. Beyond “green,” the Bullitt Center is a self-sustaining, “living building.” It is the tallest building ever to implement a foam flush composting system. In 2014, it produced 60% more energy than it uses. To achieve the minimum net zero energy required in the Living Building Challenge, the building design integrated solar panels on the rooftop, active design to encourage stair use, rainwater harvesting and filtration, and greywater treatment through constructed wetlands, and several other strategies. Biohabitats participated in the water infrastructure concept design for the Bullitt Center as part of an integrated design team led by The Miller Hull Partnership. Biohabitats also peer reviewed the final design with team members PAE and 2020 Engineering. Biohabitats continues to assist the Bullitt Foundation optimizing the water infrastructure systems including a planted greywater recirculating gravel filter that provides water for irrigation and groundwater recharge. In addition to housing the Foundation, as well as the International Living Future Institute and the University of Washington’s Integrated Design Lab, the building aims to drive change in the marketplace faster and further by demonstrating what is possible in sustainable design.
|Bullitt Center ‘Living Building’ Water Infrastructure||Cascadia Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Seattle, Washington, United States||featured-project featured|
|Burgundy Farm Country Day School Ecological Site Assessment|| |
Alexandria, Virginia , United States Founded in 1946 on the site of a former dairy farm, the Burgundy Farm Country Day School strives to foster “…responsibility for self, for others, and for the natural world.” Recognizing that the campus landscape is imbedded in its core identity, the school contracted Biohabitats to perform an ecological assessment of the campus and develop recommendations for its sustainable use and conservation. Biohabitats began by reviewing spatial data related to the landscape and characterizing field conditions. The landscape was broken down and mapped into nine separate ecological zones, with each eco-zone reflecting a variation in the dominant plant community, ecological processes, and relative ecological integrity. Biohabitats then developed a series of zone-specific strategies to address challenges and enhance the overall landscape sustainability. These strategies included: reducing impermeable surface area to less than 10% of the total acreage; implementing deer exclusion to foster forest regeneration; reducing sedimentation and nutrient loading in the campus pond; limiting new construction to areas of low ecological integrity; expanding of the campus tree canopy; and converting lawn areas to naturalized meadow. The school enthusiastically embraced these recommendations and has integrated the ecological assessment into its larger campus master plan.
|Burgundy Farm Country Day School Ecological Site Assessment||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Regenerative Design,||Alexandria, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Burke Park–Adaptive Lake Management Plan|| |
Boulder, Colorado , United States In 2002, low water levels caused a fish kill in Thunderbird Lake, and water levels have remained low since that time. Biohabitats was contracted in September 2007 to investigate long-term options for lake management. Public meetings were conducted to educate the community, discuss options, and solicit input. Because of the aesthetic desires of many residents in the community, the focus of the study was to investigate possible sources of water to refill the lake and maintain it at its former level. In addition to aesthetics, water quality, costs, water rights, and wildlife habitat were considered. The options included repairing the tile drain, redirecting stormwater, installing a groundwater well, and continuing adaptive management. Eight monitoring wells and a surface water station were installed to assist in evaluating the interrelationship between groundwater and surface water and selection of viable, sustainable options. An Adaptive Management Plan prepared by Biohabitats set a framework for monitoring and adjusting management practices based on a series of evaluation criteria and response actions. Annual monitoring reports were provided to the City to assist them in evaluating their progress and adjusting their management practices. After a 3-year monitoring and pilot period, the citizens and City Council were able to make an informed decision about the cost and long-term approaches for maintaining this neighborhood resource. In addition to the adaptive management project, Biohabitats worked with the City and a nearby school on an outreach and education effort that included the students in park planning.
|Burke Park–Adaptive Lake Management Plan||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Boulder, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Burke Park–Make a Difference Class|| |
Boulder, Colorado , United States Recognizing the need for children to have early, positive outdoor experiences right in their own neighborhoods, the City of Boulder Parks and Recreation Department initiated an effort to improve a public park that would inspire nature and adventure play and provide new gathering spaces for outdoor living and learning. For the site, they chose Admiral Arleigh Burke Park, a six-acre park featuring a popular lake and a location adjacent to Horizons Montessori K–8, a charter school founded on principles of environmental responsibility. Rather than simply design for children, the City chose to design with children. To help envision the new park, the City pulled together a unique partnership of Horizons students, the Keep it Clean Partnership (a community group focused on improving stormwater management), the City’s Watershed Outreach office, Biohabitats, and the University of Colorado’s Growing Up Boulder, an initiative which fosters youth involvement in planning and decision making. As part of Horizons’ four-week service learning program called Make-A-Difference, Biohabitats and other partnership members engaged 4th–8th graders in a series of activities to re-envision their park. During the first week, students explored the site, learned about its geology and hydrology, and created photo grids to document features and opportunities. The second week was a ‘bio-blitz,’ where students identified plants and wildlife and tested the lake’s water quality. During the final weeks, students learned about the design process, participated in charettes, built models of play and learning areas, and held a community workshop with more than 40 neighbors, including those from a nearby senior community. The students shared their findings and their suggestions for the park, and the workshop resulted in an exciting, multi-generational exchange of ideas. The result was a design that emphasized four key themes: a playground area dubbed “river of sand and rock” by the children,
|Burke Park–Make a Difference Class||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Boulder, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Burns Street & Texas Avenue, Southeast Sewer Repair Restoration|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States Biohabitats developed plans to restore an area of National Park Service land damaged during a sewer repair project. Contractors repairing the sewer went outside of the LOD, damaging additional trees, ‘pushing’ sediment down a streambank, and leaving mounds of rock and soil in the woods immediately outside of the LOD. After reviewing the plans with DC Water and National Park Service staff and receiving approval to proceed, Biohabitats worked with our design-build partners on this project to implement the plans. This involved installing erosion and sediment control to protect the adjacent stream from further sedimentation, removing rock and gravel material that did not originate on the site, grading the side (including excavation of material pushed down the streambank) to resemble the pre-sewer repair condition, build a log toe wall along a part of the stream where the streambank had been undermining the sewer manhole, add mulch to the exposed sub soils to initiate formation of new topsoil, and plant the site with a native mix of trees, shrubs, and forbs. After construction, the restoration site was inspected by DC Water and the National Park Service and approved.
|Burns Street & Texas Avenue, Southeast Sewer Repair Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Camphill Soltane Natural Wastewater Wetlands Treatment System|| |
Glenmoore, Pennsylvania , United States "Care for the planet” is a key principle of Camphill Soltane, a nonprofit organization that helps adults with special needs discover their talents and grow their capacities through educational and vocational programs. Located on 50-acre landscape that features rolling hills, forest, and an apple orchard, the organization’s main campus includes nine residential houses, an apartment building, and three multi-use buildings. On-site sewage disposal systems and domestic water supply wells had adequately served the campus in the past, but when its Facility Master Plan called for seven additional residences and nine additional supporting structures, Camphill Soltane needed a new, upgraded strategy for treating and managing wastewater—one that would demonstrate their commitment to the environment. Biohabitats designed a sustainable, low-energy, on-site wastewater treatment system to process up to 11,500 gallons of wastewater per day, treat it to tertiary standards using biological and mechanical processes, and return it to groundwater. The system includes primary treatment tanks and a network of pump tanks with effluent filters, a small diameter collection system, constructed wetlands planted with native vegetation, a recirculating sand filter, and a land application dosing tank. Some of the existing septic tanks were able to be repurposed as part of the new system. Once treated, effluent is dispersed via land application using a drip irrigation system to a 1.35-acre field, where it slowly infiltrates back into the land. Evans Mill Environmental, a local environmental engineering firm provided design of the land application system and collaborated on local permitting and construction administration.
|Camphill Soltane Natural Wastewater Wetlands Treatment System||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Glenmoore, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Campus Wastewater Treatment and Reuse|| |
Ukiah, California , United States The City of Ten Thousand Buddhas (CTTB) is the first large Buddhist monastic community in the United States. First established in 1974, the CTTB owns 700 acres of land with about 80 of those acres developed into a monastic complex. The other areas consist of fields, orchards, vineyards, and woods. CTTB is currently developing plans to expand their campus. The existing West Campus accommodates an average of 755 occupants. The proposed East Campus is estimated to double this size. As water resources in this agricultural region are scarce and valuable, CTTB intends to treat and reuse all of the wastewater generated on the site from the two campuses. Biohabitats helped CTTB complete a master plan, conceptual level design, and permitting approach for wastewater treatment and land application infrastructure for the East and West Campuses. This approach includes primary treatment tanks, recirculating sand filters, constructed wetlands, reuse storage ponds, and drain fields. The treated wastewater will be reused as irrigation for vineyard and orchard crops on the CTTB property. Biohabitats is continuing to work with CTTB to further develop the on-site wastewater treatment system, providing design, planning, and engineering services for all phases through construction.
|Campus Wastewater Treatment and Reuse||Cascadia Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Ukiah, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Carolina North Environmental Mapping/Ecological Assessment|| |
Chapel Hill and Carrboro, Orange County, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats played a key role in a master planning initiative for a 1,000 acre property, known as Carolina North, owned by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In an effort to help the University better understand the ecological processes influencing the property, value its complex array of integrated natural resources, and guide sustainable land development on the property long into the future, Biohabitats performed an ecological assessment of the site and produced a series of comprehensive, digital inventory maps illustrating all ecological attributes, ecological conditions, and suitability of development and resources protection. The project involved compiling existing information and field reconnaissance data to ultimately determine the site’s suitability to support development without compromising ecological stability and integrity. The property was mapped in a geographic information system (GIS) using existing data layers and empirical data from the site. Biohabitats defined the characteristics of each feature deemed critical to long-term ecological stability and integrity or having the potential to influence the landscape’s ability to recover from disturbance. The suitability of the landscape to support ecologically sustainable development was determined through a series of analyses and combinations of output. Throughout the environmental mapping and ecological assessment, Biohabitats’ efforts remained grounded in the principles of sustainable and regenerative design.
|Carolina North Environmental Mapping/Ecological Assessment||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Chapel Hill and Carrboro, Orange County, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Carolina North Individual Permit|| |
Chapel Hill, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats played a key role in a master planning initiative for a 947-acre property, known as Carolina North, owned by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. As part of a multi-disciplinary consultant team, Biohabitats helped formulate a strategy for the sustainable development of the site. As part of that task, Biohabitats delineated all jurisdictional wetlands, streams and buffers, and those areas where proposed utility infrastructure was expected to impact those features off-site. Biohabitats also prepared all application documents for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Individual Permit and State of North Carolina 401 Water Quality Certification, prepared the NEPA/SEPA Environmental Assessment, and coordinated between the consulting engineers, University staff, and Federal and State Agencies. This project was extraordinary in that Phase One of the planned Carolina North campus development spans 50 years, and Individual Permits generally expire after 20 years. Through intensive negotiations with regulatory agencies, Bohabitats resolved the project’s unique regulatory permitting obstacles and obtained an Individual Permit for 50 years.
|Carolina North Individual Permit||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Carolina North Infrastructure|| |
Chapel Hill, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats participated in a multi-disciplinary planning effort for the proposed 250-acre Carolina North campus in Chapel Hill, N.C. The planning focused on site infrastructure and sustainable design. Over the course of several months, the University and its consultant team developed principles, strategies, metrics, and goals for the infrastructure, natural landscape, and built environment of Carolina North. While some of the goals may be achieved early in the project, others reflect desired conditions for a 30-year horizon. The sustainability vision was then used by the University and the design team, along with many other inputs and background studies, to layout and test various development scenarios and to develop Site Development Guidelines. Representative themes and principles that were developed include: Account for existing and potential natural capital of the site to inform the planning process and associated conservation/development strategies. Sustain and restore the structure, function, and beauty of an indigenous North Carolina Piedmont Forest in areas identified for conservation, and mimic it for areas identified for development. Design Carolina North as a walkable/bikeable campus. Design, construct, maintain, and operate Carolina North to be carbon neutral. Treat waste as a resource. Increase human potential. Encourage collaboration. Integrate research, education, and outreach in both built and non-built conditions.
|Carolina North Infrastructure||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Carolina North Stormwater Management Concept Plan|| |
Chapel Hill, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats developed a conceptual stormwater management plan for Carolina North, a 270-acre site that will be developed over a 50-year timeframe into a sustainable, world-class research and learning campus for the University of North Carolina. The plan meets multiple layers of regulatory requirements, including 401 water quality certification, local stormwater criteria, a regional nutrient strategy, and a development agreement with the Town of Chapel Hill. The hydrologic analysis involved assessment of existing and proposed conditions as well as the selection, placement, and sizing of proposed stormwater management features. These features include rainwater harvesting, bioretention, green roofs and wetlands that will be integrated into the building and landscape design. The principal philosophy behind Biohabitats’ approach was to control stormwater at its source and beneficially reuse captured rainwater to the maximum extent practicable.
|Carolina North Stormwater Management Concept Plan||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Carolina North Water and Energy Plan|| |
Chapel Hill, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats has played a key role in the planning and design of a 1,000- acre property owned by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The property, known as Carolina North, will be a research and mixed-use academic campus intended to promote synergy among research, business, science, law and technology. Envisioned as a highly green environment, the campus is specifically designed to be a model of sustainability and to take advantage of the latest technological developments. As Carolina North moves from planning to implementation, Biohabitats has begun engineering design of stormwater practices on the site, and provided valuable insight for the campus integrated water strategy by assessing local water sources and campus water demand. A water balance is a powerful planning tool, as it quantifies water demand and helps identify reasonable approaches for conservation, efficiency gains, or development of new sources. Working with the University, Biohabitats created a dynamic water balance model that examined a diverse suite of potential non-potable water supplies to meet cooling, toilet flushing and irrigation demands for the new campus development. The water balance was performed on a monthly basis, accounting for seasonality of sources (such as surface stormwater) and demands (such as cooling). The effort included an integrated approach to water and energy, where various water strategies are investigated and evaluated based on potable water use, cost, and energy consumption. This effort aids the University in its goal of developing a campus dedicated to sustainability, with a substantial reduction in potable water usage expected based on this modeling effort.
|Carolina North Water and Energy Plan||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Carriage Hills Stormwater Restoration|| |
Annapolis, Maryland , United States A severely incised and unattractive tributary to Clements Creek was experiencing erosion and sedimentation resulting from unstable soils and a stormwater dominated hydrologic regime. Areas in its flow path were also dominated by invasive plant species such as multiflora rose and honeysuckle. Outside of the flow path, relatively mature woodlands persisted 15 to 20 feet above the invert of the channel. Biohabitats developed a restoration design which used a regenerative stormwater conveyance approach to convert the incised and headcutting outfall channel into a stable seepage wetland ecosystem well linked to its historic floodplain. The restoration provides stable conveyance and water quality treatment of stormwater flowing to Clements Creek. By recharging the groundwater table, this approach also helps support a number of threatened plant species associated with Anne Arundel County’s native acid seep wetland systems. Biohabitats’ restoration design package included cost estimates, construction details, specifications and implementation guidance (e.g. sequence of operations, operation & maintenance). The designs were approved by state and local authorities and the project was constructed in one month.
|Carriage Hills Stormwater Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Annapolis, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Cedar Springs Apartments Greywater Treatment & Reuse|| |
La Verne, California , United States A Community of Friends (ACOF) is one of the largest non-profit affordable housing developers in the Los Angeles area, and strives to provide safe housing for homeless, disabled, and very low income persons that is also sustainably built and maintained. Cedar Springs Apartments is a multi-family affordable housing community located in La Verne, California, approximately 30 miles east of Los Angeles. The community, which consists of 36 residential units, a community building, and a retail building, sought a solution for reducing potable water use. Biohabitats designed and permitted a greywater treatment and reuse system to collect greywater from the building lavatory sinks, showers, and laundry machines and treat it to meet 100% of the non-potable demand for in-building toilet flushing and site irrigation. The system consists of a textile filter, followed by microfiltration and disinfection. The use of the system will save 605,000 gallons of potable water annually, or about 12.1 million gallons over a 20 year period. Cedar Springs has earned LEED for Homes Platinum Certification.
|Cedar Springs Apartments Greywater Treatment & Reuse||Integrated Water Strategies,||La Verne, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Center for Aquatic Life and Conservation|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States To complement its world-renown Inner Harbor facility, the National Aquarium in Baltimore proposed developing a new aquatic animal care and conservation education center on a site along the Middle Branch of the Patapsco River. As part of a master planning team led by Ayers Saint Gross and Michael Vergason Landscape Architects, Biohabitats integrated an adaptive management approach into the design of the multiple-phase campus development plan that includes the renovation of a public works garage, a public park, water access piers, and ecological demonstration gardens. Among the strategies proposed were tidal wetland and woodland restoration, phytoremediation, and upland water treatment wetlands, all of which are aimed at regenerating ecological processes in a portion of the Middle Branch riparian corridor and shoreline. These efforts related directly to the Aquarium’s mission by supporting Chesapeake Bay ecosystem recovery and inspiring stewardship of aquatic environments. Biohabitats’ main objective was to demonstrate how the ecological interests of the project could be best served by using an adaptive management strategy that establishes a series of natural processes, monitors them over time, and adjusts elements according to the continual evolution of the elements and their processes. This strategy also supported program development and enhancement of the visitor experience.
|Center for Aquatic Life and Conservation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Central Delaware Trail Extension|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States Philadelphia recently adopted a plan to transform a six-mile stretch along the Central Delaware River into a waterfront that will revitalize and redevelop that section of the city. A key feature of the plan is changing the decayed urban industrial infrastructure into an inviting space that encourages public access and use of the waterfront. Biohabitats was commissioned to extend an existing trail and provide better access to Washington Avenue Green, a new public space created by Biohabitats as a design-build project on the Delaware in 2010. The extension was on a challenging parcel: a narrow strip of constricted, mostly paved area threading between private parcels and the river. The first step in the design was to remove much of the existing concrete. This reduced the impervious surface while increasing permeable retention zones to capture stormwater runoff. Biohabitats’ plan replaced concrete slabs with a mixture of soil media, interspersed amongst repurposed concrete rubble, paying homage to the site’s industrial history with these “rubble meadows” that flank the trail (shown at top left, before before planting and growth of native vegetation). In addition to concrete removal, the construction contractor cleared additional debris and regraded existing soil mounds fringed by weedy invasive vegetation. Implemented efforts removed the invasive species that dominated the site, predominantly Japanese knotweed, and repopulated the site with native trees, shrubs, grasses, and wildflower plantings. The space now serves as a more appealing and creative transitional zone to Washington Avenue Green and reconnects the northern gateway to the future Delaware River Wetland Park Trail.
|Central Delaware Trail Extension||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Central Delaware Wetlands Park Trail & Pier Assessment|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States The Master Plan for the Central Delaware River describes an ambitious project of transforming a section of Philadelphia’s industrial waterfront to a large wetland park as part of the revitalization and redevelopment of the waterfront. Central to that plan is a green corridor from Pier 53 to Pier 70 that includes a section of the Delaware River Trail. An interim trail currently runs through the wetlands section, but does not yet meet its potential as an attraction or habitat area. In 2012, Biohabitats assessed the ecological and cultural potential along this stretch of waterfront, provided a vision of what the area could become, and developed a roadmap to achieve it. Biohabitats performed an ecological assessment of the soils and habitat types along the trail, and developed practical, adaptive management strategies for controlling certain invasive species while allowing some hardy non-native species to continue to play their important role in bank stabilization. Moreover, the assessment articulated some of the unique qualities of the place, which should serve as a foundation for further planning. The area itself is an artifact, a remnant of the industrial and maritime history and testament to the ingenuity that has shaped Philadelphia’s economy and culture since its inception. Since the abandonment of industry along this stretch of waterfront, nature has reclaimed the infrastructure, revealing patterns that reflect the tension between human endeavor and the immutable forces of nature. Biohabitats took these characteristics into account to craft a concept that plays to the site’s strengths, opportunities and challenges. The result of the assessment was a document that highlights three nodes with high potential for passive recreational use and great views of the Philadelphia skyline. The assessment also includes a vegetation management plan that aims to enhance the vegetation composition and habitat of this novel ecosystem.
|Central Delaware Wetlands Park Trail & Pier Assessment||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Chagrin River Watershed Floodplain Restoration and Stormwater Management Guidance|| |
Willoughby, Ohio , United States The Chagrin River Watershed Partners, Inc. (CRWP) is a non-profit organization formed by local governments within the Chagrin River watershed in response to increasing concerns about flooding, erosion, and water quality problems. In 2004, CRWP developed a Comprehensive Storm Water Management Model Ordinance. The model, which serves as a template for townships, villages, communities and park districts to use in addressing water quality and quantity controls, allows for the use of floodplain restoration as an alternative stormwater management practice. While the production of the model was indeed a positive step, many local design and review engineers were not experienced in using floodplain restoration for stormwater management. They needed guidance on how to site, plan, design, permit, and maintain floodplain restoration amidst development while also complying with stormwater regulations. In an effort to address this need, Biohabitats worked with CRWP to further define the stormwater management benefits of floodplain restoration and provide instructions for incorporating it into stormwater planning for a development site. In addition to outlining guidance related to applicability, planning, design, permitting, and maintenance considerations, Biohabitats illustrated how floodplain restoration can be incorporated into a planned development by applying the concept to a hypothetical subdivision.
|Chagrin River Watershed Floodplain Restoration and Stormwater Management Guidance||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Willoughby, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Chagrin River Watershed Partners BMP Monitoring|| |
Erie, Cuyahoga, & Lake Counties, Ohio , United States The Chagrin River watershed, which drains approximately 267 square miles to Lake Erie in northeast Ohio, has experienced significant development pressure as Cleveland’s population migrates out from urban core to outlying suburbs. The Chagrin River Watershed Partners, Inc. (CRWP) is a collaboration of cities, villages, townships, counties, and park districts working on innovative solutions to flooding, erosion, and water quality problems to minimize the impacts of development in the watershed. To help CRWP develop science-based tools and practices to minimize the impact of stormwater on Ohio’s coastal communities and Lake Erie, Biohabitats and the North Carolina State University (NCSU) partnered to characterize and evaluate the performance of six innovative stormwater best management practices (BMPs). This project is a collaboration of CRWP, Old Woman Creek National Estuarine Research Reserve, Ohio Department of Natural Resources Divisions of Soil and Water Resources, Erie Soil and Water Conservation District, and the Consensus Building Institute. These organizations comprise the project team, however a larger “Collaborative Learning Group” that represents all facets of the stormwater profession is integrally involved in this project. Over the course of two years, Biohabitats and NCSU are monitoring six BMPs for hydrologic and hydraulic performance. The BMPs include bioretention, pervious pavement, enhanced swales, grass filter strips, and dry detention basins retrofitted to provide additional infiltration. This involves designing and retrofitting the BMPs, per CRWP specifications, to accommodate hydrologic monitoring equipment. Biohabitats and NCSU will combine the monitoring data with data sets from similar monitoring activities to model the performance of Low Impact Development (LID) BMPs and their effectiveness in reducing peak discharges and runoff volumes. Biohabitats and NCSU are also documenting the costs of BMP design, construction, and maintenance. Based on these results, the project team and collaborative learning group will translate the results into user friendly design
|Chagrin River Watershed Partners BMP Monitoring||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Erie, Cuyahoga, & Lake Counties, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Chase Pier Feasibility Study|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States The Inner Harbor of Baltimore has long been impaired by runoff from its watershed. A goal to clean the harbor to swimmable and fishable conditions by 2020 has been set by the Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore and adopted by the mayor of Baltimore. Biohabitats has developed a suite of innovative ideas to improve water quality and habitat in the Harbor while increasing public awareness, engagement and participation. Among these ideas was a concept to convert Chase Pier, an unused, dilapidated pier in the Fells Point neighborhood, into an ecological and sculptural public attraction that cleans polluted Harbor water. The concept consists of a constructed wetland on the top of the pier that will filter bacteria, nitrogen, phosphorus, and other pollutants through uptake and conversion by plants and microorganisms. Waterfalls around the edges of the pier will add oxygen to the water to create a better habitat for fish and other aquatic creatures as well as remove pollutants. Biohabitats was contracted to investigate the feasibility of making this concept a reality. A project team was assembled to evaluate the structural integrity of the pier and provide recommendations and costs for the necessary improvements to support the loads associated with the concept.
|Chase Pier Feasibility Study||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Chevy Branch Stream and Riparian Wetland Restoration|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States In coordination with the Cuyahoga Remedial Action Plan, Biohabitats provided technical design and consulting services to the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District to restore 220 linear feet of Chevy Branch within the City of Cleveland. Woody debris and trees from the stream’s eroding banks had caused its carrying capacity to diminish, resulting in bank erosion, loss of aquatic habitat and flooding. Biohabitats conducted a detailed site survey; performed hydrologic and hydraulic analyses; developed design alternatives; assisted with permitting; prepared final design and construction plans; assisted with bidding and recommendations for award; and provided construction management, including an on-site workshop. Biohabitats also provided assistance and instructions to community members who volunteered to install trees and shrubs. Biohabitats’ work was completed on schedule without any cost overruns.
|Chevy Branch Stream and Riparian Wetland Restoration||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Cinnamon Lane Outfall Rehabilitation|| |
Parole, Maryland , United States Unmanaged discharge from a network of stormwater outfalls was eroding residential property in a neighborhood located not far from the banks of the South River, which flows to the Chesapeake Bay. To treat the unmanaged stormwater and stabilize the erosion along the outfall drainage paths, in addition to protecting the community’s infrastructure and property, Biohabitats developed a design to rehabilitate the outfall channels using a regenerative stormwater conveyance approach. The implementation of this project will result in credits for the County toward their Chesapeake Bay TMDL goals and National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) permit requirements. Biohabitats began by conducting hydrology and hydraulic modeling, environmental resources inventory, and a limited Environmental Assessment. Century Engineering provided topographic survey, performed a desktop property evaluation to determine property ownership and parcel and easement boundaries, and the prepared easements. Biohabitats evaluated the streambed profile, baseflow water surface and floodplain elevations, and prepared schematic design options for treatment of the unmanaged stormwater. The proposed schematic designs were developed to meet the project goals of providing treatment of the unmanaged stormwater along the ephemeral portions of these outfall channels, while designing stable conveyance along the entire length of both outfall channels. The selected schematic designs involved the abandonment and removal of failing drop structure infrastructure along the main outfall drainage path, minimized impacts to existing natural resources, and met all the design criteria for regenerative step-pool stormwater conveyance, thus allowing the County to gain credits toward their TDML and impervious area treatment goals. As part of the final design process, Biohabitats conducted a field meeting with permitting agency staff, and prepared and submitted all permit applications. Project completion involves assistance with contractor procurement and working with the County’s Arlington Echo Outdoor Education Center to create a planting list
|Cinnamon Lane Outfall Rehabilitation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Parole, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Aiken Environmental Inventory|| |
Aiken, South Carolina , United States The City of Aiken, South Carolina is located in the Sandhills region, with the Piedmont to the north and the Coastal Plain to the south. This convergence of physiographic provinces supports a very unique suite of habitats, and contains a stream with possibly the most diverse assemblage of macroinvertebrates documented anywhere in the world. In an effort to preserve its open spaces and valuable natural resources, the City of Aiken initiated a planning effort to identify and assess environmental areas as well as historic and educational points of interest. Biohabitats assessed the planning area, identified valuable natural, historic, cultural and educational resources, ranked their importance and recommend a strategy to maximize open space and habitat quality. Biohabitats’ inventory provided the City with valuable information that will help guide future land use decisions.
|City of Aiken Environmental Inventory||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Aiken, South Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Boulder Greenway Habitat Maintenance Evaluation and Work Plan|| |
Boulder, Colorado , United States The City of Boulder’s Greenways Program integrates management of riparian and wetland habitat into multiple other objectives – flood control, water quality, recreation – along the City’s stream corridors. Biohabitats was contracted to evaluate the effectiveness of the current habitat maintenance program as well as the City’s Greenways Design Guidelines. The information will be used to assist decision-makers in how to make the program most effective in the future. Research for the evaluation included reviewing maintenance crew logs to identify locations and types of past weed control and small-scale restoration projects, reviewing relevant documents, and conducting interviews. Field work involved walking along more than 20 stream reaches to assess habitat conditions, evidence of improvements, and opportunities for restoration. Biohabitats collected relevant information on native vegetation, weeds, channel morphology, streambank condition, and riparian width. Current conditions were qualitatively compared to previously documented conditions to evaluate changes over time. As a follow-up project, Biohabitats prepared the 2007 Habitat Maintenance Work Plan that incorporated our recommendations for management improvements.
|City of Boulder Greenway Habitat Maintenance Evaluation and Work Plan||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Boulder, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Boulder Wetland Assessment and Mapping|| |
Boulder, Colorado , United States The City of Boulder regulates wetlands within its boundaries. The City’s wetlands were inventoried in 1988, but had not been comprehensively remapped since, even though changes in land use, wetland science and mapping technology - and the discovery of new wetlands - had occurred. In need of accurate wetland maps and updated functional assessments to implement its regulatory program, the City called on Biohabitats to update boundaries, perform functional evaluations, and describe salient characteristics of each of its wetlands. Biohabitats team members surveyed the perimeter of every wetland, collected environmental and vegetation data, and mapped wetland boundaries on color aerial photographs. Biohabitats also conducted in-field functional evaluations, which included groundwater recharge and discharge, flood storage or alteration, sediment trapping, shoreline anchoring (erosion control), nutrient retention, food chain support, aquatic and wildlife habitat, and recreation and heritage values. In all, 93 wetlands covering a total area of 931 acres were mapped within City limits. Biohabitats provided the City with a report summarizing the results of the assessment, along with GIS shapefiles and a database containing detailed information about each wetland. Armed with this information, the City of Boulder is able to make better informed land use decisions now and in the future.
|City of Boulder Wetland Assessment and Mapping||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Boulder, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Bowie Invasive Species Management Study|| |
Bowie, Maryland , United States As Maryland’s 5th largest city, Bowie covers about 18 square miles of land in northeastern Prince George’s County. Many important natural resources are either contained within or are adjacent to the City’s boundaries. Large park areas can be found within the City, while the Patuxent River, the National Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, and Belt Woods National Natural Landmark are all within a half mile of its boundaries. All of these sensitive natural features are threatened by invasive plant species. In 2007, recognizing the economic, social, and ecological benefits of a healthy environmental infrastructure network of forests, parks, and open space, the City of Bowie crafted an Environmental Infrastructure Action Strategy Plan to protect and enhance existing natural resources and amenities. To help the City meet the goals the Environmental Infrastructure Action Strategy Plan, Biohabitats conducted an Invasive Species Management Study for 328 acres of city- owned parcels throughout the City. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the extent to which invasive species are located on the parcels and to recommend strategies for managing invasive species to achieve successful afforestation and improved forest condition. The study provided the City with 1) an assessment of and prioritization for control of invasive plant concentrations within the study area, 2) the current intervention methodologies available for allocating limited invasive suppression resources, and 3) the budget required to conduct an effective invasive species management plan. Study tasks included an assessment of invasive species, evaluation of site conditions, site prioritization, operational review of City policies and practices, short- and long-term maintenance recommendations, and planning-level cost estimates for their implementation.
|City of Bowie Invasive Species Management Study||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Bowie, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Cambridge Comprehensive Plan|| |
Cambridge, Maryland , United States The City of Cambridge is located along the south bank of the Choptank River on the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay. The City, which covers approximately ten square miles, is the urban center for Dorchester County. Overall the area is relatively low, flat, and divided by a network of tidal streams. The combination of a high water table, poorly draining soils, low elevation, subsidence and sea level rise creates a landscape that is heavily influenced by stormwater. Rain events occurring during high tides often lead to substantial flooding throughout the City. Biohabitats was asked by a town planning firm to analyze an array of ecological systems and natural resources that influence the City and surrounding areas. Biohabitats identified and assessed natural resources to determine suitability for development without compromising ecological stability and integrity. Biohabitats gathered and analyzed existing data and generated inventory and suitability maps at a regional scale. The maps were reviewed by the public and comments solicited at a stakeholder meeting informed additional assessment at a local (urban core) scale. Biohabitats’ analysis included: considering the benefits of tidal and non-tidal wetlands; assessing the presence of forest interior dwelling species; evaluating riparian environments; assessing storm surge impacts; determining the role of tree canopy; and evaluating the connectivity of woodland parcels and riparian areas. This suitability analysis resulted in the delineation of potential development and resource protection zones, which informed an update to the City’s comprehensive plan.
|City of Cambridge Comprehensive Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Cambridge, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Durham Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Durham, North Carolina|| |
Durham, North Carolina , United States Many streams and lakes in central North Carolina are impacted by pollutants in stormwater runoff. To help address the problem, Biohabitats teamed with North Carolina State University (NCSU) and the City of Durham to design and provide construction oversight for a project on a highly eroded tributary to Third Fork Creek. Third Fork Creek’s flow eventually drains to Jordan Lake, where stormwater nutrient reduction rules apply. Monitoring in Third Fork Creek, a Clean Water Act 303d-listed impaired stream, has shown that copper, turbidity, fecal bacteria and a lack of dissolved oxygen contribute to the stream’s impairment. Sponsored by a 319 Non-point Source grant, this project used a technique called “Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance” (RSC) to improve channel stability and ecology, and also provide controlled conveyance and cleansing of polluted stormwater. RSC design facilitates water quality improvement by filtering stormwater runoff through a layer of sand and wood chips. The existing, highly eroded channel was graded to accommodate the sand/wood chip mixture, and this media is held in place by a series of boulder cascades with pools at their base. RSC is a relatively new stormwater control technique, and its effectiveness is being studied by NCSU. To date, documented water quality benefits of RSCs include runoff rate and nutrient concentration reduction and enhanced channel and riparian area habitat.
|City of Durham Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Durham, North Carolina||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Durham, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Fort Wayne Riverfront Development Study|| |
Fort Wayne, Indiana , United States Three rivers are the heart of Fort Wayne and all of northeast Indiana: St. Joseph, St. Mary’s and the Maumee. Biohabitats is helping create a plan to make them vital again. In the early 1900s, these rivers created Fort Wayne, and they long remained at the forefront of the planning and development of the city. However, in recent decades they have been underutilized for development and revitalization. This trend continued through the early 2000s, when citizens and stakeholders began to try to return the river systems to their position as the centerpiece of Fort Wayne’s landscape heritage and make them a venue for revitalization, recreation and restoration. As a result of these efforts, the City is conducting a Riverfront Development Study that will detail specific strategies and implementation steps to creating a world-class downtown riverfront district. The topics to be addressed include land use, engineering and infrastructure investment, watershed issues, trail connectivity, access to the river, urban design guidelines and relevant facilities. Biohabitats assessed the ecological conditions and developed recommendations for a living infrastructure framework that provides a foundation for revitalization and restoration opportunities along the three rivers. Biohabitats staff conducted literature reviews, desktop analysis and field investigations to establish current ecological conditions within the study area. Biohabitats also participated in a number of meetings with community members and project stakeholders to draw on their local knowledge and experience and present our initial findings. Biohabitats’ proposed “living infrastructure framework” integrates ecological restoration priorities, conservation, low impact development, green infrastructure, and other opportunities into a cohesive structure that can guide future land use planning and redevelopment decisions for the City.
|City of Fort Wayne Riverfront Development Study||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Fort Wayne, Indiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Jamestown Chadakoin Riverfront Revitalization|| |
Jamestown, New York , United States Jamestown is located at the southern tip of Chautauqua Lake, a popular summer destination for Great Lakes region vacationers. The Chadakoin River corridor, which runs through the center of Jamestown, was known, historically, for its furniture production and other industry. This long history of industry left a legacy of contaminated sites (brownfields) along an important tributary to the Allegheny River. Like many cities in the Great Lakes region, the industrial base has experienced a gradual decline over the past decades and the local economy has suffered. At the same time, the river corridor includes very important wetlands and other natural resource areas that provide important habitat for migratory birds and other species, including the Eastern spiny softshell turtle, a State species of special concern. In order to develop a comprehensive revitalization plan along the Chadakoin River, the Jamestown Urban Renewal Agency initiated a study to identify brownfield reuse, ecological restoration and enhancement, and waterfront revitalization opportunities that would celebrate the River, reinvigorate the waterfront, and connect the community with its history, ecology, and economic potential. A key member of the study team, Biohabitats assessed ecological conditions and developed recommendations for a living infrastructure framework that provides a foundation for revitalization and restoration opportunities along the Chadakoin River. Biohabitats staff conducted literature reviews, desktop analyses and field investigations to establish current ecological conditions within the study area. Biohabitats also participated in a number of public meetings with community members and project stakeholders to draw on their local knowledge and experience. Biohabitats’ proposed “living infrastructure framework” integrated ecological restoration priorities, conservation, low impact development, green infrastructure, and other opportunities into a cohesive structure that can guide future land use planning and redevelopment decisions.
|City of Jamestown Chadakoin Riverfront Revitalization||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Jamestown, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|City of Macultepec Wastewater Treatment|| |
Tabasco , Mexico Macultepec is a city of 50,000 inhabitants located in the State of Tabasco. The municipal sewer had been discharging untreated sewage into the nearby Pantanos de Centla Biosphere Reserve, a biologically diverse area that is home to more than 550 species of flora and fauna. The State required a wastewater treatment system that would protect the ecologically rich Biosphere Preserve and improve service to its constituents. Given the cost of energy and the state’s inability to charge for wastewater service, an energy efficient, inexpensive solution was needed. Biohabitats, in collaboration with Dr. Firdaus Jhabvala, designed a totally passive treatment system that has no moving parts. Treatment consists of a primary sedimentation tank, a reed bed for treatment of solids, and surface flow constructed wetland, plus a UV disinfection Unit. Treated effluent flows into the Gonzalez River which feeds into the Biosphere Reserve. Construction costs were 500 pesos/person (about $38) and operational costs are 50 centavos/person per month (3.8 cents). Treatment capacity is 125 lps (2.85 million gpd). The plant has become a model for large-scale waste water treatment based entirely on constructed wetlands.
|City of Macultepec Wastewater Treatment||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||, Tabasco, Mexico||featured-project featured|
|City of Rockville Rain Barrel Workshops|| |
Rockville, Maryland , United States The City of Rockville’s RainScapes Rewards Program aims to incentivize and empower City homeowners to implement on-lot practices such as rain barrels and conservation landscaping in order to reduce stormwater impacts on City waterways and encourage water conservation and re-use. Biohabitats provided a variety of technical services during the spring and summer of 2009 to assist the City in its rain barrel outreach efforts. These services included developing public outreach materials, planning and installing four rain barrel demonstration projects at City community centers, conducting four public workshops for City residents, and developing educational signage. Working with City staff, Biohabitats designed and delivered presentations on the benefits, selection, installation, and maintenance of rain barrels at the Rockville Senior Center, Lincoln Park Community Center, Twinbrook Community Recreation Center, and the Croydon Creek Nature Center, as well as the Activity Center at Bohrer Park in Gaithersburg. Audience sizes ranged as high as 50 participants per workshop, and audience evaluations indicated a high level of satisfaction with the content and quality of delivery. Outreach materials developed under this contract are currently available on the City’s RainScapes website. The rain barrel installations were designed to serve as permanent demonstration projects in publicly-accessible locations. The designs placed a priority on safety, efficient operation, and aesthetic appeal. Biohabitats also designed interpretive signage that was subsequently installed at each site. The signs provide basic information about the benefits of rain barrels and serve as a permanent educational amenity. Responding to a request by City staff, Biohabitats also developed three interpretive signs that explain the purpose and benefits of City stormwater ponds.
|City of Rockville Rain Barrel Workshops||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Rockville, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Clarksburg Town Center Water Quality Monitoring|| |
Montgomery County, Maryland , United States Clarksburg Town Center is located in Clarksburg, Maryland in the north central portion of Montgomery County. The site consists of 268 acres of land currently under development for commercial and residential use, and is located within the drainage area of headwater tributaries of Little Seneca Creek. Due to the ecological significance of this watershed, Little Seneca Creek has Special Protection Area (SPA) designation from the Montgomery County Council. As a result of the SPA designation, stringent measures are required to protect water quality and quantity toward maintaining the integrity of the biological resources within the watershed. Due to our expertise in natural resource assessment, Biohabitats was hired to work with County staff and developers to establish goals for the project. Project goals include minimizing stormwater runoff and maintaining predevelopment stream storm flow conditions, minimizing ambient water temperatures, minimizing reductions in stream baseflow, and minimizing sediment and pollutant loading. Biohabitats role also includes establishing and implementing a monitoring program to track success toward meeting project goals. The monitoring program is designed to document baseline conditions; assess the effectiveness of sediment and erosion control measures during construction; and demonstrated the success of the innovative and redundant stormwater management measures required at this site following construction.
|Clarksburg Town Center Water Quality Monitoring||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Cleveland Metroparks Natural Resources Management Plan|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States Cleveland Metroparks includes 22,000 acres of open space that define one of the most interconnected, extensive urban park systems in the U.S. The Park District’s mission is to “conserve significant natural resources and enhance people’s lives by integrating high-quality outdoor education, recreation and zoological opportunities into people’s lives.” The Natural Resources (NR) Division, comprised of natural resources managers, biologists and ecologists, offers critical scientific and management support for this mission. In 2015, the NR Division contracted Biohabitats to help craft a guidance document that would serve as a tool to communicate to the Board of Park Commissioners, Cleveland Metroparks staff, and the general public about natural resources management considerations and future actions. Biohabitats helped the NR Division identify the target audience and key themes of the Plan, synthesized and compiled data describing the current status of the natural resources throughout the system, drafted the plan, and established a framework for updating it. The plan explains the three principles that guide Cleveland Metroparks in the management and protection of natural resources. The first is to provide lasting stewardship of the Park District’s flora, fauna, and geological resources. Secondly, the NR Division prioritizes scale and connectivity when making resource decisions, and finally, the Division practices science-based adaptive management to account for conditions that change through time. This plan provides an overview of Metroparks’ natural resources and its threats, needs, and opportunities. In the long term, the NR Management Plan will serve as a framework for the holistic management of the Metroparks natural resources. The final plan also communicates immediate priorities and outlines near-term projects to protect, restore, and maintain the natural resources of the park district.
|Cleveland Metroparks Natural Resources Management Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Cobbs Creek Stream Restoration Feasibility and Basis of Design Studies|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States In support of its programmatic goals aimed at improving the environment of the Philadelphia area while controlling combined sewer overflows, the Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) has advanced a series of studies and restoration projects along the Cobbs Creek stream corridor. Working collaboratively with PWD and project partners, Biohabitats assessed the feasibility of accomplishing natural stream restoration design for 7.1 miles of Cobbs Creek. The Cobbs Creek Stream Restoration Feasibility Study informed decision making along the stream corridor by summarizing existing conditions and developing planning-level cost estimates to undertake the restoration program. Following the Feasibility Study, PWD selected the upstream-most portions of Cobbs Creek, which flow through a golf course, for the evaluation of design options. Biohabitats then performed targeted field work, analyzed and integrated available information, and conducted hydraulic modeling to develop restoration design concepts for those segments. A special challenge was that portions of the golf course regularly experienced events that inundated greens and fairways. To address this issue, Biohabitats developed a conceptual-level design that would integrate natural channel design and wetland restoration techniques to achieve environmental benefits such as water quality improvements and riparian enhancement, while also reducing flooding risks along the golf cours
|Cobbs Creek Stream Restoration Feasibility and Basis of Design Studies||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Columbia Stream and Upland Restoration|| |
Columbia, Maryland , United States A 30-year master plan for the revitalization of Columbia, MD, a 16,450-acre planned community founded in the 1960s, strived to maintain the city’s original focus on being socially responsible, environmentally friendly, and financially successful. The plan established a goal to restore a healthy forest structure dominated by native tree species, but the city’s two watersheds were both degraded by channelization and invasive species. Biohabitats developed and implemented the first two phases of restoration for both watersheds. This included 800 linear feet of stream restoration and the reforestation of over 20 acres of woodlands. As a first step to recreate a thriving natural forest system, Biohabitats developed a strategy to eradicate or control invasive species, reforest cleared areas with native trees and shrubs, and enhance the understory of existing forest stands. Biohabitats also created a design to stabilize an eroding tributary to the Little Patuxent River so that it could withstand a 100-year flow and provide fish passage and habitat upstream of Symphony Woods Road. Biohabitats performed an existing conditions site assessment to determine and document the ecological communities and invasive species present. A multiphase approach for invasive species removal and replanting with native species was then developed, along with a three-year maintenance program to completely sever the foothold of invasive species. In order to establish a strong native plant community that was resistant to invasive vegetation, Biohabitats used mechanical removal, stump treatment, and Glyphosate to control invasives such as Russian olive, wild grape, and English ivy. After nearly a year of control, Biohabitats replanted 16 acres with suitable native vegetation. The planting plan included strategies to make the conditions less favorable for exotic pioneer species. These included augmenting the native species in the forest understory and creating a dense barrier of native evergreens at the forest edge to
|Columbia Stream and Upland Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Columbia, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Comprehensive Drainage and Stormwater Management Plan for Real Food Farm|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States
|Comprehensive Drainage and Stormwater Management Plan for Real Food Farm||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States|
|Concourse Lake Sediment Redistribution|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States Concourse Lake is a 3.5-acre, concrete basin within Philadelphia’s Fairmount Parks System. Over time, sediment has accumulated within the lake, significantly reducing the open water footprint and transforming much of the lake into a shallow pool. A one-acre island has formed in the western portion lake, which has a maximum depth of only four feet. The sediment issue continues, as stormwater from nearby, upslope fields, enters the lake through two inlets at its northwest end. As an alternative to costly dredging and sediment disposal, Biohabitats helped Fairmount Parks to envision a less costly and more sustainable plan that involved redistributing the sediment within the pond. Biohabitats prepared construction plans for the redistribution, and provided construction management oversight of the contractor. The project involved dewatering the lake by pumping its water through a sediment trap, and then allowing it to flow into an outlet to an adjacent lake. After adequate dewatering, the bulk of sediment was redistributed to the west end of the lake. The sediment was then graded to establish a shallow marsh and a series of shallow pools that convey water around the existing island to the east end of the lake that is maintained as the deeper, open water section. This approach provides a longer flowpath, which equates to improved water quality. In addition, the increased diversity of the pond results in an increased diversity of flora and fauna in this park setting.
|Concourse Lake Sediment Redistribution||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Constructed Wetlands Water Treatment for Sea Lion Exhibit|| |
Columbia, South Carolina , United States The mission of Riverbanks Zoo, located near the confluence of the Saluda and Broad Rivers, is “to foster appreciation and concern for all living things” The Zoo’s new, state-of-the-art Sea Lion Landing exhibit demonstrates that mission—not only with its dynamic design and multiple underwater vantage points, but also with the way its wastewater is handled. Working with Riverbanks Zoo, CLR Design, and internationally renowned zoo life-support system designer, Ted Maranda, Biohabitats developed an integrated strategy to naturally treat and recover filter backwash from the exhibit’s 300,000 gallons of water. The system includes an underground equalization tank followed by constructed wetlands, which are embedded in the zoo’s landscape. After the majority of solids settle out by gravity in the tank, water is pumped through the wetlands, which passively filter nitrogen, phosphorus, and other pollutants before water is returned to the exhibit. The system prevents saline wastewater from being discharged to the municipal sewer, and is projected to save the Zoo approximately 52,000 gallons of water per year. It also greatly reduces the cost of creating the salt water for the exhibit.
|Constructed Wetlands Water Treatment for Sea Lion Exhibit||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Columbia, South Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Corn Creek Wastewater Treatment System & Fire Pond|| |
Corn Creek Field Station, Nevada , United States Located about 20 miles north of Las Vegas, Nevada, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s (FWS) Corn Creek Field Station provides primary access to the Desert National Wildlife Refuge, a 1.5 million acre expanse of the Mojave Desert. The Refuge is located in the center of a unique riparian and wetland ecosystem that is fed by several deep aquifer springs. Corn Creek was home to Native Americans who were attracted to the lush plant and animal resources thriving around these springs for more than 5,000 years. The protection and preservation of the Refuge’s native species and their habitats is central to its mission. When the FWS planned to construct a new, 16,000-square-foot visitor center at Corn Creek to improve the interpretive and educational experience at the Refuge, they sought a wastewater management system that would be appropriate for such a unique and challenging setting. As a key member of the site design team, Biohabitats created a natural wastewater treatment and groundwater recharge system designed to handle over 2,000 gpd of wastewater from the site. Featuring constructed wetlands and an intermittent sand filter, the system also serves as a learning landscape, providing educational opportunities for visitors from the Las Vegas area to learn about the ecosystem dynamics at work in the Refuge. Biohabitats worked closely with the Client and design team to provide collection and equalization of effluent from the Visitor’s Center and myriad existing facilities. Following treatment, water is discharged by gravity through a shallow drain field, allowing the water to slowly percolate through the local soils before rejoining the groundwater. Biohabitats also provided ecological consulting and design for the renovation of one of the existing springs pools for use as a fire protection pond. Working with FWS biologists and Corn Creek staff, Biohabitats provided pond bottom topography,
|Corn Creek Wastewater Treatment System & Fire Pond||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Corn Creek Field Station, Nevada, United States||featured-project featured|
|Cove Spring Stream Restoration|| |
Frankfort, Kentucky , United States Cove Spring Run and Penitentiary Branch, which drain into the Kentucky River, demonstrate the natural history of the Frankfort area: karst topography remnants of historical dam structures and farm buildings, more recent residential and commercial development, and current flood management infrastructure. This history has impacted the stream channels, wetlands, and adjacent riparian lands. The Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife Resources, working through the City of Frankfort, funded the restoration of Cove Spring Run and Penitentiary Branch. The City turned to Biohabitats to lead this effort. Biohabitats restoration design included a variety of habitats: low and high gradient stream, riparian and wetland. The project encompasses two distinct conditions–one steep and dominated by limestone boulders, and one involving the old oxbow of the Kentucky River with a history of beaver ponds and wetlands. The project re-establishes natural hydrology, connects the tributaries to their wetlands, and supports native vegetation while limiting invasive plants. Biohabitats supervised the baseline aquatic monitoring, wetland delineation, land surveying, and basemap production as well as completed stream morphological measurements, evaluated bed material in the field, and performed hydrologic and hydraulic monitoring. Biohabitats also led a design workshop with the client. Construction was completed in Spring 2013, with Biohabitats having completed all aspects of field assessments, hydraulic and hydrologic modeling, stream restoration design, developing design plans for permitting with Kentucky Department of Water and US Army Corps of Engineers, Louisville District, bid documents, and construction oversight. Biohabitats is now performing the monitoring of the site.
|Cove Spring Stream Restoration||Ohio River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Frankfort, Kentucky, United States||featured-project featured|
|Crane/Domeyer/Willow Bar Feasibility Analysis & Initial Designs|| |
Columbia County, Oregon , United States Bordered by the Willamette River to the south, the Columbia River to the east and Multnomah Channel to the west, Oregon’s Sauvie Island Wildlife Area supports a biologically diverse assemblage of birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians, as well as numerous species of fish and plants. In an effort to restore estuary habitat critical to the recovery of threatened and endangered salmon species utilizing the Columbia River Estuary, the Columbia River Estuary Study Taskforce (CREST) and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife initiated a project to restore three sites in the Wildlife Area: Crane, Domeyer, and Willow Bar. All three sites had isolated wetlands which were sporadically connected, and one site had a failing water control structure. Biohabitats, in partnership with Wolf Water Resources (w2r), helped develop restoration alternatives for expanding floodplain and intertidal habitat at the three sites. Phase I of the project included conducting a feasibility study, modeling, and preparing initial designs for the three site locations. Biohabitats and w2r worked together with other members of the team to provide geomorphic context, hydrology and hydraulic modeling, alternatives analysis and cost estimates for all three sites. The design team worked with CREST to evaluate existing conditions and narrow down alternatives to provide a more cost effective and targeted modeling effort. This allowed the team to advance the designs, provide more accurate cost estimates for choosing final design alternatives, and maximize habitat benefits. Selected alternatives included constructed tidal channel connections, marsh scrape downs, and water control structure removal.
|Crane/Domeyer/Willow Bar Feasibility Analysis & Initial Designs||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Columbia County, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Creekside Stream Restoration and Wetland Mitigation|| |
Twinsburg, Ohio , United States Biohabitats relocated and restored approximately 1,000 feet of Tinker’s Creek, the largest tributary to the Cuyahoga River. The project also involved the creation of four acres of palustrine forested wetlands and the development of water quality best management practices. After assessing the stream and its riparian conditions, performing pre-construction monitoring, and conducting hydrological modeling, Biohabitats designed a new channel planform for Tinker’s Creek that increased aquatic habitat and carried projected stormflow without excessive erosion or sedimentation. The restoration included the use of rootwads, log vanes and live branch layering. Soil and groundwater characteristics were also obtained by field measurements and used to design a forested wetland incorporating wetland hydrology, hydric soils, and hydrophytic vegetation. With the proper wetland hydrology and soil in place, a variety of native plants typical of a forested wetland were planted. Biohabitats also developed a 10-year wetland mitigation and stream restoration monitoring protocol and conducted several years of post-construction monitoring. The stream monitoring included water quality, channel morphology, and fish and macroinvertebrate sampling. Wetland mitigation monitoring included groundwater monitoring, water quality sampling, soil sampling, and bi-annual vegetation sampling. Throughout this process, Biohabitats worked with state and federal regulatory agencies to ensure compliance with regulatory permits.
|Creekside Stream Restoration and Wetland Mitigation||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Twinsburg, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Crestwood Lake Flood Mitigation Study|| |
Westchester County, New York , United States Crestwood Lake is one of three significant lakes on the Bronx River. It spans approximately 10 acres and receives water from a 33-square-mile watershed. Located within the New York City Metropolitan Area, the lake had experienced excessive sedimentation and episodic flooding over the years caused by development in the Bronx River watershed. The dredging of Crestwood Lake had become a regular maintenance item for Westchester County over the last 40 to 50 years. In an effort to lessen the impacts of excessive sedimentation in Crestwood Lake and potentially improve flood storage capacity within the lake, Westchester County turned to the team of Biohabitats and HyrdoQual. After reviewing literature, performing a vegetative and shoreline assessment and studying the physical properties and chemistry of the sediment, the team developed a restoration report and three alternative strategies for restoring the lake. The County chose to move forward with a “minimum action” concept, which involved the planting of sediment bars and islands with native vegetation to further encourage the accumulation of sediment. The restoration concept will result in the development of a slow, shallow stream channel that lazily meanders through vegetated islands. The re-established riverine system provides habitat for water birds and a fish. The vegetation captures organic material, stabilizes the islands, and sequesters nutrients. The concept also involves the installation of a new path and viewing platforms modification of the lake outlet to allow for more flood capacity during storms. These improvements, along with other watershed initiatives may help reduce flooding along the Bronx River corridor and improve the ecological value of the watershed.
|Crestwood Lake Flood Mitigation Study||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Ecological Restoration,||Westchester County, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Crofton Tributary Stream Restoration|| |
Anne Arundel County, Maryland , United States In 2001, Biohabitats evaluated a 3,500-foot long degraded tributary network in Crofton, Maryland anddeveloped three detailed stream restoration concepts. Severe bank erosion and channel incision into loose Coastal Plain deposits threaten adjacent infrastructure in the residential community. Moreover, channel incision resulted in a drawdown of the groundwater table, which changed the plant community, and degraded water quality, and aquatic habitat. In 2007, Biohabitats was awarded a contract to develop a stream restoration design for the tributary. The goal was to restore watershed processes, including recharging the groundwater table to regenerate spring seeps. Biohabitats’ design reconnected the channel to its floodplain. This approach eliminates high and eroding banks, improves water quality and creates conditions favorable for native Anne Arundel County coastal plain biota while naturally controlling invasive species. The restoration design package included cost estimates, construction details, specifications and implementation guidance (e.g. sequence of operations, operation & maintenance). The reconstructed portion of the channel now functions naturally.
|Crofton Tributary Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Anne Arundel County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Croghan Park Raingarden Demonstration Project|| |
Fairlawn, Ohio , United States With 2.4 acres of playgrounds, basketball courts, tennis courts, trails, lawn, and picnic areas, Croghan Park is a recreation destination for thousands of Fairlawn, Ohio residents. But after heavy rain storms, three large, bowl-shaped lawn areas that collect rainfall and runoff are rendered unusable for extended periods of time. These three depressional lawn areas bisect and drain the park in a southeast to northwest direction. The central lawn area is drained by a series of under drains where water is infiltrated, collected and directed to a sump pump which then directs water under the northwest lawn area through a pipe and into a stormwater outlet. Biohabitats was approached to develop a stormwater treatment feature for this bypassed, northwest lawn area that not only mimics the appearance of a rain garden, but addresses the existing complex site hydrology while serving as a demonstration project to educate park visitors about the importance of stormwater management and show them techniques they can use at their own homes. Our approach was to create a two-tiered rain garden in the depressional area into which the pumped discharge is redirected. First, the discharge flows to the upper terrace, where it will can slowly infiltrate into the soil media and flow into the lower terrace. Stormwater will not only be treated by the soil media, but by a complex suite of native plants selected for the unique site conditions. The plants not only help filter the stormwater, but provide year-round interest to visitors and attract local pollinators and wildlife. Biohabitats led the design of the entire system, including sizing, soils and materials specifications, planting plan, interpretative signage and construction cost estimate.
|Croghan Park Raingarden Demonstration Project||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Fairlawn, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Croton Kensico Watershed Intermunicipal Coalition (CKWIC) Regional Stormwater Improvement Plan|| |
Westchester County, New York , United States The Croton and Kensico Reservoirs are significant sources of unfiltered drinking water for New York City. Because phosphorus is a primary pollutant of concern in both reservoirs, the MS4 General Permit for Stormwater Discharges within the drainage basin requires municipalities to develop and implement stormwater retrofit programs.that will meet annual phosphorous reduction targets set in the Croton Watershed Phase II Phosphorus TMDL Implementation Plan. Biohabitats, in association with O’Brien & Gere, Hahn Engineering, and Insite, developed a regional stormwater retrofit program, with a five-year implementation schedule and budget, for the 12 municipalities within the Westchester County portion of the reservoir drainage basins. Biohabitats developed desktop analysis and field evaluation plans that were utilized to identify and assess over 250 stormwater retrofit opportunities across the 12 municipalities. Biohabitats also developed and applied a total phosphorus accounting methodology to determine the potential reduction associated with the suite of stormwater retrofit opportunities. These opportunities included structural stormwater practices, non-structural stormwater practices, and stabilization of drainage channels. Biohabitats then ranked and prioritized the stormwater retrofits based on total phosphorus reduction, cost effectiveness and feasibility. The results of this prioritization were used to develop the five-year implementation plan, which was accepted by New York State Department of Environmental Conservation as meeting MS4 permit requirements.
|Croton Kensico Watershed Intermunicipal Coalition (CKWIC) Regional Stormwater Improvement Plan||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Westchester County, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Cuyahoga Valley Towpath Trail Stage 1|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States The Towpath Trail has become a defining feature in the Cuyahoga Valley landscape. Constructed over 175 years ago as part of the Ohio & Erie Canal, it began as a simple dirt path for animals pulling canal boats. Today it has become an extraordinary recreational amenity that highlights Cleveland’s industrial river valley and serves its surrounding neighborhoods and region. As the first stage in an effort to complete the Towpath Trail in Cuyahoga County, a multi-disciplinary team designed a ¾-mile extension of the multi-use trail along the banks of the Cuyahoga River. As the team’s ecological consultant, Biohabitats’ approach was to celebrate the industrial heritage of the valley while regenerating a natural environment that has suffered from two centuries of degradation. Biohabitats performed extensive field and desktop analyses which included preliminary hydraulic and hydrologic analyses and surveys of aquatic and terrestrial ecology, endangered species, and wetlands. The Biohabitats team identified numerous opportunities for regeneration along the Trail, all of which focused on restoring natural areas, such as river banks and forested floodplains; creating functional landscapes, such as living structures and urban plant nurseries; and managing rainwater with regenerative stormwater conveyance, rain gardens, and treatment wetlands. To aid the client in prioritizing these opportunities, Biohabitats produced concept and prioritization matrices outlining costs and benefits. Completion of the ecological component of this project represented a key step toward the County’s ultimate goal of creating approximately six additional miles of trail and greenway.
|Cuyahoga Valley Towpath Trail Stage 1||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Cypress Creek Restoration|| |
Harris County, Texas , United States The Cypress Creek watershed, a 320 square mile basin in Harris and Waller Counties, is the second largest and the second most undeveloped watershed in Harris County, Texas. At approximately 45 miles in length, the headwaters of the watershed are relatively undeveloped but transition into the developed urban landscape of Houston’s outer suburbs. Cypress Creek drains into Spring Creek northeast of Houston and ultimately makes its way to the Galveston Bay. The Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) is developing a Watershed Management Plan for Cypress Creek. As part of the management plan, HCFCD contracted with Biohabitats to develop a conceptual stream restoration design for 6,400 linear feet of Cypress Creek. A complete restoration design was developed for approximately 2,000 linear feet of Cypress Creek adjacent to Elizabeth Kaiser Meyer Park where the channel was actively eroding near a park’s playground. This subsection restoration is intended to serve as a demonstration project that will showcase the use of the natural channel design approach in addressing channel instability. In support of the management plan, Biohabitats conducted a geomorphic and ecological assessment of the Cypress Creek mainstem. Based on these findings of existing conditions and ongoing stream adjustments, a combination of restoration approaches were selected to address pronounced bank erosion and channel instability. These approaches were integrated in a channel and riparian restoration concept design, and, through coordination with HCFCD and its stakeholders, brought to full design. The channel geometry was developed to provide critical flood storage and account for sediment supply in this flashy, sand-dominated system. For the mainstem channel beyond the limits of the demonstration project, a set of design guidelines was developed to provide a framework for undertaking natural channel design, riparian and wetland restoration, and habitat enhancement strategies.
|Cypress Creek Restoration||Ecological Restoration,||Harris County, Texas, United States||featured-project featured|
|Darby Creek Bank Stabilization and Rock Vane Installation|| |
Darby, Pennsylvania , United States Biohabitats assisted The Delaware Riverkeeper Network by developing a stream bank stabilization plan, specifications and a cost estimate, along with providing construction oversight services for bank protection along a 200-linear foot reach of Darby Creek. After performing a site reconnaissance of the study reach and floodplain. Biohabitats prepared design drawings and specifications which included in-stream structures such as rock vane, rock cross vanes and rock W-vanes. Biohabitats coordinated construction activities with the Delaware Riverkeeper Network and the Darby Creek Sewer Authority and provided construction oversight for installation of the project. To divert flow around the work area, large sand bags were set in place so that base flow was directed to the other side of the channel. This enabled construction of about three quarters of the W weir. The sand bags were then relocated to the other side to allow completion of the work on the other bank.
|Darby Creek Bank Stabilization and Rock Vane Installation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Darby, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Davis Branch Stream Restoration|| |
Woodstock, Maryland , United States The Howard County Conservancy aims to educate people about the natural world, preserve the land and its legacy for future generations, and model responsible stewardship of our environment. This mission is demonstrated in the way they manage their 232-acre site, which is located in a watershed that has experienced significant development over recent decades. Like many creeks in the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area, Davis Branch, a stream that flows through Howard County Conservancy property, had become severely eroded by historic unsustainable land management practices and manipulated hydrology as a result of development in its upstream watershed. In an effort to ameliorate degraded channel conditions, the Howard County Stormwater Management Division sought a restoration solution that would not only align with the Conservancy’s mission but also support the County’s water quality improvement and restoration efforts under its NPDES MS4 Permit. Working closely with Howard County, the Conservancy, and community stakeholders, Biohabitats crafted a design to restore pre-disturbance aquatic function to Davis Branch, taking advantage of the unique rural character and minimal constraints within the stream’s riparian corridor. The design, which employs a variety of natural channel and floodplain structures using indigenous materials, establishes ecologically meaningful reconnection between the restored stream and adjacent undisturbed floodplain surface. The restored stream and floodplain system provides enhanced terrestrial and aquatic habitat variability, augmenting the Conservancy’s already richly diverse floral and faunal communities. It also creates new opportunities for the Conservancy’s education and outreach programs.
|Davis Branch Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Woodstock, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Daybreak Lake Filtration, Wetlands, Habitat, and Stormwater Management|| |
South Jordan, Utah , United States Daybreak is a 4,000-acre, master-planned community that is expected to be built out by 2020. One-third of the land is being kept as open space, providing residents with many recreational opportunities. The major focal point of the community will be Oquirrh Lake, an 85-acre manmade lake that will be used for fishing and non-motorized boating. To meet stringent water quality goals, including clarity, Biohabitats designed a series of interconnected features such as in-lake wetlands/planting shelves, fish habitat, a recirculating waterfall, water features, and bottom aeration. Stormwater pocket wetlands were constructed on the perimeter of the lake to intercept, treat, and infiltrate stormwater runoff from the surrounding community, thus greatly reducing the impact of runoff on water quality. Biohabitats, along with landscape architects Design Workshop, collaborated on the layout and grading of the lake, water circulation patterns, and design of an operable weir that creates a constant waterfall at the entrance to the community. The weir serves multiple functions as a flood-control device, spectacular water feature and water-quality control point.
|Daybreak Lake Filtration, Wetlands, Habitat, and Stormwater Management||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||South Jordan, Utah, United States||featured-project featured|
|Deep-Sea Ecological Restoration Workshop||In the fall of 2012 Biohabitats Principal Keith Bowers, was invited, along with other international, interdisciplinary experts, to participate in a workshop to examine, frame, and prepare a state of the science paper on the effective application of the science of restoration ecology and the practice of ecological restoration to restore deep-sea marine environments. Oceans form one of the key operating systems of our planet, but they are in trouble. Climate change, overfishing, acidification, habitat destruction, pollution and the introduction of alien species are having a profound effect on ocean ecosystems. Areas of the deep sea floor (oceans beyond the shelf break and greater than 200 meters in depth) have been damaged, degraded, and destroyed by a host of activities including fishing, waste disposal, oil and gas exploration, and telecommunication lines. Further industrialization of the deep sea through bioprospecting and mineral extraction will add to the degradation of the sea floor. Until recently, the notion of restoring the deep-sea environment has not been contemplated. If we choose to continue to expand economic activities to deep-sea ecosystems, ecological restoration must play a prominent role in minimizing and repairing damages to deep sea floor ecosystems. Led by Dr. Cindy Van Dover, Dr. James Aronson, and Dr. Linwood Pendleton, the group’s outcomes were published in Marine Policy, “Ecological restoration in the deep sea: Desiderata.” The paper builds upon the dialogue that occurred during the workshop. It offers perspective on planning and implementing ecological restoration projects to mitigate impacts to deep-sea ecosystems. The group examined the issues, logistics, practices, and costs associated with the restoration of a saltmarsh in San Francisco Bay as a basis for conceptualizing what it would take to restore two degraded deep-sea ecosystems (deep-sea stony corals on the Darwin Mounds off the west coast of Scotland, deep-sea||Deep-Sea Ecological Restoration Workshop||Bioworks,||Séte, Languedoc-Roussillon, France||featured-project featured|
|Delaware Biological Monitoring|| |
New Castle County, Delaware , United States Biohabitats was contracted to perform biological monitoring at 10 locations within the Pike Creek watershed. Pike Creek is a tributary to the White Clay Creek, a wild and scenic river located in New Castle County Delaware. Identified as impaired, Pike Creek is listed on the EPA’s 303D list, and therefore was targeted for watershed improvements. In an effort to reduce instream sedimentation and improve aquatic habitat, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) has performed three stream restoration projects along Pike Creek since it was listed. Biohabitats’ role was to collect and identify macroinvertebrates in an effort to evaluate the health of aquatic organisms within Pike Creek. Biohabitats collected samples from all three restoration sites as well as a reference reach, which was used as the baseline, unimpaired condition. In addition to collection of macroinvertebrates, Biohabitats performed a habitat assessment utilizing DNREC’s habitat assessment form which is derived from the EPA’s Rapid Bioassessment Protocol. After macroinvertebrate identification, Biohabitats analyzed several metrics and computed the IBI score for each reach. A comparison was then made from the restoration reaches to the reference reach and to previous data from pre and post restoration monitoring efforts. DNREC anticipates being able to remove Pike Creek from the list of impaired waters within a few years.
|Delaware Biological Monitoring||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||New Castle County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Delaware City Eco-Tourism and Ecological Restoration Plan|| |
New Castle County, Delaware , United States Main Street Delaware City, Inc., a non-profit revitalization organization formed, wanted to improve and market historic and cultural attractions that bring new residents, visitors and businesses to Delaware City. A main component of the town’s revitalization is the development of an eco-tourism program. Main Street Delaware City, Inc. turned to Biohabitats to assess the status of ecological resources in the project area, establish priorities for the protection of existing ecological infrastructure, and develop recommendations for ecological restoration and management measures in order to support a thriving eco-tourism program. The project included a science-based evaluation of existing natural and cultural resource conditions. The ecological assessment examined at regional landscape ecology using GIS. It involved collecting, reviewing and extracting pertinent natural resource information and augmenting the infomation with site investigations of existing ecological conditions. Biohabitats developed a concept plan highlighting ecological protection needs and restoration opportunities that would be compatible with eco-tourism initiatives. Proposed ecological restoration initiatives included wetland restoration and enhancement, shoreline stabilization, stream restoration and invasive species control. The concept plan supports bird watching, other wildlife observation, canoeing, kayaking, sport fishing, walking, jogging, native vegetation viewing and environmental education.
|Delaware City Eco-Tourism and Ecological Restoration Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||New Castle County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve–Climate Change Adaptation Plan|| |
New Castle County and Kent County, Delaware , United States The Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve (DNERR), one of 28 National Estuarine Research Reserves in the U.S., aims to establish, protect, and manage natural estuarine habitats for research, education, and coastal stewardship. The Reserve consists of freshwater wetlands, ponds, forest lands in Blackbird Creek; and salt marsh and open water habitats on the St. Jones River on Delaware Bay. Climate change will have impacts of varying degrees on the DNERR’s natural resources and infrastructure. Changes in temperature will affect seasonal duration and intensity of precipitation, extreme storm events, and available moisture. Climate change will likely continue to negatively affect the reserve through sea level rise and increasing incidence and intensity of damaging storms. These negative feedbacks will have influence on the DNERR, Delaware Fish and Wildlife lands, and locally contiguous land uses, ecosystems, wildlife, and infrastructure in ways and to a degree that are difficult to predict. Working with DNERR and the Delaware Coastal Management Program, Biohabitats is crafting a Climate Change Adaptation Plan to help plan for and provide guidance related to impending changes to the Reserve lands and the ecosystems in which they are located. This plan is needed to address very real threats that climate change is currently posing and will increasingly present in the future. An initial guidance document to begin addressing climate change resiliency and adaptive management for the Reserve in the context of its ecosystem setting and associated land uses, the plan will help DNERR continue to fulfill its mission of estuarine resource conservation and applied research.
|Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve–Climate Change Adaptation Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||New Castle County and Kent County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Delaware River Riparian Buffer Restoration|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States The Delaware River Riparian Buffer Restoration project was performed as a part of the North Delaware Riverfront Greenway project, a pilot effort kicking off a plan to convert industrial riverfront to an ecological rich and sustainable greenway corridor spanning more than 10 miles along the Delaware Riverfront. Biohabitats was retained by the Pennsylvania Environmental Council to design and implement a riparian forest planting project adjacent to Lardner’s Point in Philadelphia. The project involved aesthetic improvements to the river bank which was once contained by a concrete and steel bulkhead. Over time the bulkhead had deteriorated and fallen into the river, thereby leaving large pieces of concrete and steel along the shoreline. Several of the larger pieces of debris were removed prior to planting the riparian buffer. The buffer planting was performed in a grassy meadow area that is part of a memorial garden site. The landowner entered into an agreement with the Pennsylvania Environmental Council to allow them to plant the buffer as a part of the development of the greenway. In addition to the removal of debris and the planting of a riparian buffer, the project included management of invasive vegetation on the site. Japanese knotweed had taken over a large portion of the property and was threatening plans for native vegetation along the greenway. Invasive species management was, and still is, being performed to control the reestablishment of knotweed at the site.
|Delaware River Riparian Buffer Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Delight Quarry Aquatic Resources Study|| |
Reisterstown, Maryland , United States Delight Quarry, lolocated in western Baltimore County, had been in operation since the late 1800s. Development of the quarry impacted nearby Red Run Stream, which had been relocated and straightened to accommodate quarry operations. With the quarry closing and the need to adhere to the Surface Mining and Reclamation Act of 1977, the client hired Biohabitats to develop an aquatic resource study to determine the baseline conditions of Red Run. As a part of mine reclamation, Red Run is being restored to natural stream channel conditions and the quarry is being allowed to fill with water. To establish a baseline understanding of the biological, chemical and physical parameters of Red Run and the tributaries up-and downstream of the quarry, Biohabitats created an aquatic resource study. Six stream sampling stations were established for collection of fish; benthic macroinvertebrates; physical attributes such as temperature, total dissolved solids and suspended solids; stream channel morphology; and water samples for chemical analysis. Surber sample and fish shocking were used for fish collection and analysis. Red Run was formerly a natural trout stream, but due to recent development within the watershed, the stream has declined and is no longer able to sustain a breeding trout population. Closure of the quarry and subsequent development of the site will provide an opportunity to enhance habitat around the quarry and restore Red Run to a condition that supports trout populations.
|Delight Quarry Aquatic Resources Study||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Reisterstown, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Denver CityCraft|| |
Denver, Colorado , United States Revitalization of the 6,000-acre Sun Valley and Greater West Denver area is a priority for the City of Denver and the Denver Housing Authority. Cut off from Denver’s nearby central business district by a lack of road connectivity, and plagued with low income and high levels of unemployment, the area’s neighborhoods have become both physically and psychologically isolated. Biohabitats helped a partnership group–including CityCraft, the City and County of Denver, the Gates Family Foundation, the Denver Housing Authority, the Denver Foundation, and Enterprise Community Partners–to assess the potential for West Denver to become a model for sustainable and resilient urban regeneration at the district scale. The first phase of this effort involved collecting data and information to assess current conditions at the systems-level scale and understand how those conditions evolved. In the second phase, the information was analyzed, and a framework for strategically integrating solutions for issues was recommended. Recommendations centered around a long-term, collective impact approach to restore the area’s economic, environmental, and social health. Biohabitats led the evaluation of the project area’s natural capital and ecosystem services. This included describing the natural systems and ecological history including current conditions, key ecosystem services, and opportunities for restoration and regeneration of urban ecological systems. In addition to reviewing available documents, conducting site visits, and performing asset mapping, analysis, and synthesis, the Biohabitats team was asked to identify previously undetected economic/environmental/social links related to the revitalization and to develop integration initiatives to address these issues. Core assets identified included parks and open space, gulches, the South Platte River, trails and corridors, schools, and other community centers. Integration opportunities were developed that included cross-sector ideas for improving green infrastructure, ecosystem health, education, art, job creation, healthy lifestyles, food supply, and safety. Informed by Biohabitats findings, the study highlighted the need
|Denver CityCraft||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Denver, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Denver Ecological Services On-Call|| |
Denver, Colorado , United States The City of Denver Parks and Recreation Department manages designated natural areas and priority landscapes representing over half of the acreage within the City Parks network. Some of the parcels have significant but compromised ecological potential, but the possibilities for their restoration had never been systematically examined. As part of an on-call contract to provide the City with ecological restoration services, Biohabitats assessed its holdings and developed a prioritization scheme for future restoration projects. Biohabitats assessed 21 priority properties, interviewed the district staff, met with partner organizations and departments, updated the database describing the sites’ vegetation, and worked with the City to synthesize this information into specific recommendations for each site. An important aspect of the project was identifying potential projects in proximity to schools to enhance educational opportunities. Biohabitats also conducted assessments of four gulches that traverse multiple jurisdications as they flow through Denver natural areas. The sites had impairments ranging from erosion and incision because of channel alteration, to encroachment by urban development, to invasive species. The restoration concepts for these sites will be used to prioritize the maintenance and restoration activities for the Program’s upcoming planning period. Biohabitats’ living systems approach to the project resulted in collaboration with other City partners. The City and Urban Drainage and Flood Control District, which shares maintenance responsibilities with the Natural Areas Program, is initiating a broader collaboration to improve its ecological approach to managing City lands, and Biohabitats is assisting with vegetation management planning. Biohabitats is also providing assistance to the City and their partner, Groundwork Denver, to assess the feasibility of a pilot stormwater best management practice project to reduce E coli in Bear Creek.
|Denver Ecological Services On-Call||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Denver, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Descanso Gardens Entry and Operations Buildings Stormwater Management|| |
La Cañada Flintridge, California , United States Descanso Gardens is an internationally renowned botanical and demonstration garden located just 20 minutes from downtown Los Angeles. With a mission to “cultivate understanding of the natural world and people’s place in it through inspiration, education and example” the site offers visitors ample opportunities to explore its 160 acres of gardens, woodlands and chaparral. Yet the Gardens also experienced insufficient drainage and flooding in its parking lot, extensive impervious cover, noncompliance of portions of the parking area with ADA regulations, and inadequate operations and maintenance facilities. When an electrical fire damaged the Garden’s operations building and maintenance area, the Gardens staff recognized an opportunity to implement a portion of a master plan prepared by the Portico Group and Biohabitats in 2009. Biohabitats collaborated with the Portico Group design team and Gardens staff in a design charette to develop concepts for a three-acre site to house operations and maintenance facilities, and for the renovation of a four-acre parking lot. The resulting conceptual stormwater management plan called for permeable pavement in parking stalls, bioswales intercepting stormwater along each parking row, and a series of bioretention areas along a central ‘Arroyo’ corridor and at strategic low points. The plan not only exceeds the County’s requirement for stormwater filtration and infiltration; it maximizes groundwater recharge and minimizes overflow into an adjacent regional flood control channel. Additional features of the concept include native, drought tolerant, and specimen plantings; a village of improved operations and maintenance buildings; and solar energy canopies in the parking lot.
|Descanso Gardens Entry and Operations Buildings Stormwater Management||Regenerative Design,||La Cañada Flintridge, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Descanso Gardens Lake & Stream Promenade Concept Development|| |
La Cañada Flintridge, California , United States Located in La Cañada Flintridge, a city only 20 miles from downtown Los Angeles but bordered by the San Gabriel Mountains, Angeles National Forest, and the San Rafael Hills, the 160-acre Descanso Gardens provides refuge for people and wildlife alike. Situated at the base of several canyons, the 100-year-old site includes two water features–a small recirculating stream and a two-acre lake–fed partially by stormwater from the adjacent hillsides and from a spring located high up in the mountains. The Gardens wanted to improve the water quality, habitat value, and aesthetics of the lake while also addressing its aging liner and ensuring wise water use. Partnering with The Portico Group, Biohabitats crafted a concept to help the Gardens achieve these goals while also enhancing the site’s impact on both its visitors and regional ecology. The team began by assessing the site’s water infrastructure, with particular consideration to the Gardens’ context within its local watershed. Upon discovering that upstream from the site, natural springs cascade through a thriving riparian zone, the team approached the project with the intent to minimize draw from the springs. The team then created a concept to link the hillside arroyos, lake, and winding waterway in an interconnected system through which water is continually filtered and recycled with the help of upgraded recirculation pumps and ecological features like living shorelines, biofiltration wetlands, and check dams to better manage incoming sediment. These features not only remove sediment and nutrients from the water, but add habitat, diversity, beauty, and new visitor experiences to the Garden’s landscape. By reducing the need to draw water from the canyon springs, the concept helps the Gardens to protect upstream ecology, reduce its water footprint, and enhance its resilience to the uncertainty posed by climate change and earthquakes.
|Descanso Gardens Lake & Stream Promenade Concept Development||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||La Cañada Flintridge, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Descanso Gardens Stormwater Masterplan & Water Balance|| |
La Cañada Flintridge, California , United States Descanso Gardens is a well known botanical and demonstration garden located in La Cañada Flintridge, north of Los Angeles. The site was developed initially by E. Manchester Boddy, the owner of the Los Angeles Daily News. Boddy cleared the land of oak and built a large mansion on the site. The mansion overlooks 25 acres of live oak forest and a camellia-lined driveway. Boddy ran a camellia nursery on the property until 1953, when he ceded the site to Los Angeles County. The natural “bowl” in the San Rafael hills has been further developed by Los Angeles County to include a world-class rosarium, Japanese tea house, lilac garden, bird sanctuary, and xeriscape. The garden regularly offers a range of family driven entertainment, including concerts, chamber music, and art events. In conjunction with the Portico Group of Seattle, Washington, Biohabitats was retained by Descanso Gardens to generate a stormwater masterplan. Through a series of charrettes and work cycles Biohabitats developed a master drainage plan that calculated storm flows in major drainage channels and also provided strategies for the management of storm water to improve infiltration and limit erosion. Biohabitats assisted in the improvement of the water bodies onsite. Pond and riparian areas were improved based on examination and redesign of the existing edge conditions. In addition to stormwater design, Biohabitats prepared a water balance that examined both sources and uses of the water. The water balance is a powerful planning tool that steers future development decisions on the property.
|Descanso Gardens Stormwater Masterplan & Water Balance||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||La Cañada Flintridge, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Desert Living Center On-Site Wastewater Treatment & Reuse System|| |
Las Vegas, Nevada , United States The Desert Living Center (DLC) is a new desert living demonstration complex on a 185 acre site near downtown Las Vegas. In an effort to obtain a LEED Platinum Certification from the U.S. Green Builders Council, energy and water were important design considerations. Visitors to the DLC learn ways to protect the valuable resources of the desert environment and the global community, while enhancing their quality of life. Biohabitats designed an on-site wastewater treatment and reuse system incorporating passive treatment technologies that are part of the landscape. Wastewater from an expected 600,000 visitors per year is treated on-site and then reused in subsurface drip irrigation systems and water closets. The design is intended to reduce demand for potable water and create additional water for landscaping and building uses. The Center helps set a precedent in the region for sustainability.
|Desert Living Center On-Site Wastewater Treatment & Reuse System||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||featured-project featured|
|Determination of Federal Interest Fact Sheets|| |
Various locations, Ohio , United States Biohabitats recently helped the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s (USACE) Buffalo District in an effort to determine if a Federal Interest exists in pursuing six potential ecological restoration projects within the Lake Erie watershed and the USACE’s jurisdiction. The USACE’s primary goals for these projects are to enhance fish and wildlife resources and restore and protect aquatic ecosystems that improve the environmental quality and are in the public interest. Biohabitats developed Determination of Federal Interest (DFI) fact sheets for each site, performing data collection and review, field reconnaissance/plan formulation, and evaluation of alternatives including reconnaissance level cost estimates and ecosystem benefit scenarios for each alternative. The six project sites included Mentor Marsh (Lake County, Ohio), Dugway Creek (Cuyahoga County, Ohio), and Buffalo Outer Harbor, Cornelius Creek, LaSalle Park, and Scajaquada Creek (Erie Co., New York). The DFI fact sheets will help the USACE prioritize restoration options and guide the implementation of initiatives that will result in improved water quality and habitat conditions for the plant, animal and human communities in those watersheds.
|Determination of Federal Interest Fact Sheets||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Various locations, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Development of a Coordinated Implementation Strategy and Assessment for ESD/LID Implementation|| |
Montgomery County, Maryland , United States Under an Environmental Restoration Services contract with Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), Biohabitats is providing services for a two-part assignment related to meeting the requirements of the County’s third-round National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit. The first part focuses on the development of a coordinated watershed implementation strategy. Biohabitats developed detailed implementation plans for seven of the county’s watershed groupings using desktop analysis, detailed pollutant loading modeling (including bacteria) and a process of exploring the full restoration potential of each watershed area. Then a prioritization effort was developed that balanced permit requirements, stakeholder input, and cost/benefit output tied to projected funding levels. The final output yielded a countywide strategy that meets: 1) short term permit requirements such as treating specified amounts of untreated impervious surface; 2) Chesapeake Bay TMDL targets for nutrient and sediment load reduction; and 3) longer term local watershed TMDLs, including a bacteria TMDL for Rock Creek. As part of their MS4 permit, Montgomery County was responsible for reducing the bacterial load from wildlife and domestic pets in the watershed. The second part of the project involved developing recommendations to implement Environmental Site Design/Low impact Design (ESD/LID) techniques to the Maximum Extent Practicable (MEP) to meet the permit requirements. Biohabitats assessed the County’s existing laws and regulations concerning stormwater management and water resources protection; identified any potential barriers, gaps, and deficiencies; and provided recommendations to promote the use of ESD/LID techniques to the MEP.
|Development of a Coordinated Implementation Strategy and Assessment for ESD/LID Implementation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Dickens Farm Park Master Plan|| |
Longmont, Colorado , United States The adoption of the St. Vrain Greenway Master Plan in 2004 set the stage for the creation of a recreational greenway along the St. Vrain Creek corridor that would connect the City of Longmont and the town of Lyons, Colorado. Today, eight miles of the envisioned greenway have been completed, including a section that passes through the heart of downtown Longmont. An integral component of this section is a 58-acre site now known as Dickens Farm Park. Originally home to a gravel mining operation, the site included three gravel pits that had become degraded ponds, and an eroding riverfront offering little in terms of aquatic and terrestrial habitat, recreation, or beauty. Bordered by Main Street on its western edge, Dickens Farm Park presented tremendous potential for both urban renewal and ecological enhancement. As a key member of the master planning team focused on site ecology, Biohabitats provided detailed assessments of the riparian vegetation and physical condition of the creek, performed a jurisdictional wetland delineation and prepared the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 404 permit application. Biohabitats then developed concepts for stream and wetland restoration. Biohabitats also worked closely with Colorado Parks & Wildlife fish biologists to develop opportunities to protect, restore, and regenerate native fish habitat for the state-listed Iowa darter (Etheostoma exile), stonecat (Noturus flavus) and common shiner (Luxilus cornutus). Biohabitats re-assessed the site after it experienced record floods in 2013, and made design recommendations that adjusted the plan to the new creek alignment. In addition to the ecological enhancements, the master plan calls for hiking trails, picnic pavilions, playgrounds, and an in-channel water park for paddlers and tubers. When complete, the park’s proposed recreation features and restored natural habitat are expected to attract two million visitors annually.
|Dickens Farm Park Master Plan||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Longmont, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Dicks Creek/Monroe Ditch Ecological Restoration Plan|| |
Middletown, Ohio , United States ENVIRON called on Biohabitats to develop a conceptual restoration plan for two streams in southwest Ohio. Both streams, which had been channelized, are part of a remediation project to remove historical contamination from a nearby steel mill. Biohabitats performed the data collection, field reconnaissance, and discharge and sediment assessments to guide the conceptual design development. As part of the field reconnaissance, Biohabitats surveyed stream morphology and assessed existing vegetative communities. Applying a depth and breadth of ecological restoration expertise unique to Biohabitats, the team completed a conceptual design that works with the remediation activities and meets the ecological objectives to restore warm water habitat. Biohabitats developed final stream restoration plans based on the conceptual design.
|Dicks Creek/Monroe Ditch Ecological Restoration Plan||Ohio River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Middletown, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Dike 14 Feasibility Study for Public Access|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States Projecting into Lake Erie, East of downtown Cleveland is an amazing eighty-eight acre landscape. Contained behind hundreds of linear feet of sheet piling and covered with over twenty-five feet of deep dredge spoils is an important natural habitat refuge. The site is particularly important for migratory birds, as it is located at a critical resting and feeding point at the convergence of three major flyways. Biohabitats developed a master plan by first addressing issues for protecting and regenerating the site’s ecological processes through selective invasive species removal, woodland planting enhancements, wetlands creation, and meadow management. Biohabitats gave special attention to developing the site’s habitat diversity for not only birds but also mammals, amphibians, and insects. Biohabitats then incorporated a series of public access paths and education opportunities. All efforts were directed toward fulfilling Cleveland’s Lakefront Development Plan. The master plan included a bold proposal for reconstructing a portion of currently culverted and buried Doan Brook, an act which returns an historical waterway to the public and provides additional habitat opportunities.
|Dike 14 Feasibility Study for Public Access||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Dorado Beach Resort Sustainable Infrastructure|| |
San Juan, Puerto Rico , United States The redevelopment of the Dorado Beach Resort, a high-end community of over 300 homes and several hotel buildings slated to be renovated or razed, presented an opportunity to improve the property’s functionality, reduce operating costs, and build upon the legacy of the resort’s original builder, conservationist Laurence S. Rockefeller. As a member of the design team, Biohabitats examined the potential to enhance the project by implementing a wide range of environmental strategies. These strategies would not only create a more environmentally sensitive travel destination, but transform the way visitors think about sustainable infrastructure. Biohabitats assessed opportunities for new and ugraded infrastructure plans, including two new hotels and a renovated environmental education center. Biohabitats identified opportunities to improve system functionality, reduce operational and maintenance costs, and provide watershed protection. Concepts were detailed in an Environmental Opportunities Memorandum, which also outlined key principles and tools needed to integrate the concepts into the redevelopment. Key principles included energy efficient design, site drainage improvements, and sustainable wastewater and stormwater management. Given that water was one of the most valuable long-term resources available to the site, Biohabitats recommended a Water Balance that would consider: beneficial reuse and stormwater harvesting; season-specific and landscape-specific water use; precision; integrated green design; integrated phasing; and flexibility. Biohabitats also provided recommendations for alternative wastewater management and irrigation practices, drainage infrastructure plans and landscape management practices. Specific recommendations included implementation of rain harvesting systems, rain gardens, naturalized swales, and vegetated strips.
|Dorado Beach Resort Sustainable Infrastructure||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Dorsey Hall Village Stream Restoration and Stormwater Outfall Retrofit|| |
Howard County, Maryland , United States Founded in 1980, Dorsey’s Search is one of ten villages comprising the planned community of Columbia, Maryland. The village quickly grew to a population of 7,500, and with that growth came significant development, including the Dorsey Hall Village Center, a community and retail hub. Stormwater from the Village Center and surrounding development had caused severe erosion in a tributary to Red Hill Branch which flows into the Little Patuxent River. Working with the Howard County Department of Public Works’ Stormwater Management Division, Biohabitats created a regenerative restoration design to stabilize the degrading stream and reconnect the stream to its floodplain. Allowing small storm flows to access the floodplain provides water quality treatment of stormwater from the Village Center. The restoration design involves the installation of cobble riffle structures in the channel which raise the stream bed back up to pre-disturbance levels. The raised riffles allow storm flows to spill onto the forested floodplain and create deeper pools in the channel which will be replete with large woody debris for native fish habitat. The design also included water quality retrofit of four stormdrain outfalls which collect runoff from the nearby townhouse community. Despite the short distance and steep grade of the land between the outfalls and the forested floodplain, Biohabitats was able to craft a design to laterally distribute stormwater into terraced, wetland cells which detain and infiltrate the first flush of runoff from parking areas, streets, sidewalks, and roofs. In addition to improving water quality and stability, the restoration also replaces non-native trees and shrubs with native vegetation that will improve habitat in a densely populated suburban setting. The newly created wetland cells are already being used as habitat by toad tadpoles (Anaxyrus sp.), as you can see in this video:
|Dorsey Hall Village Stream Restoration and Stormwater Outfall Retrofit||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Howard County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Downtown Columbia Planning, Restoration, and Design|| |
Columbia, Maryland , United States The recent completion of a new master plan for Downtown Columbia marked the beginning of an historic revitalization effort. At the heart of the plan is the vision to create a community that fosters the growth of its people, respects the land, and promotes economic prosperity while celebrating the diversity of life. Biohabitats has worked closely with The Howard Hughes Corporation and other consulting team members to ensure integration of ecological restoration and regenerative design into the community as it is redeveloped. Early in the master planning process, Biohabitats’ team of landscape architects, scientists, water resource engineers and GIS specialists produced a body of ecological information to inform and guide design and planning. Over a nine-month period, Biohabitats spearheaded the engagement of state and county agencies, community stakeholders, and the general public on watershed, woodland and sustainability issues related to redevelopment activities. Biohabitats worked with various stakeholders to reach consensus on balancing redevelopment with environmental enhancement initiatives. Through rigorous field investigations, community participation and design team collaboration, Biohabitats developed a Watershed Restoration and Management Plan for two sub-watersheds within Columbia, an Environmental Enhancement Plan for Columbia Town Center, and Ecological Sustainability Guidelines. When applied in an integrated and thoughtful manner, the sustainability guidelines will lead to regenerative conditions that create a more healthy and vibrant Downtown Columbia. As the project moves into the design stages, Biohabitats continues to play a critical role in overseeing environmental restoration, stormwater management, and overall integration of sustainability elements into the project. The first new building in Downtown Columbia’s Warfield Neighborhood will be opening in 2015 and includes stormwater green infrastructure practices designed by Biohabitats. Biohabitats has designed and overseen almost twenty acres of forest restoration, including two full seasons of invasive species management. In September of 2014, we completed a design-build stream restoration
|Downtown Columbia Planning, Restoration, and Design||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Columbia, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Downtown Columbia Sustainability Program|| |
Columbia, Maryland , United States Columbia, Maryland, located at the center of the Baltimore-Washington, DC corridor and opened in 1967, was one of the first planned communities in the U.S. The completion of a new Master Plan for Downtown Columbia marked the beginning of an historic revitalization effort for the community. At the heart of the master plan is the vision to create a community that fosters the growth of its people, respects the land, and promotes economic prosperity while celebrating the diversity of life. Working toward the realization of this vision, Biohabitats developed a Sustainability Program that established principles, goals and targets that touch upon all aspects of the community’s design and operation. The Sustainability Program is comprised of three main parts: The Sustainability Framework, an Implementation Plan, and an Institutional Framework. The Sustainability Framework provided the overarching components of the Sustainability Program and served as a quick reference for tracking performance with regard to sustainability within Downtown. Downtown Columbia’s Sustainability Program has been integrated into the design guidelines for the overall plan as well as the Warfield neighborhood, the first of five neighborhoods in the Master Plan. A sustainable community is not an endpoint; rather it is a continuous process of adapting and improving, so that each generation can live progressively higher quality lives. For Columbia and Howard County, the Downtown Columbia project addresses many needed improvements while planning for an enriching future.
|Downtown Columbia Sustainability Program||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Columbia, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Downtown Columbia Warfield Neighborhood|| |
Columbia, Maryland , United States Downtown Columbia is a mixed use redevelopment plan in the heart of Columbia. The plan converted acres of surface parking lots built prior to stormwater management into five neighborhoods emphasizing multimodal transit integrated with green infrastructure. Biohabitats designed the stormwater green infrastructure using environmental site design practices. Portions of the runoff from the first planned building rooftop will be filtered and harvested using subsurface cisterns, while the majority of the rooftop runoff will be treated in micro-bioretention practices designed into the buildings internal courtyard and external promenade. Meanwhile, tree planters will be installed along the streets and sidewalks to accept roadway runoff. The implementation of this stormwater green infrastructure plan will represent one of the first case studies whereby environmental site design volumes will be achieved onsite for such dense redevelopment. Biohabitats was also the sustainability consultant for the project and ensured that design guidelines for the Warfield Neighborhood integrated sustainability goals such as reducing heat island effect, enhancing native wildlife habitat and encouraging walkability and bikability.
|Downtown Columbia Warfield Neighborhood||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Columbia, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Downtown Columbia Watershed Planning|| |
Columbia, Maryland , United States Biohabitats developed restoration strategies for the watersheds of the two streams that flow through the center of Columbia, one of the nation’s first planned communities. Biohabitats conducted extensive GIS analysis, stream and upland field assessments, and pollutant load modeling for two watersheds. A retrofit reconnaissance investigation identified opportunities for stormwater retrofit practices in the upland areas of the watersheds. Of the 60 sites visited, Biohabitats identified 49 opportunities to implement stormwater retrofits, including bioretention, bioswales, modification of existing stormwater basins, rain gardens and rain barrels, rainwater cisterns, sand filters, permeable pavement, wooded wetlands, and regenerative stormwater conveyance. For each retrofit opportunity, Biohabitats estimated the potential annual pollutant load reduction and planning-level design and construction costs. A riparian corridor assessment was conducted to identify outfall locations, severely eroded stream banks, utility crossings, impacted riparian buffers, trash dumping, stream crossings, and channel modifications along two miles of stream corridors. Biohabitats developed riparian corridor restoration opportunities along ten impacted stream reaches. These opportunities included floodplain reconnection, riparian buffer enhancement, stream restoration, bank stabilization, and regenerative stormwater conveyance. Biohabitats also developed a watershed restoration implementation strategy for each watershed which optimizes the pollutant removal capabilities of stormwater retrofits and, where feasible, associates the stormwater retrofits with riparian corridor restoration and integrated vegetation management opportunities.
|Downtown Columbia Watershed Planning||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Columbia, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Duke Farms On-Site Wastewater Management System|| |
Hillsborough, New Jersey , United States Duke Farms, a 2,742-acre property developed by tobacco and hydropower magnate James Buchanan Duke, includes nine lakes, 96 buildings, 18 miles of trails, and numerous fountains and sculptures. In the 1960s and 1970s, J.B. Duke’s daughter, Doris Duke, purchased small, 19th century farms along the western boundary of the property, which represented the rapidly vanishing agricultural landscape that once characterized central New Jersey. Today, with almost 1,000 acres open to public exploration, Duke Farms is a cultural landscape maintained by the Duke Farms Foundation. As Duke Farms planned to expand to provide environmental programming and increased access for over 250,000 annual visitors, it sought to provide healthy, sustainable habitat for native flora and fauna that would fully integrate with local, state, and regional environmental strategies. This expansion necessitated a wastewater management system upgrade. Biohabitats was responsible for the overhaul and upgrade of the existing wastewater system, which included septic systems and sand mounds. The redesign includes a small diameter wastewater collection system for the farm’s cottages and barn, and an onsite wastewater treatment system. The wastewater treatment system incorporates a primary treatment tank (interceptor tank) at each building, constructed wetlands, trickling filters, a recirculating sand filter, and a subsurface drip land application system. The four-step, low energy, low maintenance system has a treatment capacity of 12,000 gallons per day. Water quality meets or exceeds all State of New Jersey water quality standards for the land application. The Duke Farms project is an exciting collaboration between Biohabitats and the Duke Farms Foundation. Biohabitats is proud to assist in the stewardship of this important cultural asset.
|Duke Farms On-Site Wastewater Management System||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Hillsborough, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Duke University Central Campus Master Plan and Environmental Sustainability Metrics|| |
Durham, North Carolina , United States Duke University is engaged in a long-range planning process to develop its 200-acre Central Campus located between the East and West campuses. The development is expected to occur in phases over a 20 to 50-year period. The goal is to create an “academic village” that attracts and serves members of the Duke community throughout the day and evening. The new Central Campus will also serve to connect the other campuses, both physically and programmatically. Working with the Master Planning and Phase 1 Schematic Design team, Biohabitats provided environmental sustainability planning and design. Specifically, Biohabitats developed stormwater management strategies that meet and exceed state water quality regulations and sustainable design metrics. These metrics encompassed the categories: Location Efficiency, Ecological Integrity, Compact, Complete and Connected Campus, Resource Efficiency, User Health and Institutional Commitment. Each individual metric included a goal, specific targets, and indicators with which campus administrators and all effected stakeholders can see how the goal and targets are met. The goals and targets of each metric will ensure that the Central Campus landscape uses resources efficiently and enhance and preserve the ecological function of the woodlands and hollows surrounding the Central Campus development site. Meeting each metric’s detailed goal adheres to Duke University’s Environmental Policy and furthers the campus’ commitment to sustainability and responsible environmental stewardship.
|Duke University Central Campus Master Plan and Environmental Sustainability Metrics||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Durham, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Dundalk Marine Terminal Algal Turf Scrubber®|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States Operated by the Maryland Port Administration (MPA), the 13-berth, 570-acre Dundalk Marine Terminal is the largest general cargo facility at the Port of Baltimore. In 2014, as part of an effort to reduce the impact of stormwater runoff from Baltimore’s public marine terminals, the MPA installed an Algal Turf Scrubber®, a technology developed by Dr. Walter Adey of the Smithsonian Institution, at the Dundalk Marine Terminal. The Algal Turf Scrubber® harnesses the power of algae to improve water quality. The ATS was awarded first place in the Innovative BMP category for the Best Urban BMP on the Bay Award in 2014. The 300 foot-long turf scrubber works by pumping water from Baltimore’s Patapsco River into a shallow, screened floway. The water flows by gravity down the floway, where the controlled natural growth of attached filamentous algae occurs through nutrient and carbon uptake and the use of the sun as an energy source. The algae not only removes nitrogen and phosphorous from the water, but its photosynthetic activity releases dissolved oxygen, which further improves the quality of the water before it re-enters the river. After helping to install the scrubber, Biohabitats collaborated with researchers from the University of Maryland Department of Environmental Science and Technology (ENST) to monitor its effectiveness. Twelve months of monitoring data show that the technology is highly effective at reducing nitrogen, phosphorous and sediment loads. Based on the monitoring results, the MPA plans to upscale the technology from 200 square-meters to up to 0.5-1.0 acre. In addition to its effectiveness at reducing nutrient and sediment Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs), the scrubber proved a useful tool for research and education. University of Maryland ENST senior capstone students successfully tested samples of the harvested algae in an anaerobic digester to determine its ability to make methane
|Dundalk Marine Terminal Algal Turf Scrubber®||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|East Branch of Honeygo Run Stream Restoration|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States The East Branch of Honeygo Run had become severely degraded by excessive water flow. To stabilize the channel, reduce sediment loads and improve aquatic habitat, Biohabitats was contracted by Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability (DEPS). Biohabitats developed a stream restoration design that applied the princliples of fluvial geomorphology, hydrology and hydraulics, and soil bioengineering. The approach involved redesigning the channel using natural channel design while preserving the many existing mature trees. Biohabitats began by conducting an assessment that included a Rosgen Stream Classification and analyses of the hydrology, sediment transtport, water quality and ecology of the degraded stream. The restoration plan was then crafted in light of this assessment, and it incorporated natural channel design and soil bioengineering, or letting living plants stabilize the streambanks rather than soley hard-armoring techniques. To help DEPS implement the design, Biohabitats provided a cost/benefit analysis, prepared and tracked all of the regulatory permits neessary for the project, and met with landowners and other stakeholders to seek feedback. Biohabitats prepared all of the design and construction drawings with complete specifications and an engineers’ cost estimate for the project, and once construction was underway, Biohabitats supervised the work and conducted post-construction monitoring. Today, the East Branch of Honeygo Run is a stable and self sustaining stream complex, functioning as it was designed.
|East Branch of Honeygo Run Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ecological Master Planning Services for the Pearlstone Center|| |
Reisterstown, Maryland , United States The Pearlstone Conference and Retreat Center is a Jewish retreat and sustainable farm in Baltimore County, Maryland that fully integrates environmental stewardship into its operations and educational programming. When management of the entire property (which includes events pavilions, a day camp with camp sites, swimming pools, athletics fields, forest conservation easements, a pond, and wetlands) was delegated to the Pearlstone Center by the land owners, the Center’s staff initiated a campus master planning process. For help in creating a long-term vision for the property that reflects Jewish values, which include environmental stewardship, they turned to Biohabitats. Biohabitats assessed the campus’ ecological resources and identified opportunities for sustainable and regenerative design, as well as approaches to more sustainable management of resources. An important goal of the master plan is to ensure that future development and maintenance efforts align with the Center’s core values: connectedness, living Judaism, environmental stewardship, and loving warmth. Innovative approaches to ecological resource management, organic farming, and alternative management techniques using grazing animals were identified as priorities. At a planning charrette hosted by the Pearlstone Center Biohabitats provided input on natural resource opportunities including restoration and management of native meadow, wetlands, and forest areas, as well as feedback on integrated stormwater management and sustainable techniques to manage water and nonnative species. The master plan provides a comprehensive and forward-thinking vision of a landscape that connects visitor experience with the natural world, spirituality, mindfulness, and resilience, while prioritizing conservation of natural resources.
|Ecological Master Planning Services for the Pearlstone Center||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Reisterstown, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Eden Hall Campus Master Plan, Water Balance, and Wastewater Treatment|| |
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania , United States When Chatham University was gifted the 388-acre Eden Hall Farm in 2008, they set out to create a model campus with district-scale sustainability as a core focus. Home to the new School of Sustainability and the Environment, the new campus includes an environmental learning lab, initiatives in sustainability and environmental studies, food studies, landscape architecture, and women’s studies. Biohabitats worked with the team of BNIM, Andropogon Associates, Civil and Engineering Consultants (CEC), and Interface to create the campus master plan. Biohabitats created an extensive water balance for the campus and applied an innovative water infrastructure approach that examined the integration of natural wastewater treatment and rainwater harvesting. Considerations such as nutrient cycling, agricultural linkages, and energy intensity of treatment options were included. The project has now progressed to the first phases of development, which includes an aquaponics field lab, library/café, dining commons, and residence lodge. Working with Mithun (architect/landscape architect) and CEC, Biohabitats engineered and permitted the advanced natural wastewater treatment systems, which are integrated closely with the learning landscape of the new campus. The high-quality reclaimed effluent is reused to supply 100% of the project’s toilet flushing demand. Any excess unused effluent is slowly and safely dispersed back into the soils through subsurface irrigation systems. The project earned the 2015 Award of Excellence in Engineering and Science from the Pittsburgh chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
|Eden Hall Campus Master Plan, Water Balance, and Wastewater Treatment||Ohio River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Edgewood Open Space and Equestrian Arena|| |
Edgewood, New Mexico , United States Edgewood Open Space is a new equestrian park for the community of Edgewood, New Mexico. Working with Surroundings Studio, Biohabitats provided civil engineering, including the design of innovative stormwater management features and potable water infrastructure for the park. Situated on a wildland hillside with sparse native vegetation and potentially erodible soil, the stormwater features, based on permaculture techniques appropriate for the local landscape and climate, retain runoff and minimize erosion from the hillside above as well as from the new parking areas and horse arena structure. The stormwater system uses tree berms, ‘media luna’ rock structures, rock check dams, a series of swales, biofiltration basins, cobble flow dissipaters, and a sand seepage berm to slow, spread, and infiltrate water from storm events. Using these dispersed landscape features to provide stormwater management avoided the use of a large stormwater pond on the sensitive site, even for the 100-year event. All of these structures functioned well and remained stable during major, high intensity storm events in the first rainy season following construction. The team minimized removal of existing native vegetation and used native plant species in the biofiltration areas and other landscape to reduce the impact on the native landscape and maintain the site’s rural, high desert character.
|Edgewood Open Space and Equestrian Arena||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Edgewood, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Emory University Water Reclamation Facility|| |
Atlanta, Georgia , United States When it comes to the sustainable use of water, Emory University in Atlanta, GA is at the forefront. It’s WaterHub®, designed by Sustainable Water, is an ecological treatment facility designed to collect and treat between 200,000 and 400,000 gallons per day of campus wastewater for non-potable reuse on campus. Once treated, reclaimed water is reused as process make-up at three central chiller plants and the campus steam plant, for irrigation of campus landscaping, and for toilet flushing at select dormitories–all compliant with stringent Georgia regulations. The hydroponic treatment system relies on complex adaptive ecosystems to break down nutrients and pollutants in water. The robust ecological treatment process produces a very high quality effluent that meets all federal, state and local regulations wile consuming very little energy. Flexible site integration, a compact footprint and a green aesthetic also complement Emory’s campus and sustainability goals. Even the facility housing the system enhances the university’s water management, as it displaces previously existing impervious surface and harvests rainwater on-site for reuse. Biohabitats coordinated and supervised commissioning of the treatment and reuse facility, ensuring that the system functioned as designed. The Biohabitats team managed the assembly of all operations and manuals and operator training. Biohabitats also managed the procurement and installation of all plants for the system. The first water reclamation system of its kind, WaterHub® not only serves as a model for water conservation, it also provides the university with unique opportunities for research and scholarship
|Emory University Water Reclamation Facility||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Atlanta, Georgia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Environmental/Ecological On-Call Services|| |
Centennial, Colorado , United States Southern Denver’s Southeast Metro Stormwater Authority (SEMSWA) is actively assisting these communities to better understand operations and practices associated with stormwater projects. As part of an on-call contract to provide SESMSWA with ecological services, Biohabitats developed a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for U.S. Clean Water Act 404 permitting for its maintenance projects. The project provided guidelines determining permit needs, protocols and contacts for particular projects. It also included consideration of Endangered Species Act requirements related to 404 permitting. Biohabitats prepared a related fact sheet for reference and training. Biohabitats also developed an SOP for utilizing volunteers to re-vegetate and assess vegetation at SEMSWA construction sites along riparian and wetland areas. This SOP covered items such as the type of projects appropriate for volunteer use and the different roles and responsibilities necessary for effective volunteer projects. Biohabitats worked closely with the Cherry Creek Stewardship Partners, who served as the example project partner with SEMSWA, to coordinate volunteer groups and maintenance activities. Biohabitats developed a brief and simple assessment method for volunteers to use in following up revegetation efforts and monitoring post-construction health of wetland and riparian areas.
|Environmental/Ecological On-Call Services||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Centennial, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Episcopal High School Green Infrastructure Valuation Modeling|| |
Alexandria, Virginia , United States Recognizing that a campus-owned woodland had potential value as green infrastructure, the Episcopal High School, a private educational facility located in Alexandria, Virginia, contracted with Biohabitats to model the functional benefits supplied by this vegetation community. In addition to mapping the botanical composition of the forest, Biohabitats utilized the U.S. Forest Service Urban Forestry Effects Model (UFORE) to quantify the ecosystem services provided by the tree canopy. As atmospheric carbon is a primary greenhouse gas contributing to global climate change, Episcopal High School wanted to understand the positive contribution that preserving this woodland would make towards reducing levels of this pollutant. Applying the carbon module of UFORE, Biohabitats determined both the total carbon currently stored in tree biomass and the projected amount of carbon sequestered annually. In addition to carbon, the green infrastructure analysis evaluated the impact that the forest canopy had on the interception of several other pollutants including ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, and fine particulate matter. An economic analysis was performed on the data results in order to estimate the dollar value of these benefits. The results of this study were directly incorporated into the development of a master plan for the campus forest and have been instrumental in both informing and directing campus management decisions.
|Episcopal High School Green Infrastructure Valuation Modeling||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Alexandria, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Episcopal High School Sustainable Campus Master Plan|| |
Baton Rouge, Louisiana , United States The Episcopal High School, a private school located on a 48-acre campus in Baton Rouge, wanted to create a comprehensive Master Plan that incorporated a strong sustainability focus. As a member of a consultant team led by NK Architects, Biohabitats was responsible for integrating ecological sustainablility and sustainable design elements into the Plan. Built upon the alluvial soils and high water table of the Atchafalaya Basin, Episcopal High School had historically experienced stormwater flooding problems during rain events, a reduction in the campus tree cover, and an institutional disconnect from the local and regional ecosystem. Understanding how the master plan might address these challenges was Biohabitat’s objective. Biohabitats performed field inspections of the campus, identified ecological opportunities and liabilities, and refined the definition and scope of sustainability for the project. In collaboration with NK Architects, Biohabitats addressed the placement of future infrastructure in such a manner as to minimize the ecological footprint associated with development. We included innovative sustainable design elements such as stormwater retrofitting with cisterns, bioretention basins and permeable pavers, expansion of the tree canopy to enhance micro-climatic cooling and evapotranspiration, integration of the naturalized woodland into the campus infrastructure, and reconnection of the school community with the Jones Creek and Atchafalaya watersheds. Biohabitats participated in several school vision sessions designed to refine alternate development scenarios and conducted a final presentation in conjunction with NK Architects. The Episcopal High School is currently in the process of implementing the new Master Plan concepts.
|Episcopal High School Sustainable Campus Master Plan||Conservation Planning,||Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Euclid Creek Habitat Restoration Concept Plan Development|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States The Euclid Creek Watershed, located on the eastern side of Cleveland, drains to Lake Erie. Decades of development in the upper watershed have resulted in increased flows, which have caused Euclid Creek and many of its tributaries to become widened and incised. Poor riparian management has further contributed to the degradation of habitat. In an effort to improve water quality and habitat in the watershed, Biohabitats worked with the Cuyahoga Soil & Water Conservation District to develop conceptual plans for two reaches on Euclid Creek and one reach of a tributary to Euclid Creek. The team also developed an overall strategic management plan for the Mayfield Sands Golf Course, located in the upper watershed. Biohabitats performed a visual assessment of the three sites conditions, analyzed existing conditions through literature review, performed initial agency outreach, and developed conceptual designs and estimates to assist in further recruitment of funding for the next project phase.
|Euclid Creek Habitat Restoration Concept Plan Development||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Facilities Framework Planning Studies|| |
Swarthmore, Pennsylvania , United States After analyzing the ecological, stormwater drainage, and landscape management conditions of the campus of Swarthmore College, Biohabitats recommended a variety of sustainable site planning solutions to incorporate into the College’s planning study. These included enhancing the landscape with more native plant species to better connect it with the neighboring Crum Woods property and converting underutilized turf areas to native vegetation, rain gardens, edible/agricultural gardens, and gathering areas. The suggestions present new opportunities to integrate the environmental context of the campus into the academic experience and curriculum. Biohabitats’ analysis of the campus further revealed that turf conversion and further implementation of stormwater management practices would lower the carbon footprint associated with mowing, lessen irrigation needs, and reduce overall maintenance efforts, while providing numerous environmental benefits. To alleviate flooding in nuisance areas and filter stormwater draining into Crum Creek, on the western edge of the campus, Biohabitats suggested a multilevel stormwater management approach utilizing curb extensions along flood-prone roads to divert and filter water through vegetated swales, bioretention in and around parking lots, permeable paving in parking lots, and rain gardens integrated throughout the campus. In several eroded tributaries to Crum Creek Biohabitats suggested the inclusion of regenerative stormwater conveyance practices that help slow and filter water draining to the creek. Enhancing native vegetation throughout the campus and establishing vegetative connections with the College’s Crum Woods and Crum Creek corridor will not only improve water quality and wildlife habitat, but also enhance recreation opportunities.
|Facilities Framework Planning Studies||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Regenerative Design,||Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fairfax County Parks Invasive Plant Site Prioritization Model|| |
Fairfax County, Virginia , United States In Fairfax County, VA, urbanization and forest fragmentation have created ideal conditions for non-native invasive plant species. With over 450 park units totaling over 24,000 acres, the county’s extensive parks system is under direct assault from numerous invasive organisms. Left unchecked, invasive plant species threaten to undermine the regenerative capacity of county forestland and ultimately destroy its value. Recognizing the dynamic nature of invasive species and the need to maximize the resources, the Fairfax County Park Authority turned to Biohabitats ISM to develop a comprehensive response strategy and site treatment prioritization model. Much more than a simple inventory, the Biohabitats model is a decision-making tool that the Park Authority can use to rank the relative value of different sites within the park system and, in combination with the invasive plant infestation level, prioritize sites for control. By integrating a site’s cultural value into the decision process, this unique application also helps the Authority serve its central function of providing opportunities for citizens to interact with the natural world. Based upon the principle: “protect the best first,” the model has shifted the focus in the parks system from “acres treated” towards “acres restored.” It has allowed the county to maximize the return on its investment in invasive plant control by assuring that treatment sites reflect the core ecological and cultural values that exist within this densely populated region.
|Fairfax County Parks Invasive Plant Site Prioritization Model||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Ecological Restoration,||Fairfax County, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fairmount Park Natural Lands Restoration Implementation|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States After completing a Natural Lands Restoration Plan to guide ecosystem restoration in seven watershed and estuary parks within Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park system, the Fairmount Park Commission turned to Biohabitats for help with implementation. Biohabitats worked with the Commission to prioritize restoration sites within two of the larger parks-Tacony Creek Park and Cobbs Creek Park-based on feasibility and value. Biohabitats then prepared site-specific restoration plans, specifications, and bid documents for 89 high-priority sites and supervised the implementation of the first 12 restoration projects. These included stream and wetland restoration, invasive species control specifications for the 12 most common invasive species (including Japanese knotweed and kudzu), forest structure restoration, warm season native meadow restoration, and stormwater best management practices such as infiltration and bioretention facilities. In addition to design, Biohabitats participated in community meetings and prepared all federal and state permitting applications. The restored sites have not only delivered the benefits of increased habitat and reduced maintenance costs, but also stormwater attenuation, local flood protection, a reduction of in-stream erosion and sedimentation and an overall improvement of park aesthetics and visitor experiences.
|Fairmount Park Natural Lands Restoration Implementation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fairmount Park Wissahickon Watershed Gully Restoration Design-Build|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States Through a design-build contract with the City of Philadelphia, Biohabitats restored seven areas along Wissahickon Creek, a degraded, highly urbanized stream system running through the city’s Wissahickon Park. Stormwater discharge from impervious areas outside of the park and well-used trails that were acting as conduits for runoff had caused gully erosion on steep slopes of the creek. Upland trails were converting into eroded gullies, and delivering high-energy water, sediment, and associated pollutants to the Wissahickon and its tributaries. The stormwater-dominated flow also caused further erosion and degradation within the same tributaries. Biohabitats first addressed stormwater in the watershed through source controls (e.g., rain gardens and infiltration practices), then restored the eroded gullies and tributaries using natural, recycled materials available from Fairmount Parks (e.g., surplus soil and rock from other projects, woody debris, shredded hardwood, etc.). A final step was to redesign and construct trails in a fashion that would reduce their role in degradation while enhancing the park experience for visitors. Two of the restoration sites were located within the Park’s Walnut Lane Golf Course. At one site, gully erosion from golf course runoff had become a safety hazard and was threatening a fairway. Biohabitats restored the gully and headwater stream using a regenerative stream channel technique which uses a carbon-rich sand bed in combination with pools and riffle grade controls to filter and provide safe, non-erosive stormwater runoff from the golf course. In another part of the golf couse, Biohabiats daylighted a piped section of stream and restored additional stream reaches above and below the piped section using natural channel design techniques. This improved stream ecology, water quality, and course aesthetics and integrity. Biohabitats also removed 600 feet of poor condition cart path, re-routed traffic, installed a new section of asphalt cart path, and constructed a pedestrian bridge for
|Fairmount Park Wissahickon Watershed Gully Restoration Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fanno Creek Bank Restoration–Crawford Property|| |
Beaverton, Oregon , United States Fanno Creek is an urbanized tributary of the Tualatin River. Storm flows eroded a section of the creek on private property in Beaverton, Oregon and contributed large amounts of sediment into the channel. Clean Water Services worked with a private landowner to gain cooperative access to the reach to perform assessment and design work. Biohabitats worked with CWS staff to install a bioengineered stream bank stabilization structure. Materials included over 20 root wads, 40 logs, slash, willow cuttings, and coir fabric lifts. Project elements included the diversion of Fanno Creek and dewatering of the isolated work zone. Biohabitats used 10″ electric submersible pumps to divert up to 10 cubic feet per second throughout the duration of the project. Biohabitats coordinated fish rescue and salvage efforts. The reach now has bank stability that includes a large woody debris habitat element providing cover for fish and other aquatic species during high flow events. When Fanno Creek accesses its floodplain, the floodplain structures provide a measure of habitat cover as well.
|Fanno Creek Bank Restoration–Crawford Property||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Beaverton, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Feasibility of Payments for Ecosystem Services for Forest Stewards||Can protecting a forest be as profitable as clearing the land for other use? This question has motivated conservation professionals to examine Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) programs to compensate people who own property that benefits the public. After all, their land provides vital benefits to their neighbors. Forests can improve water quality, trap carbon, stabilize coastlines, provide habitat, generate and maintain soils, improve water quality, dampen storm flows, abate air pollution, and provide food, fiber, fuel, and shelter. One of the economic benefits produced by the forest is timber, which supplies mulch, lumber, veneer, plywood, and paper. People also enjoy hunting, fishing, hiking, camping, birding, and horseback riding in their forests. While markets exist to set the price for an economic good like timber, many of the ecosystem services listed above are poorly valued, if at all. Biohabitats worked with researchers at the University of Maryland to evaluate the value that forest ecosystem services provide to Maryland’s economy and determine a fair price for ecosystem services. On a per capita basis, a resident of Maryland enjoys $830 worth of ecosystem services from the forest as public value without paying anything to the land steward. If all state residents were to contribute PES to generate the approximate value of the timber and ecosystem services provided by Maryland’s forest, each would need pay between $43 and $124 per year. This analysis was presented to the Harry Hughes Agro-Ecology Center.||Feasibility of Payments for Ecosystem Services for Forest Stewards||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Bioworks,||, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fee-Simon Tidal Wetland Restoration|| |
Clatsop County, Oregon , United States The Columbia River has changed radically over the last 100 years, and today the system can only support a fraction of the once-mighty populations of fish such as salmon and steelhead that split their lives between freshwater and the open ocean. Since 1974, the Columbia River Estuary Taskforce has been working to protect and restore the estuary’s vital habitats and functions. Biohabitats was contracted to restore the Fee-Simon wetland by breaching the existing levee in five locations and re-connecting the existing backwater channel networks to the South Fork Klaskanine River, restoring the daily natural tidal processes that were eliminated by the levee. One of the challenges for the salmonids that breed in that river is the flat, open structure of the channel, with water that moves uniformly and rapidly through the system. To improve the fish habitat, Biohabitats placed large woody debris into the river to create refuges for juvenile fish and pools of slow-moving water with rich foraging opportunities. Perhaps most importantly, restoration brought the floodplain and isolated wetlands back into contact with the river’s main channel. Biohabitats’ responsibilities included project planning and scheduling, sequencing and designing methods for the construction, erosion and sediment control, excavation, installing large woody debris, and overseeing the replanting. This project had a wide array of energetic project stakeholders, including the Natural Resources Conservation Service, and it was the result of years of permitting and planning. The final construction schedule was highly compressed, requiring seamless coordination and strong project leadership.
|Fee-Simon Tidal Wetland Restoration||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Clatsop County, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fernhill South Wetlands Natural Treatment System|| |
Portland, Oregon , United States “Fernhill represents the very essence of Clean Water Services, where we couple the power of Mother Nature with technology in partnership with others to create elegant and beautiful water solutions.” —Diane Taniguchi-Dennis, Deputy General Manager, Clean Water Services When Clean Water Services (CWS), an Oregon utility, wanted to restore three former sewage lagoons associated with the Forest Grove Wastewater Treatment facility, they turned to Biohabitats to lead the design team. Though the ponds were occasionally visited for wildlife viewing, they held untapped ecological and recreational potential. Biohabitats’ design transformed the lagoons into a rich, 90-acre mosaic of riparian wetlands that provide natural wastewater treatment while also enhancing ecological function and recreational and educational opportunities along the Tualatin River floodplain. The restoration first involved draining the lagoons, drying more than 200,000 cubic yards of soil, and moving the soil to create precise contours and depths. Control structures were strategically place to encourage the growth and establishment of 750,000 native wetland plants and 3.5 billion seeds that were planted for water quality and habitat. 180 logs and snags were anchored into place to provide wildlife habitat. The diverse habitats created by the restoration include open water, mudflat, emergent marsh, scrub-shrub, and upland areas that support wildlife. The enhanced habitat for waterfowl and shorebirds, has helped make the wetlands an important stopover site in the Pacific Flyway. Birds and wildlife have taken to the site, and human visitors are flocking to enjoy trail improvements, new outdoor classroom areas and views of the emerging wetlands. In terms of water quality, the wetlands reduce the temperature of the treated wastewater flowing into the Tualatin River, and serve to regenerate the complex systems of life and nutrients that exist in healthy waters. The treatment facility will treat 5-18 million gallons per
|Fernhill South Wetlands Natural Treatment System||Cascadia Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Portland, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Flewellen Creek Stream Restoration|| |
Fort Bend County, Texas , United States Biohabitats designed the restoration of approximately 15,000 linear feet of Flewellen Creek. Years of ditching, grazing, and loss of riparian vegetation resulted in severe erosion and the rural stream channel’s loss of connection to its floodplain. Biohabitats, along with SWA Group and Brown & Gay Engineers, helped restore the degraded stream corridor and establish it as the centerpiece of a 3,200-acre, mixed-use community development. More than 25 miles of trails follow 400 acres of open space corridors that meander along the restored Flewellen Creek. After performing a fluvial geomorphic assessment, Biohabitats developed a concept plan that reconfigured the planform, profile, and cross section to a stable form under the existing hydrologic regime. The design realigned the stream as a low gradient, meandering system, and created floodplain wetlands and native riparian zones. Biohabitats then helped prepare final design drawings and provided construction oversight. The project received a Merit Award from the Texas Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects and a Silver Award in Engineering Excellence from the Texas Chapter of the American Council of Engineering Companies.
|Flewellen Creek Stream Restoration||Ecological Restoration,||Fort Bend County, Texas, United States||featured-project featured|
|Flight 93 National Memorial Phase 1A Soil and Water Testing|| |
Somerset County, Pennsylvania , United States In 2010, the National Park Service (NPS) began construction of the Flight 93 National Memorial to honor the 40 passengers and crew members of Flight 93 for their act of heroism on 9/11. The memorial, which includes an Arrival Court and Visitors Center, a Memorial Plaza, and a Field of Honor, comprises more than 2,220 acres. The memorial site is located on a reclaimed surface mine, where years of coal mining have scarred the landscape and created profound challenges for revegetation. To help address these challenges, Biohabitats performed soil and water sampling and conducted an assessment of overall site conditions to inform the first phase of the memorial site’s construction. Forty-eight soil sampling locations were identified based upon the proposed landscape design plans. Soil samples were tested for soil fertility and associated horticultural parameters. Recommendations were subsequently developed for soil management and amendments necessary to assure proper survival and vigor of target plantings.
|Flight 93 National Memorial Phase 1A Soil and Water Testing||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Somerset County, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Flight 93 National Memorial Phase 1B Revegetation|| |
Somerset County, Pennsylvania , United States The Flight 93 National Memorial Act of 2002 authorized the creation of the Flight 93 National Memorial to “commemorate the passengers and crew of Flight 93 who, on September 11, 2001, courageously gave their lives thereby thwarting a planned attack on our Nation’s Capital.” The Act charged the Flight 93 Advisory Commission with developing recommendations for the planning, design, construction, and long-term management of a permanent memorial at the crash site. The National Park Service is responsible for the development and long-term stewardship of the memorial. As part of Phase 1B of this overall project, the Biohabitats team provided a variety of services related to the revegetation of this national memorial. Technical assistance and revegetation consultation was conducted throughout the life of this contract. The team conducted project site preparation in the form of application of soil amendments based on soil and water testing results. Plant material installation was conducted and included seeding, seedling and large diameter (>2”) tree planting. Plant watering, mulching, protective devices and protective chemical applications were provided as part of plant establishment care. The Biohabitats team conducted revegetation/restoration success monitoring including pest and pathogen presence during the 2-year warranty period. Also part of this contract was the development of an Integrated Pest Management Plan (IPM) following NPS protocol which was specific to this project site.
|Flight 93 National Memorial Phase 1B Revegetation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Somerset County, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Floyds Fork Greenway Landscape Conservation and Restoration Management Plan|| |
Jefferson County, Kentucky , United States Spanning 3,200 acres and stretching over 19 miles, Floyds Fork Greenway is poised to become the nation’s largest urban park. Despite the Fork’s beauty and abundance of life, the quality of its water has been degraded by development and pollution. Without a plan in place to manage and capitalize on the opportunities its rich natural resources present, the Fork is at risk of losing some of the very features that make it so special. Recognizing that the landscape provides the ultimate foundation for the Floyds Fork Greenway, 21st Century Parks retained Biohabitats to develop a Landscape Conservation and Restoration Management Plan (LCRMP) to bridge the gap between the Greenway’s master plan and the implementation of specific initiatives. The LCRMP is a GIS-based, interactive tool that provides specific prescriptions for conservation and restoration initiatives throughout the park. It is based on the vision of the Greenway as a legacy forest, a wild and scenic Fork and a living laboratory. Adaptive management is an important component and guiding feature of the plan. The LCRMP empowers 21st Century Parks to identify the Fork’s treasured historical, geological, and environmental sites, and continue to preserve, restore and enhance them in harmony with planned park development in perpetuity. Biohabitats is also responsible for developing ecological restoration and mitigation designs for the park, assisting with permitting, and providing details and specifications for various environmental, soil bioengineering and wildlife habitat features in the park. Taking complex restoration initiatives and converting them into easily understood drawings and specifications that achieve the desired outcome is critical to the success of the park.
|Floyds Fork Greenway Landscape Conservation and Restoration Management Plan||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Jefferson County, Kentucky, United States||featured-project featured|
|Floyds Fork Greenway Master Plan|| |
Jefferson County, Kentucky , United States As a key member of a multi-firm consultant team for the Floyds Fork Greenway Master Plan, Biohabitats performed a GIS-based inventory and analysis of natural resources within the project area to help identify conservation and restoration opportunities and guide the master plan’s arrangement of park uses, programs, and facilities. The work included GIS data collection and interpretation of items such as geology, soils, water resources, and landscape ecology within the watershed. The project team used this information to help develop greater understanding of interpretive opportunities, and identify the area’s natural resources. Biohabitats has also helped field-identify existing wetlands and develop map exhibits for the ongoing ecological baseline study. This project earned a Merit Award for Master Planning in the National Park Service’s “Designing the Parks” competition.
|Floyds Fork Greenway Master Plan||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Jefferson County, Kentucky, United States||featured-project featured|
|Forest Conservation Inspection for City Forestry Department|| |
Rockville, Maryland , United States The City of Rockville, located about 30 minutes northwest of Washington, DC, is Maryland’s largest incorporated city. Temporarily acting as Forestry Inspector for the City’s Forestry Department, Biohabitats reviewed Forest Stand Delineations and Forest Conservation Plans submitted to the City as required by its Forest and Tree Preservation Ordinance. The work included field verification of plan accuracy and completeness. Biohabitats also periodically inspected active construction sites to verify compliance with City ordinances regarding forest and tree protection measures. Post planting inspections and post invasive species treatment inspections were conducted to verify that those tasks were conducted following City specifications. All of Biohabitats’ review and inspection results were reported to the City Forestry Department along with recommendations. Enforcement of the tree ordinance used by the City of Rockville is an effective way to conserve, manage and improve their urban forests, especially during the current level rapid land development in the local area.
|Forest Conservation Inspection for City Forestry Department||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Rockville, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Forest Hill & Hickory Elementary Schools Bioretention Retrofit|| |
Harford County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats performed low impact development (LID) assessment and design for bioretention retrofits at Hickory and Forest Hill Elementary Schools. These projects were the first bioretention retrofits completed for the Harford County Public Schools and serve as a model for future efforts in the school system. The retrofit designs provide on-site water quality treatment while considering educational value and safety issues. They also contribute to the County’s pollutant loading reduction goals and watershed restoration objectives. Biohabitats began by assessing LID retrofit opportunities to treat impervious areas of both schools. After the sites for final design were selected, Biohabitats performed hydrologic and hydraulic analysis, developed construction plans, and produced an engineer’s cost estimate for a bioretention cell retrofit in an existing parking lot island at Forest Hill Elementary School. This project provided water quality treatment and safe conveyance of runoff from 0.3 acres of previously untreated parking lot. Biohabitats also developed inspection and maintenance guidance for the overall project and produced planting plans all three retrofit designs. Providing a unique outreach component to this project, Biohabitats staff visited fourth graders at Forest Hill and taught them about the importance of native plants, the benefits of bioretention. Once constructed, the retrofit was celebrated with a dedication ceremony attended by students, faculty, County staff and officials, and Biohabitats staff. The project received a 2011 Top Stormwater and Erosion Control Project award by Storm Water Solutions Magazine.
|Forest Hill & Hickory Elementary Schools Bioretention Retrofit||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Harford County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fort Belvoir Sustainability Strategies|| |
Fort Belvoir, Virginia , United States Fort Belvoir is in the process of developing a Master Plan to accommodate 21,500 additional military and civilian employees as a result of the Base Realignment and Closure Committee (BRAC) 2005 decision. The post-BRAC Fort Belvoir is envisioned to be a high-density, transit-oriented community with facilities within walking distance of mass transit options and other services. Within Fort Belvoir are copious natural resources highlighted by the Accotink Bay Wildlife Refuge. The array of intact interior forests and tidal wetlands support a host of threatened and endangered species and provide a key stopover for migrating birds. To protect the existing natural resources of the base, and to ensure that future expansion is carried out in an environmentally responsible manner, Biohabitats worked with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP (SOM) to develop an environmental sustainability model that uses a whole-systems framework. The Sustainability Model was then applied to various master plan initiatives to test and refine redevelopment options to maximize environmental sustainability. Biohabitats planned and led a workshop with key stakeholders to explore the boundaries of environmental sustainability initiatives that will result in long term cost and time savings while enhancing the quality of the site from an aesthetic, ecological, and human comfort perspective.
|Fort Belvoir Sustainability Strategies||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Fort Belvoir, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fort McHenry Tidal Wetland Restoration|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States Biohabitats provided design peer review and construction management of the Fort McHenry tidal wetlands, the first wetland mitigation project for the State of Maryland. Located on the site of the Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in Baltimore, the wetland restoration project was created to offset impacts associated with the construction of the I-95 Fort McHenry Tunnel. Under the Clean Water Act of 1972, the State of Maryland was required to restore the biological, chemical and physical integrity of this water body. Biohabitats worked with City, State and Federal agencies to develop an 11-acre tidal estuarine wetland directly over a portion of the tunnel. Created from material excavated from a ventilation building that sits atop the tunnel, the wetland was designed to allow tidal exchange and flushing. Based on reference sites, eleven species of indigenous, estuarine aquatic plants were propagated and contract grown for the project. Once grading was completed, over 40,000 plants were installed.
|Fort McHenry Tidal Wetland Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Fort Wayne Riparian Management Plan|| |
Fort Wayne, Indiana , United States The confluence of the St. Joseph, St. Mary’s and Maumee Rivers, located at the geographic center of Fort Wayne, was once the heart of the city’s life, economy, and culture as well. Over past decades, however, these river systems had become underutilized and disconnected from the surrounding landscape as levees were installed along the rivers. In an effort to reestablish the rivers as the centerpiece of Fort Wayne and a world-class riverfront destination, the City of Fort Wayne launched a Riverfront Development Study, which led to the development of a conceptual plan for revitalization, recreation, and stewardship along more than two miles of riverfront. Recognizing that thriving riverfronts require healthy riparian corridors, the city turned to Biohabitats, a member of the Study team, to develop a riparian management plan for the study area. Building upon data gathered and analyses conducted during the Riverfront Redevelopment Study, Biohabitats conducted additional assessments of aquatic, terrestrial and near shore conditions, and analyzed river morphology and bank stability, as well as vegetation communities, soils, aquatic and riparian habitat, shoreline conditions, viewsheds, and urban infrastructure. The Biohabitats team then crafted the management plan, which includes site-specific guidelines to enhance biodiversity and overall ecological functionality of riparian areas, protect and conserve riparian habitat, manage invasive species, and manage viewsheds. It also includes a job description and maintenance guidance for a Riparian Maintenance Manager and an interpretative graphic. The riparian management plan will not only help protect the revitalized riverfronts of Fort Wayne’s Riverfront Redevelopment study area; it also provides the City with a model for enhancing other riparian areas within city limits.
|Fort Wayne Riparian Management Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Fort Wayne, Indiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Four Mile Run Restoration Master Plan|| |
Arlington County/Alexandria, Virginia , United States Over the past century, Four Mile Run has changed dramatically. Human development has transformed the channel and its watershed. A once relatively natural river corridor is now shaped and controlled by urban infrastructure, with resulting changes in channel form and decreased riparian vegetation buffer widths. Artificially elevated peak flows are currently confined within the flood control project boundaries. The Four Mile Run Restoration Master Plan focuses on restoring a 2.3-mile levee corridor along the Potomac River. Biohabitats, as a subconsultant to Rhodeside and Harwell, created design recommendations to increase ecological, aesthetic, and cultural values in and near the stream without diminishing its flood control capabilities. Biohabitats worked collaboratively to assess current ecologic, geomorphic and hydrologic conditions within the project area, create hydraulic models that assess the risk of flooding to nearby communities, and determine the feasibility of retrofitting flood control structures to enhance ecologic and geomorphic function and enhance wetland and riparian habitat along the length of the channel.
|Four Mile Run Restoration Master Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Arlington County/Alexandria, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Freshkills Park Landscape Restoration|| |
Staten Island, New York , United States At 2,200 acres - almost three times the size of Central Park - New York’s Freshkills Park will be one of the most ambitious public works projects in the world, combining state-of-the-art ecological restoration techniques with extraordinary settings for recreation, public art, and facilities for many sports and programs that are unusual in a city. While nearly forty-five percent of the site was once used as a landfill, the remainder of the site is currently composed of wetlands, open waterways, and unfilled lowland areas. As part of a multi-disciplinary team, Biohabitats led the ecological components of the project. The many facets covered included soils standards and specifications, restoration of native and indigenous plant communities, and control of invasive species. Other design contributions included innovative stormwater practices utilizing native vegetation for the planned network of roads that run through and around the site. The Biohabitats team also performed natural resource assessments of the North and South Parks, developed ecological schematic designs for North Park, and created strategies for native community restoration and soils management. Biohabitats’ ecological restoration efforts also emphasized the restoration of stream, shorelines, and regionally important freshwater and tidal wetlands.
|Freshkills Park Landscape Restoration||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Staten Island, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Freshkills Park–North Park Wetland Restoration and Living Shoreline Design|| |
Staten Island, New York , United States Biohabitats helped New York City’s Department of Parks & Recreation (NYCDPR) restore two acres of coastal wetland habitat within Freshkills Park, a site once known as the world’s largest landfill. This pilot project, which will guide further wetland restoration in the park by demonstrating successful, cost-effective measures for restoring tidal marsh, was made possible by a grant from the New York Department of State’s Office of Coastal, Local Government & Community Sustainability. Biohabitats’ transformative salt marsh and coastal habitat restoration design included “living shoreline” stabilization features and ecologically viable wetland habitat and coastal upland grassland. Biohabitats designed the site to function in the face of rising sea levels and other climate change scenarios, and then obtained all of the required permits for construction. Biohabitats also developed the full design and specifications required to put the project out to bid according to NYC protocol. Another element of the project involved a unique experiment. Before restoration construction began, NYCDPR conducted a test to determine if goats would harvest the site’s invasive species, including the dominant common reed (Phragmites australis). While the goats did graze on the common reed, the experiment only lasted one month, so the site still required the use of some herbicide in order to clear all invasive plant species before construction began. A living shoreline, constructed with coir fiber logs, bags of mussels, and trucked-in sand, addresses multiple objectives simultaneously: dissipation of water energy, creation of aquatic habitat, stabilization of the shoreline, and additional erosion control. Native grasses and forbs, such as salt marsh cordgrass and sea lavender, were then planted to further secure the site and provide additional habitat. Constructed in the spring of 2012, the restoration at Freshkills Park has already yielded benefits. The park was credited with protecting nearby Staten Island neighborhoods
|Freshkills Park–North Park Wetland Restoration and Living Shoreline Design||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Staten Island, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Gaithersburg Green Streets Retrofit Evaluation Project|| |
Gaithersburg, Maryland , United States Biohabitats worked with the City of Gaithersburg to develop a streamlined process for determining the feasibility of green street retrofits at locations throughout the city. The city is interested in expanding its green street program in order to disseminate new stormwater management techniques, comply with new federal and state water quality requirements, and create attractive and sustainable community assets. The city had previously generated an inventory of 121 potential green street project sites which required additional screening for their feasibility and ability to meet the city’s goals. Biohabitats developed a streamlined process to help the city hone its inventory and identify the most favorable sites for future implementation. Biohabitats first developed a core set of desktop screening factors that used GIS coverage to assess street characteristics such as slope, available right-of-way width, and parking needs. Other factors, such as the presence or absence of a watershed total maximum daily load (TMDL), were also incorporated. The screening process resulted in a score for each site reflecting its favorability. The sites with the highest scores were examined during a one-day field assessment to confirm feasibility and to note any factors that were not evident during the desktop assessment. During field review, the team refined the list of potential retrofit sites and considered other innovative practices that could be incorporated at select locations. Biohabitats then developed concept-level designs for the city’s two highest-priority sites, including one in a popular neighborhood park. The summary report outlined the screening process to allow the city to screen additional sites in the future
|Gaithersburg Green Streets Retrofit Evaluation Project||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Galisteo Creek Stream Restoration|| |
Santa Fe County, New Mexico , United States Galisteo Creek winds down from the Sangre de Cristo Mountains through semi-arid ranch land and centuries old pueblo Indian archaeological sites. The ephemeral creek is subject to extremes between dry conditions and flash floods. The variable hydrologic regime creates a stream dynamic where banks tend to be unstable and new meanders can suddenly cut through established riparian forests. After a devastating flood event in 2013 washed out newly installed channel restoration structures and threatened his home, the owner of a small ranch contacted Biohabitats in 2014 to rethink the problem. The first step was to conduct a geomorphic assessment of the site to identify the characteristics of the project reach compared with a more stable reach downstream. A current topographic survey was prepared to serve as a base for design of channel restoration. Biohabitats analyzed locally stable channel geomorphic parameters to establish design width, depth, slope, and meander curvature for the new channel. The outside bend of the meander was reinforced with timber post vanes to keep the channel thalweg away from erodible banks. Large boulders were placed on the upstream side of the post vanes and live willow cuttings were installed to deter end-around erosion of the post vanes. The outside bend flood plain overbank was kept low to allow early flooding and willow and cottonwood cuttings were installed on the bench to reduce velocities near the bank. During the 2014 summer monsoon season, Galisteo Creek experienced several high-intensity flood events. The restored channel withstood the flood stress and riparian plantings took hold.
|Galisteo Creek Stream Restoration||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Santa Fe County, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Galveston Island State Park Master Plan|| |
Galveston County, Texas , United States Hurricanes often have dramatic effects on barrier islands, and the impact of 2008’s Hurricane Ike on Galveston Island, Texas was no exception. Yet the hurricane left in its wake a keen awareness of the need to address the consequences of such storms and their dramatic effects on the island. It also catalyzed a master planning effort to guide the redevelopment, management, protection and restoration of Galveston Island State Park, a treasured natural and recreational resource that is bordered by the Gulf of Mexico to the south and West Bay of Galveston Bay to the north. Despite being surrounded by developed land, this 2,300-acre park is home to a variety of natural habitats, including beach and dunes, coastal strand prairie, tidal marsh and seagrass beds. Biohabitats provided professional services as a key member of the planning team. The plan produced for Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, looks out on a 50-year horizon, addressing not only coastal storms, land use, and infrastructure needs, but also projected sea level rise and morphology changes. After conducting an inventory and assessment of the park’s natural resources, we performed spatial modeling to project the impacts of sea level rise on the landscape, and how habitats may shift accordingly. Next, this information was utilized to develop a plan to guide the restoration and management of park habitats.
|Galveston Island State Park Master Plan||Conservation Planning, Ecological Restoration,||Galveston County, Texas, United States||featured-project featured|
|Gateway Commons Water Quality Monitoring|| |
Clarksburg, Montgomery County, Maryland , United States Gateway Commons, situated on 45 acres of rolling farmland, surrounds an unnamed, first order, tributary which flows offsite and enters Little Seneca Creek. Due to its ecological significance, Seneca Creek and its tributaries have been designated by Montgomery County as a Special Protection Area (SPA). Land disturbances within SPAs require measures during construction to minimize sediment loading. They also require extensive water quality monitoring to ensure minimal impact to biological resources. Applying years of expertise in ecological assessment and conservation planning, Biohabitats developed and implemented a water quality monitoring program and provided guidance on erosion and sediment control measures. The project involved the relocation of a major roadway through the center of the property and the development of a residential/commercial community. Biohabitats worked with the land owner to develop several goals for the project, including: minimize storm flow runoff, minimize increases in ambient water temperatures, minimize reductions in stream base flows, reduce suspended solids and control toxic substances from entering the stream. Biohabitats then developed and implemented a multi-year monitoring program to measure stream temperature during the summer and stream flow and groundwater levels throughout the year. In order to develop a rating curve, Biohabitats measured stream velocity to determine stream discharge.
|Gateway Commons Water Quality Monitoring||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Clarksburg, Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Georgia Tech Water Harvesting & Reuse Systems|| |
Atlanta, Georgia , United States In collaboration with Lake Flato Architects and Cooper Carry Architects, Biohabitats provided planning and engineering services for water infrastructure for the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Engineered Biosystems Building (EBB) and Commons Building. Constructed in 2015, the 220,000 square foot EBB, which enhances the Institute’s partnership with Emory University Hospital and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, houses research labs for engineering, biology, chemistry, and computing related to human health and biomedical breakthroughs. Biohabitats planned a highly efficient water system for the EBB which harvests rainwater, cooling condensate, and foundation dewatering in an above ground cistern and reuses this water to flush toilets in the building. Overflow from this system flows, along with stormwater, through water features and into an underground cistern, where it is stored for reuse in irrigation. Biohabitats also participated in a design charrette and provided water systems planning and engineering for the proposed Commons Building, which will house a new dining hall, student gathering areas, and new spaces for the School of Music. For the conceptual design phase, Biohabitats provided water reuse options based on a preliminary water balance and led the Site and Community Design Team in distilling goals and strategies related to maximizing water re-use on site. These included harvesting and reusing rainwater, cooling condensate, and potentially greywater for reuse in flushing toilets and irrigating the landscape.
|Georgia Tech Water Harvesting & Reuse Systems||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Atlanta, Georgia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Glade Creek On-Call Stream Restoration Services for North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program|| |
Alleghany County, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats was retained by the NC Ecosystem Enhancement Program to restore unstable and eroded channel on approximately 2,430 feet of Glade Creek and approximately 275 feet on an unnamed tributary to Glade Creek, in the mountains of Alleghany County, North Carolina. The channel had become entrenched and unstable due to increased storm flows caused by intensive agricultural practices and logging in the watershed. The channel pattern, profile and dimension were reconfigured to improve stability, allow floodwaters access to the floodplain, and improve instream habitat. Glade Creek is a designated trout stream in North Carolina. The NC Wildlife Resources Commission has expressed interest in restocking the strain of brook trout native to North Carolina in the restored unnamed tributary to Glade Creek. An existing beaver pond on Glade Creek was incorporated into the restoration design. This innovative approach will allow the beavers to maintain the pond while the restored channel bypasses the pond to allow for fish passage.
|Glade Creek On-Call Stream Restoration Services for North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Alleghany County, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Goose Creek Stream Restoration|| |
Durham, North Carolina , United States Goose Creek is a prominent urban stream in downtown Durham. Its urbanized watershed supplies water to the Falls Lake reservoir, a major source of drinking water for Raleigh. The North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program, in cooperation with the City of Durham, enlisted Biohabitats to restore a 1,500-foot section of Goose Creek to natural condition. The project reach had been highly modified and artificially confined by concrete on the upstream reach and rock walls on the downstream reach. Stream banks were lined with historic trees that required preservation wherever possible. The design had to factor in sanitary sewers, water lines, stormwater infrastructure, and neighborhood revitalization plans. Biohabitats conducted a stream assessment, developed restoration alternatives, conducted a feasibility analysis, created a channel and buffer design, evaluated potential stormwater best management practices, prepared a bid package, assisted with award administration, and performed construction oversight. The final design accommodated the need for more natural channel sinuosity and pronounced channel features (riffles, runs, pools, and glides) within a relatively narrow project corridor. One section of the restored channel includes an innovative, two-stage channel to preserve low flow habitat in this low sediment-supply setting.
|Goose Creek Stream Restoration||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Durham, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Grand Teton Resort Community Ecological Assessment and Master Planning|| |
Teton County, Idaho , United States Recognizing the value of developing sustainable landscapes and practices, Mahogany Ridge LLC called on Biohabitats to spearhead the ecological master planning effort for a resort community in the Teton River Valley. Biohabitats provided research and review of readily available information relevant to the ecology of the site. In order to establish habitat targets and associated design metrics, Biohabitats met with wildlife experts and discussed regional conservation and restoration strategies for a wide range of species including greater sandhill cranes, Yellowstone cutthroat trout, deer, and elk. Biohabitats performed a field characterization of the site and surrounding landscape and identified habitat conservation considerations which were included on the existing conditions plan. We focused on identifying vegetation communities and common associated wildlife species, wetland areas, drainage features, and major areas of noxious weed infestations, soil erosion, and human impact. We also identified and characterized similar, relatively undisturbed vegetation communities to be used as reference sites in developing restoration and conservation targets. Biohabitats, working with a team of planners and landscape architects, forged a master plan that incorporated conservation measures for the protection of sandhill crane habitat, feeding plots for sandhill cranes, wildlife corridors to allow movement of megafauna across the site, small mammal and song bird pathes, restoration concepts for Mahogany Creek including habitat for Yellowstone cutthroat trout, and stormwater management facilities that take advantage of the natural character of the site.
|Grand Teton Resort Community Ecological Assessment and Master Planning||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Regenerative Design,||Teton County, Idaho, United States||featured-project featured|
|Great Kills Harbor–Evaluation of an Offshore Breakwater System|| |
Staten Island, New York , United States Staten Island’s Great Kills Harbor is nestled within the 580-acre Great Kills Park, part of the Gateway National Recreation Area. Once a soft shoreline with extensive subtidal flats and shoals, the Harbor historically fostered a thriving ecology which offered both wildlife habitat and coastal protection. Over time, portions of the shoreline were hardened, and the Harbor is now home to six marinas and a number of commercial and residential areas. Though its habitat and protective value have diminished, it remains an ecological and recreational haven within New York City. In 2012, the Harbor suffered severe damage from wave action and shoreline erosion during Superstorm Sandy. With retreat not a viable strategy for the community, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission launched a study to determine the best way to improve the Harbor’s resilience in the face of future storms. As the ecological consultant on a team led by Ocean and Coastal Consultants/COWI and SCAPE, Biohabitats played a key role in evaluating strategies to strengthen the Harbor’s resilience while maintaining its ecological and recreational value. Biohabitats modified the Evaluation of Planned Wetlands methodology to assess the site’s nearshore, upland, and coastal wetland ecology. This included an evaluation of existing habitat and site attributes, as well as potential future storm conditions under rising sea levels. The team also provided insight into natural infrastructure alternatives and potential ecological impacts and benefits of the breakwater structures. All findings were and presented to stakeholders and included as part of a final project summary report. The summary report is now being used to guide future planning and shoreline adaptation, promote resilience, and help demonstrate how a “coastal green infrastructure” alternative to more traditional approaches can reduce coastal risk in New York City.
|Great Kills Harbor–Evaluation of an Offshore Breakwater System||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Staten Island, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Green Bulkheads for Cuyahoga River Navigation Channel|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States Cleveland’s Cuyahoga River Navigation Channel is an important and thriving passageway for maritime commerce, but it is a daunting corridor for “transient” fish. For these fish, the ability to migrate upriver to spawn as adults and downriver to return to Lake Erie as juveniles is critical to their survival. Bustling with barge traffic, subject to frequent ice and storm flows, and lined by bulkheads for five miles, the Cuyahoga River Navigation Channel offers little to no habitat. Since 2006, the Buffalo District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been developing, testing and implementing innovative bulkheads and technologies to create habitat for larval fish while maintaining the channel for navigation. Building on the lessons learned through that process, the Cuyahoga County Planning Commission (CCPC) initiated an effort to explore options for retrofitting bulkheads so they provide both navigational and ecological function. Working with the CCPC, Biohabitats is leading a design team to develop a retrofit solution guided primarily by models found in nature. This approach involves the use of “Biomimicry Thinking,” a design process that begins with scoping: identifying the desired function, defining the context within which the design must fit, and integrating “Life’s Principles,” deep patterns found among thriving species. A discovery phase follows, in which biological models for achieving the desired function are identified. This leads to creative concept and design development, and, ultimately, evaluation. Biohabitats began by conducting a workshop to introduce the biomimetic design process to all team members and to an advisory panel made up of local experts in shipping, biology, and the Cuyahoga River itself. Following the workshop, the team began the scoping phase by identifying species of transient fish at risk and studying their migration needs and challenges in the channel. Simultaneously, analyses of shipping traffic (including temporal distribution) and
|Green Bulkheads for Cuyahoga River Navigation Channel||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Greenbrier Creek On-Call Stream Restoration Services for North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program|| |
Greenbrier Creek On-Call Stream Restoration Services for North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement ProgramNorth Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program
Alamance and Chatham Counties, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats developed the design for approximately 4,940 feet of stream enhancement (Level I) and over 17 acres of riparian buffer restoration. Additionally, Biohabitats delineated and evaluated approximately 6,300 linear feet of stream and 7.5 acres of wetland that were purchased and conserved by the project. Biohabitats worked with the client to analyze the site and conclude that Enhancement Level I (restoration of dimension and profile) would be preferable on this project, in order to preserve mature hardwood forest that would have been lost if stream pattern was changed substantially. Biohabitats was instrumental in accommodating the presence of beaver in the stream design, working with North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program (NC EEP) to develop and maintain good property owner relationships, proposing an effective control protocol for the invasives on site, working with NC EEP to evaluate the efficacy of implementing Simulated Stream Design on the site, and working with the local Natural Resources Conservation Service to develop a wet ford stream crossing design to implement on the project.
|Greenbrier Creek On-Call Stream Restoration Services for North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Alamance and Chatham Counties, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Greenspring Quarry South Tributary Stream Restoration|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States A large limestone quarry was to be converted into a residential and commercial development. In decommissioning quarry operations, the Maryland Department of the Environment required that a tributary on site be restored. The South Tributary had previously been channelized to prevent flooding and to keep it out of the way of quarry operations. Its restoration required a totally new plan form, cross section and profile. The design had to be scientifically sound and developed in a timely manner so it would not hinder progress of the development. Biohabitats worked closely with the site planners and engineers to obtain the necessary riparian area and alignment for the South Tributary. We also worked closely to establish the proper location and elevations for storm drain outfalls, sewer lines, road crossings and an innovative cold water discharge from the proposed lake. Using comprehensive measurements taken from a reference reach, Biohabitats designed the channel to look and function naturally. Details for natural, in-channel structures such as gradual boulder steps and various downed log features were also developed. Biohabitats teamed with Meadville Land Service (MLS) and Ecological Restoration and Management (ER&M) to provide the construction and planting services. MLS’ attention to detail and ecologically oriented construction practices helped ensure proper installation of the natural log and boulder structures.
|Greenspring Quarry South Tributary Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Greywater Treatment at Hard Bargain Farm|| |
Accokeek, Maryland , United States The Alice Ferguson Foundation’s mission is to connect people to the natural world, sustainable agricultural practices, and the cultural heritage of the Potomac River watershed. The key to this mission is the Foundation’s 330-acre Hard Bargain Farm, which serves as an environmental education center. Programs at the farm provide elementary and middle school students, as well as teachers and environmental educators, with hands-on activities, models, and field studies amid a diverse range of habitats. When the Foundation needed a new education building, they wanted to build one that was aligned with their mission. They opted to pursue Living Building Challenge™ (LBC) certification, the most rigorous standard known for sustainability. Among other requirements, Living Buildings must be self-sufficient for energy and water for at least 12 continuous months. For help in designing a greywater (lightly used water from sinks and showers) system that would achieve these stringent requirements, the Foundation turned to Biohabitats. Carefully harvesting, recycling, and balancing water and nutrients is a key component for Living Buildings, and is often one of the more challenging aspects of LBC certification. Regional regulations are not always in alignment with LBC goals, and therefore collaboration with local regulatory authorities to introduce decentralized water/waste systems and innovation is crucial. At Hard Bargain Farm, although composting toilets are used throughout for handling sanitary wastes with minimal water requirements, the greywater still required treatment. A conventional septic system, originally proposed for managing greywater, was prohibitively expensive due to site soil constraints and a large pumping system needed to deliver water to a suitable drainfield area thousands of feet away from the buildings. Biohabitats designed and permitted a greywater system that provides a low energy solution to safely recharge treated greywater back to the aquifer. The core of the system is a land application subsurface
|Greywater Treatment at Hard Bargain Farm||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Accokeek, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Greywater Treatment/Reuse System for Barrett, The Honors College at Arizona State University|| |
Tempe, Arizona , United States Arizona State University (ASU) is known for its commitment to Sustainability. Having established the first School of Sustainability in the country, ASU expanded with the development of the $130 million LEED-certified campus for Barrett, The Honors College at ASU. Located on ASU’s Tempe Campus, Barrett’s state of the art facilities include academic spaces, social, dining, and recreational facilities, as well as administrative offices and the Dean’s office. Its architecture was designed to accommodate the sun saturated climates of the Southwest and incorporate local materials and regional concrete techniques. The expansion also included the Sustainability House at Barrett, touted as “the most comprehensive living and learning community in the nation devoted to sustainable living concepts. Biohabitats designed a greywater treatment and reuse system for The Sustainability House (campus buildings 7A and 7B). Greywater from building sinks, water fountains, and showers are captured and treated to a reuse standard suitable for irrigation supply. The greywater design flow is 10,000 gallons per day. The onsite greywater treatment and reuse system incorporates an equalization and filtration tank, a recirculating sand filter, irrigation storage tank, pumps, and controls. The system, which helped the project earn its LEED Gold certification, supports the University’s commitment to sustainability and serves as an example for campus housing.
|Greywater Treatment/Reuse System for Barrett, The Honors College at Arizona State University||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Tempe, Arizona, United States||featured-project featured|
|Gulf State Park Lodge & Meeting Center–Ecological & Sustainability Assessment|| |
Gulf Shores, Alabama , United States In the wake of the Deepwater Horizon disaster and the subsequent environmental effects along the Gulf Coast, early restoration funds were made available for planning and development projects that restore and enhance the 6,000-acre Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, AL. This includes the redevelopment of the 1970’s-era lodge and conference facilities that were destroyed by Hurricane Ivan in 2004. This overnight and meeting facility is envisioned as a welcoming place that improves public access to the park’s beaches, trails, freshwater ecosystems, and other natural resources, while serving as a model for context-sensitive, environmentally-friendly, and sustainable coastal development. The Lodge will be located on one of the most unique and sensitive natural resources within the state of Alabama–the Gulf Shores dune system. This dynamic system is the first coastal defense against flooding, sea level rise, and the impacts of major storms. It also provides important habitat for rare and threatened species unique to the Alabama Gulf Shore including the Alabama beach mouse. Working with the owner’s agent, the University of Alabama’s Gulf State Park Project, a Project of the University of Alabama Board of Trustees, Biohabitats provided ecological assessment of the dune system at the lodge site and feedback on the design and development of the Lodge facilities–focusing on promoting ecological health, enhanced dune function, sensitive wildlife habitat needs, and integrated restoration opportunities and best practices.
|Gulf State Park Lodge & Meeting Center–Ecological & Sustainability Assessment||Regenerative Design,||Gulf Shores, Alabama, United States||featured-project featured|
|Gulf State Park Master Plan|| |
Gulf Shores, Alabama , United States In the wake of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, early restoration funds were made available for a master plan to restore and enhance over 6,000 acres of Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, AL. The master planning process aims to create a national model for natural resource restoration and economic revitalization along the historic Alabama Gulf Coast. The goal is for the park to be an international benchmark for economic and environmental sustainability, demonstrating best practices for outdoor recreation, education, and hospitable accommodations. The Park sits at the nexus of some of the most unique and sensitive natural resources within the state of Alabama. The ravaging effects of hurricanes over the last several years have devastated the park’s woodlands, destroyed the dunes, and inundated lowland areas with saltwater. Working with the owner’s agent, the University of Alabama’s Gulf State Park Project, a Project of the University of Alabama Board of Trustees, Biohabitats is providing an ecological assessment of the beach/dune portion of the park–focusing on ecological health, dune function, sensitive wildlife habitats, and integrated green infrastructure and restoration opportunities. Biohabitats is also evaluating sea level rise, as well as the primary and secondary dune movement over time and how that can inform future development at the park. These considerations are integrated into the Park master plan to ensure a holistic approach to environmental management and future sustainable development.
|Gulf State Park Master Plan||Conservation Planning,||Gulf Shores, Alabama, United States||featured-project featured|
|Gwynns Falls Ecosystem Restoration|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States The 66 square mile Gwynns Falls watershed, which lies in the City of Baltimore and Baltimore County, drains to the Chesapeake Bay. Development in this urban watershed has significantly degraded its streams. Biohabitats worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Baltimore to restore 2400 linear feet of Maidens Choice Run, a tributary to the Gwynns Falls that runs through the grounds of two schools. The goal of this project, which followed on the heels of a substantial sewer rehabilitation, was to stabilize the stream’s severely eroded banks while improving terrestrial and aquatic habitat. Biohabitats restoration design reconnected the stream channel with its floodplain and revegetated the floodplain terrace with native plant species. In-stream design techniques included cross vanes, j-vanes, and riffle structures. The design also “daylighted” or unburied 100 linear feet of piped stream to reestablish a natural open channel. In addition to having restored function and stability, the stream is now enjoyed, studied, and celebrated by area students.
|Gwynns Falls Ecosystem Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Gwynns Falls Tributaries at Gwynnbrook Avenue Stream Restoration|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States Gwynns Falls, a 25-mile long stream that empties into the Patapsco River in Baltimore City, was identified by the state as impaired by nutrients, sediments, bacteria, and impacts to biological communities. In an effort to mitigate erosion, reduce sediment yield, protect sanitary lines, and reduce bacteria loads, the Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability (DEPS) undertook efforts to improve the quality of the stream system. Chronically eroding stream banks, an exposed sanitary sewer line and manholes, and a piped section of channel along two Gwynns Falls tributaries made the site a prime candidate for restoration. Operating under an EPA consent decree, DEPS turned to Biohabitats for help in restorating these first-order tributaries Biohabitats began by conducting a fluvial geomorphologic assessment, hydrologic and hydraulic analyses, sediment transport analysis, geotechnical investigations, water quality analysis, and ecological assessments. Informed by the studies, the team then applied a natural channel design approach to return stability, habitat, and ecological function to the degraded tributaries. To inform the community, seek input, and garner support for the project, Biohabitats met with the residential property owners at the site to discuss findings and the restoration design approach. The restoration construction, which was supervised by Biohabitats, was completed in 2010. Subsequently, Biohabitats was contracted to evaluate the site and develop additional bank stabilization measures and channel cross section modification along one residential property to mitigate bank retreat.
|Gwynns Falls Tributaries at Gwynnbrook Avenue Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Gwynns Falls-Leakin Park Forest Management Plan|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States Baltimore’s Gwynns Falls–Leakin Park (GFLP) is one of the largest urban forested parks in the eastern U.S. Though it began in 1901 as a small pocket park for residents of the city’s west side, it has since grown to span nearly 1000 acres. It is now home to an abundance of natural, cultural, and historical features and a number of outdoor education facilities. As in many urban parks, human and natural disturbances have hindered native forest regeneration, resulting not only in habitat and biodiversity loss, but also in changes to forest succession, soil microbiology, plant-animal relationships, and hydrologic and fire regimes. As part of its mission to safeguard Baltimore’s tree canopy, and in an effort to chart a course for a resilient forest park system, the City’s Department of Recreation and Parks turned to Biohabitats for help in crafting a plan to guide future forest management actions. After reviewing all existing information related to the biology and landscape ecology of GFLP, Biohabitats began by conducting a forest assessment to determine forest composition/diversity, forest regeneration, invasive species presence and soil impacts. This involved using the US Forest Service’s NED-3 forest ecosystem decision support software to collect forest stand data from over 200 sampling locations. The Biohabitats team then mapped and analyzed the data to help determine forest conditions, both quantity and quality, and identify associated management needs. Based on the analysis, Biohabitats will recommend restoration and management strategies and techniques to improve species diversity, reduce negative impacts, and improve overall forest health and resiliency. The Gwynns Falls-Leakin Park Forest Management Plan will not only provide the City with an assessment of current conditions and a plan for long-term sustainability to support abundant species/age diversity and ecological services; it will also strengthen GFLP’s resilience to human disturbances and
|Gwynns Falls-Leakin Park Forest Management Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ha’ena State Park Comfort Station|| |
Kaua’ i, Hawaii , United States The Ha’ena State Park is the gateway to the famed Nā Pali trail along Kauai’s northern shore. The need to accommodate the popular park’s increasing number of visitors necessitated improvements to the park’s comfort station and existing sewage system. The site is ecologically, culturally, and historically significant, as it was home to a native Hawaiian settlement between l000 AD to 1800 AD. Hawaiian culture is, and has always been, tied to water; thus the protection of the site’s natural resources and water quality were of utmost importance. Design challenges included the installation of a system on a culturally sensitive site, elevation considerations to ensure gravity flow, and adherence to setbacks that protect the natural wetlands on site. In addition, power is not available at the site and solar power was ruled out due to vandalism concerns. Biohabitats, in collaboration with Strategic Solutions, Inc., designed and permitted a zero-energy system which includes a new primary tank, subsurface-flow constructed treatment wetlands, and a groundwater infiltration gallery. Native Hawaiian plants were used within the constructed wetlands cell. With no moving parts, the system is entirely power free. The new, 2,100 gallons-per-day system not only improves the quality of water that is discharged to the environment, but it shifts treatment and disposal components away from the historic burial grounds located on the site.
|Ha’ena State Park Comfort Station||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Kaua’ i, Hawaii, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hanon Crater Restoration|| |
Jeju Island , Korea, Republic of The Hanon Maar Crater, on the Republic of Korea’s Jeju Island, was formed by volcanic activity millions of years ago. The crater originally held a volcanic lake protected by steep forested walls. Beginning about 500 years ago, humans converted the crater to agriculture, draining the lake with ditches and lowering a section of the crater rim to allow water to escape the basin. Today the native forest is largely gone from the crater and it hosts citrus groves and rice cultivation. Biohabitats was contracted to present a restoration master plan for returning the crater to its predisturbance state. The restoration master plan included three key elements: restoring the damaged crater wall, restoring the lake to its historical size, and revegetating the entire crater with indigenous plants. Biohabitats created a plan with several alternative solutions to the problem of retaining the lake water, ranging from an earthen dam to a complete, terra-formed reconstruction of the original crater wall. This ambitious restoration project came to international attention when Seogwipo hosted the World Conservation Congress in 2012. After that meeting, the IUCN passed a resolution supporting the restoration. Now that the current low-intensity agricultural use is no longer viable, bringing back the lake and restoring native plants to the crater has the potential to establish the Republic of Korea as a leader in the stewardship of its natural resources.
|Hanon Crater Restoration||Ecological Restoration,||, Jeju Island, Korea, Republic of||featured-project featured|
|Hanson Lakes Wastewater Treatment System|| |
Bellevue, Nebraska , United States The 350-home community of Hanson Lakes was built around a series of small lakes near the Platte River. Over the years, the homes changed from summer to year-round residences. The existing water infrastructure was not designed for year-round use, and pollution from existing leach fields began to infiltrate into the water table. As water quality in the lakes deteriorated and well water began to show signs of pollution, the Health Department encouraged the community to sewer each of the lots. An investigation revealed that the option of transferring waste to the City of Bellevue would be both expensive and without a long-term guarantee of service. The community voted to create a Sewer Improvement District and invest in the necessary infrastructure. Biohabitats partnered with Omaha-based Olmsted and Perry Consulting Engineers, Inc. who designed a small diameter collection system. Biohabitats designed a wastewater treatment system to complement the small diameter sewer system. The new wastewater treatment system now consists of flow splitters, pretreatment tanks, filter tanks, subsurface constructed wetlands, dosing tank, pumps, piping, flow meters, UV disinfection system, control building, and related appurtenances.
|Hanson Lakes Wastewater Treatment System||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Bellevue, Nebraska, United States||featured-project featured|
|Harford County Ambient Station Brentwood Park and Woodland Hills Assessment|| |
Harford County, Maryland , United States Elevated levels of nitrite and nitrate, as well as wet weather spikes in fecal coliform bacteria, had been detected in a tributary that drains residential communities. In an effort to identify homeowner-related sources of the contamination, as well as opportunities to reduce impacts from uncontrolled runoff, Biohabitats is conducting a watershed assessment including both the stream corridor of a tributary to Winter’s Run that drains the Brentwood Park and Woodland Hills communities, and adjacent upland areas. Biohabitats’ investigative approach focuses on analytical analyses of existing data, and rapid and diagnostic field reconnaissance investigations as opposed to performing additional water quality sampling. The diagnostic field investigations upland and within the stream corridor, coupled with a public outreach and education initiative, are aimed at identifying residential behaviors that are likely contributing to the watershed impacts. This rapid field diagnostic approach provides many advantages, including additional NPDES MS4 permit compliance benefits, such as: public education and outreach, public involvement, pollution prevention, and illicit discharge detection and elimination; movement toward implementation of restoration measures that can be credited for NPDES permit requirements; opportunity for an adaptive management approach that recognizes there is likely more than just one primary source; cost effectiveness, compared to analytical monitoring; and more focused and targeted water quality data collection if it is determined that analytical monitoring is desirable.
|Harford County Ambient Station Brentwood Park and Woodland Hills Assessment||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Harford County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hassalo on 8th Wastewater Treatment & Reuse System|| |
Portland, Oregon , United States “NORM is going to change the paradigm of large scale development.” —Kyle Andersen, AIA, LEED AP, Design Principal, GBD Architects Portland’s Lloyd neighborhood is a dense cluster of office buildings with little residential space. The area is served by a combined sewer overflow system, in which rainwater is conveyed along with sewage and ultimately treated as wastewater. Hassalo on 8th is a four-block, sustainable urban development. Pending LEED Neighborhood Development Platinum certification, Hassalo on Eighth boasts the highest level of certification in renewable, clean energy development, green roofs, a bike hub, access to mass transportation, and numerous other eco-friendly technologies and amenities. It is also one of the first urban neighborhoods to treat and recycle its wastewater on site. Biohabitats designed an onsite wastewater system nicknamed NORM (Natural Organic Recycling Machine). This decentralized treatment and reuse system is designed to divert 100% of the wastewater generated in the three new buildings away from the municipal sewer. The project lessens the burden on this public utility, staving off costly repairs and infrastructure expansion, which garnered considerable support from the City as well as the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. It is also a popular sustainability feature on the site. The system, which was designed in collaboration with GBD Architects, Glumac, and PLACE studio, treats 45,000 gallons per day to State of Oregon Class A reuse standards through a series of trickling filters and constructed wetlands. The trickling filters are integrated into the design of the park-like pedestrian corridor at the center of the project and the wetlands are an element of the landscaping. Treated, disinfected wastewater is reused for toilet flushing, running the buildings’ cooling systems, and landscape irrigation. Excess, unused treated wastewater is injected into dry wells for crucial groundwater recharge in a largely impervious urban
|Hassalo on 8th Wastewater Treatment & Reuse System||Cascadia Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Portland, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hassalo on 8th Water Feature|| |
Portland, Oregon , United States Hassalo on 8th, an innovative, four-block, urban redevelopment project that includes a retrofitted office tower and three new, mixed-use buildings. In addition to using innovative, green technologies throughout the site, the developers wanted to create an attractive water feature for the residents of the site’s 637 apartments and visitors to the retail space.Biohabitats water engineers collaborated with the landscape architects at PLACE studio to create an amenity that is both beautiful and consistent with the redevelopment’s focus on sustainability. A 60,000-gallon rainwater cistern collects runoff from the green roof of one of the buildings and feeds it into a two-part water feature that stretches along a pedestrian corridor in the center of the site. The captured rainwater is recirculated through both features, so no potable water is needed for their operation. The North water feature is a narrow, 100 foot-long channel across the plaza from Hassalo on 8th’s wastewater treatment wetlands, which were also designed by Biohabitats. A floating walkway zigzags over the South water feature, a 200-foot-long cascade of open water and lush vegetation. Together, the two sections of the water feature offer a peaceful space for reflection and relaxation in the midst of a dense, urban environment.
|Hassalo on 8th Water Feature||Cascadia Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Portland, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hawthorne Valley Farm Feasibility Study|| |
Harlemville/Ghent, New York , United States Hawthorne Valley Farm, a 400-acre biodynamic farm and creamery, with associated educational and outreach programs. The farm includes a Waldorf School and a farmscape ecology research program. As they plan for future development, the Hawthorne Valley Association wanted to be sure to expand in a way that supports a symbiotic relationship with the land and water in this river valley landscape. To help them achieve this goal, Biohabitats assessed the site’s natural systems and explored wastewater treatment opportunities. Biohabitats’ assessment and planning study focused on wastewater and water cycle assessment, infrastructure design and landscape ecological opportunities for the farm. The team participated in a community visioning process, meeting with members of the community, as well as school staff and faculty. During this community process the team was able to learn and share observations of opportunities that can strengthen the farm’s commitment to a biodynamic landscape, one that promotes a stable balance between the land, plants, animals, and humans, through the onsite production of all energy and nutrients to sustain operations and community life. Biohabitats performed both field reconnaissance as well as desktop data review in order to provide an assessment of existing ecological conditions and identification of opportunities for innovative water and wastewater infrastructure. Key priorities included restoration and preservation of important ecological and hydrologic features in the natural environment, as well as integrated design of the food and farming systems.
|Hawthorne Valley Farm Feasibility Study||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Harlemville/Ghent, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Herbert H. Bateman Center Wastewater Infrastructure|| |
Chincoteague Island, Virginia , United States More than 400,000 people walk through the doors of the Herbert H. Bateman Educational and Administrative Center at the Chincoteague Refuge every year. Operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Center embraces green architecture and sustainable design. Geothermal energy heats and cools the buildings and restroom fixtures are low-flow and waterless. Given the highly sensitive environmental conditions of the Center’s barrier island location, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service sought a wastewater treatment system that would not only meet advanced standards, but also fit into the site’s aesthetics and ecology. Biohabitats designed a contracted wetland system to treat and recycle wastewater. The design incorporated wetlands, a pond, a sand filter (with the appearance of a sand dune), and a water reuse system which feeds into the toilets and fire sprinkler network of the Center. Surplus water is used to support native vegetation in a small water course. Native vegetation in the wetlands includes saltmarsh bulrush, sofstem bulrush, broad leaved cattails, salt grass, yellow iris, saltmarsh mallow, arrow arum, smooth cordgrass, and salt meadow hay. The final product is a beautiful facility that won the Department of the Interior’s 2003 Federal Energy and Water Management Award.
|Herbert H. Bateman Center Wastewater Infrastructure||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Chincoteague Island, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hinckley Stables Stream Restoration|| |
Hinckley Township, Ohio , United States Along the “emerald necklace” of nature preserves that encircle Greater Cleveland, at the southern end, where a pendant would hang, sits the 2,682-acre Hinckley Reservation. In addition to a 90-acre lake and its network of glacial ledges, the reservation features Hinckley Stables, where horses from Cleveland Metroparks’ mounted ranger unit had been kept. When a small, ephemeral stream that flows through one of the stables’ pastures developed a severe headcut that began migrating upstream and contributing sediment to a downstream tributary that supports a population of State threatened brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis), the Cuyahoga Soil and Water Conservation District and Cleveland Metroparks turned to Biohabitats for help. For this design-build effort, Biohabitats crafted a restoration design that aimed to stabilize the headcut and restore the pasture to forest. Rather than relying on costly materials that need to be brought to the site, the design adaptively re-uses ash trees previously decimated by the emerald ash borer and boulders from an old farm road structure, to stabilize banks and provide instream and terrestrial habitat. These materials were also repurposed to create a log-step bio-engineering structure that addressed the headcut, while invasive species were removed and replaced with vernal pool habitat. Biohabitats worked closely with Cleveland Metroparks’ Watershed Volunteer Program, to train and coordinate volunteer efforts to harvest and later install native willow and dogwood live stakes, as well as, potted native trees and shrubs that will stabilize the banks of the stream and restore the pasture while enhancing both aquatic and terrestrial habitat.
|Hinckley Stables Stream Restoration||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Hinckley Township, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hinkle Point Pizza Hut Natural Wastewater Treatment|| |
Shell Knob, Missouri , United States Hinkel Point Pizza Hut needed improvement to its existing on-site wastewater treatment system because it was not meeting the Department of Natural Resources permit specifications for the biochemical oxygen demand rate. The modifications that were made incorporated the following treatment elements: - Primary treatment tanks (existing tanks with minor modifications) - Constructed wetlands with optional recirculation - Intermittent sand filter - Disinfection system and associated pumps - Phosphorous removal system The system has been operation since 2004, processing 2,000 gallons per day, with water quality meeting the required State standards.
|Hinkle Point Pizza Hut Natural Wastewater Treatment||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Shell Knob, Missouri, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hippo Habitat at Werribee Open Range Zoo|| |
Victoria , Australia Zoos Victora is committed to reducing water consumption while maintaining diverse environments for the animals at its three zoos and providing visitors with immersive experiences. Spanning over three hectares, the Kubu River Hippos Experience in the Werribee Open Range Zoo features eight adult hippos in three separate pools that are connected hydraulically. Biohabitats designed a system to treat the exhibit’s 2,000-cubic-meter pools and the organic waste from the hippos. Recognizing that hippos play a major role in the East African river ecology by providing nutrients for algae eating fish, we considered a design which incorporated an Australian Ecosystem. Working with a local Australian design team and U.S. partners Studio Hanson Roberts, we developed a marsh concept using a 6,000-square-meter wetland which provides treatment and habitat while enhancing the zoo exhibit. Because the treatment is passive, significant capital and energy savings were immediately realized, resulting in more money for animal care and the exhibit. Using low head, high flow pumps water is circulated one time a day through the 6000 m2 wetlands where suspended solids and nutrients are removed. The nutrients and suspended solids provide food for native micro and macro invertebrates and fish that feed on these organisms. The fish, in turn, become food for birds. A portion of the treated effluent water is used for irrigation. Make up water is provided from the Werribee River.
|Hippo Habitat at Werribee Open Range Zoo||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||, Victoria, Australia||featured-project featured|
|Hog Island Ecological Restoration Master Plan|| |
City of Superior, Wisconsin , United States Biohabitats prepared the first ecological restoration plan for one of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) designated Areas of Concern (AOC) in the Great Lakes. Located within the City of Superior, WI, Hog Island was one of the first AOCs to be remediated for contaminated sediment. Using a stakeholder-driven process, Biohabitats led a collaborative and participatory process in developing an ecological restoration plan for Hog Island and adjacent Newton Creek. Biohabitats spearheaded three public workshops; engaged local, state and federal government agencies; and built community consensus on a variety of ecological restoration initiatives. In addition, we developed, hosted, and supported a web-based interface which provided a method of posting all information as indiated by EPA and for receiving input from the general public and stakeholders. The final Ecological Restoration Master Plan provided a framework of specific action items that can be carried out by the City of Superior and various community organizations. These action items included the restoration of native plant communities, aquatic and terrestrial habitat, water quality best management practices, recreation amenities and educational initiatives. The Master Plan also served as a catalyst for fund raising and educating the general public on the importance of Hog Island to the environmental and economic well being of the community.
|Hog Island Ecological Restoration Master Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||City of Superior, Wisconsin, United States||featured-project featured|
|Holts Landing State Park Shoreline Stabilization & Crabbing Pier|| |
Sussex County, Delaware , United States When major erosion along the shoreline of Delaware’s Holts Landing State Park was impacting natural habitats and park infrastructure, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control turned to Biohabitats for help. The popular park is located on tidal shoreline along Indian River Bay. The area varies in width along the shoreline, and includes park facilities and a crabbing pier. Biohabitats began by performing a field investigation and evaluating historic information. Informed by these efforts, the Biohabitats team prepared an engineering report, which included recommended concepts for shoreline stabilization and planning considerations for the style, layout, and location of the crabbing pier. Biohabitats’ restoration design included soil bioengineering techniques which incorporated marsh restoration, dune stabilization grasses, and shrubs. The solution for the shoreline and crabbing pier not only protects the shoreline, but improves fish and wildlife habitat and enhances recreational opportunities and access for park visitors. The team prepared a full package of design and construction documents, provided permitting services, and assisted with bidding and construction administration. The team also provided additional permitting assistance for an offshore stone breakwater.
|Holts Landing State Park Shoreline Stabilization & Crabbing Pier||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Sussex County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Horseshoe Farm Park Master Plan, Natural Resource Management Options Study|| |
Raleigh, North Carolina , United States The City of Raleigh’s Parks and Recreation Department enlisted Biohabitats to help in transforming a historic farm into a nature preserve park. The City appointed a Wildlife Habitat Zone Advisory Team of local experts consisting of university professors, state wildlife agency scientists, NC Natural Heritage Program scientists, the Audubon Society and the Wild Turkey Federation to study the site. This advisory team provided recommendations for the protection and preservation of the site’s natural resources, the creation of a butterfly meadow and restoration of native warm season grass habitat in the existing pasture. Biohabitats was tasked with exploring management options to achieve the vision and recommendations of the advisory team. Using decades of experience in conservation planning, interviews with experts, and scientific literature research, Biohabitats provided management options to guide the transition from farm to nature preserve. Objectives included preserving the floodplain forest on the Neuse River, protecting pristine floodplain wetlands in the forest, creating the butterfly meadow with native species, and converting approximately 55 acres of pasture into native, warm season grass habitat. To improve the site’s ecological sustainability, Biohabitats also provided information regarding the control of invasive plant species, the impacts of deer on native vegetation, and the design and maintenance of low impact trails.
|Horseshoe Farm Park Master Plan, Natural Resource Management Options Study||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Raleigh, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Howard Community College Campus Master Plan|| |
Howard County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats provided integrated stormwater management and ecosystem enhancement planning services for Howard Community College in support of the Campus Master Plan effort being led by Ayers/Saint/Gross Architects and Planners. Using existing electronic data, coupled with an extensive on-the-ground field review of the campus, Biohabitats’ engineers, ecologists, and landscape architects began by developing a sound understanding of the existing ecological conditions and green infrastructure resources of the campus and surrounding areas, examining pre-existing stormwater related infrastructure, key drainage and stormwater management features, potential stormwater retrofit opportunities that provide improved water quality, ecological function, and habitat connections. Biohabitats then explored opportunities to enhance and integrate these assets throughout the campus while also providing the highest level of water quality and quantity controls within the context of expected expansion. An emphasis was placed on “green infrastructure” practices that provide shallow groundwater recharge, volume reduction, and restoration and reconnection of natural landscapes that provide vegetative filtering and uptake of pollutants. The recommended green infrastructure strategies consider fiscal efficiency of treatment measures that optimize treatment capability, ecological function and landscape position. The overall planning approach for this project focused on conservation, stream restoration and retrofitting for BMPs, and sustainable landscape and stormwater management for future development.
|Howard Community College Campus Master Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Howard County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hudson Farm Development Water Infrastructure|| |
Hudson, Alabama , United States Hudson Farm, formerly a cattle and horse ranch, is made up of several parcels of land totaling 2,100 acres. The site is adjacent to an important road that runs through the City of Montgomery, Montgomery County, and the Town of Pike Road. A City of Montgomery Smartcode promotes the development of the property as a new community consisting of a series of neighborhoods which follow a set of prescribed rules based on traditional neighborhood design (TND). The Smartcode proposes that new communities be compact, pedestrian-oriented, and mixed-use, in contrast to the single-use conventional suburban development prevalent in the region. A design charrette was held to plan the future of Hudson Farm. A team of town planners, landscape architects, architects, transportation and civil engineers, and marketing and lifemaking experts was assembled by the town founders, Hudson Land Development Company and Urban Villages, Inc. At the charrette, the founders presented a set of Guiding Principles and Core Values that helped to direct the process. Biohabitats led the design and development of potable and non-potable water supplies, wastewater treatment, stormwater management, water reuse, watershed restoration efforts. Due to the cutting edge nature of this project, Biohabitats helped the State of Alabama write water reuse regulations to allow for this type of development to flourish.
|Hudson Farm Development Water Infrastructure||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Hudson, Alabama, United States||featured-project featured|
|Hudson High School/Tinkers Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
Hudson, Ohio , United States The Cuyahoga County District Board of Health called upon Biohabitats to help restore of approximately 2,000 linear feet of a degraded tributary to Tinkers Creek. The tributary, which flows through the Hudson High School campus, had been channelized, incised, and disconnected from its floodplain. The goals of the project were to improve water quality and aquatic and riparian habitat; dissipate stream energy; minimize erosion and sedimentation; protect existing infrastructure; provide a minimum of 2,000,000 gallons of storage to reduce storm flows. The project also enhances the high school’s Land Lab, a living outdoor classroom. Biohabitats’ design met these goals in a way that maximizes ecological benefits, minimizes disturbance, and inspires and facilitates ongoing stewardship and education. The site was divided into three reaches, each associated with an ecosystem indicative of Ohio’s riparian systems: wildflower meadow, forested wetland, and scrub/shrub emergent wetland.
|Hudson High School/Tinkers Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Hudson, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Indefinite Delivery Contract to Provide Ecosystem Restoration and Environmental Services to Support the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative within the Buffalo, Detroit and Chicago Districts|| |
Indefinite Delivery Contract to Provide Ecosystem Restoration and Environmental Services to Support the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative within the Buffalo, Detroit and Chicago DistrictsU.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Buffalo District
Various locations, Multiple states , United States
|Indefinite Delivery Contract to Provide Ecosystem Restoration and Environmental Services to Support the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative within the Buffalo, Detroit and Chicago Districts||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Various locations, Multiple states, United States|
|Indian Springs School Integrated Design Charrette|| |
Indian Springs, Alabama , United States With its extensive open space, outdoor classrooms, and interactive teaching spaces, the 350-acre campus of the Indian Springs School, originally designed by the Olmsted Brothers in 1950, reflects the school’s motto of “Learning Through Living.” Yet by 2013 the school’s buildings and campus were in need of modernization. The school completed a master plan to guide the development of a forward-looking campus that fosters the growth of educational opportunities and provides the campus community with greater flexibility, inspiration, and connectivity. The first phase of the master plan involved the design of new academic, arts, and dining facilities. Integral to this effort was the desire to integrate the campus with its buildings and introduce students to more exposure, access, and connectivity with the school’s natural resources. The lead architect, Lake Flato, assembled a team of experts to participate in an integrated design charrette with the Indian Springs School staff, faculty, alumni, parents, and students. As the sustainability consultant, Biohabitats helped facilitate the charrette discussions related to land, site, and water, which helped uncover the ecological potential of the site and the unique resources that can be celebrated and enhanced. During the charrette, campus landscape resources were recognized as central to the identity of the school, with special attention to the campus’ lake, wooded trails, and gardens. The opportunity to celebrate native biodiversity in plantings and building orientation was also recognized. Goals emerging from the charrette included the design of a resilient, engaging, native landscape with ecologically responsive stormwater management that is seamlessly integrated with the new buildings.
|Indian Springs School Integrated Design Charrette||Conservation Planning, Regenerative Design,||Indian Springs, Alabama, United States||featured-project featured|
|Integrated Design Services, Master Plan, and Invasive Species Management for Winston Preparatory School|| |
Integrated Design Services, Master Plan, and Invasive Species Management for Winston Preparatory SchoolWinston Preparatory School
Norwalk, Connecticut , United States Formerly a grand 19th century estate, a reformatory school, and a daycare facility, the 13-acre campus of the Winston Preparatory School contains an intriguing mix of derelict buildings, relics, and a spring-fed, concrete-lined, algae-coated swimming pool. When the school acquired funding for a new classroom building, they assembled an integrated design/construction team to help transformWinston’s learning environment into one that not only fostered academic education, but an understanding of the school’s “place” and its role in the ecological health of the region. A series of charrettes with staff, faculty and students yielded the school’s new vision: a state-of-the-art, ecologically sustainable classroom and landscape that would enhance community, local ecology, and student understanding of how water leaving the campus could impact Long Island Sound. Biohabitats performed an ecological inventory and analysis which not only informed siting of physical improvements but identified invasive species and recommended forest management. The site plan located new buildings and paved areas on previously disturbed lands, minimized impervious cover, and addressed stormwater management holistically. The plan also included green infrastructure, such as bioswales, bioretention filters, a dry detention basin, an infiltration gallery, replacement of turf with low-maintenance native plants, and conversion of the algae laden “swimming pool” to a vegetated wet pond BMP. Biohabitats was responsible for all regulatory coordination with the local wetlands board for the conversion of the swimming pool, a regulated waterbody, as well as the associated wetland buffer encroachments. Due to a compressed project schedule, and a move-in date dictated by the start of the school year, construction began with little more than the entitlement drawings required for site plan and building permit approval. Working closely with the construction management team to stay on schedule, Biohabitats’ designers often prepared detailed concept drawings while in the field. With the original design goals and concept in mind, many site details were altered or new details created to reuse vast amounts of rock found during site excavation. The landscape design incorporated over 200 native tree, shrub, grass, perennial and annual wildfl ower species.
|Integrated Design Services, Master Plan, and Invasive Species Management for Winston Preparatory School||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Norwalk, Connecticut, United States||featured-project featured|
|Integrated Natural & Cultural Resources Inventory & Management Plan, Tobyhanna Army Depot|| |
Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania , United States Because military lands and waters often are protected from human access and impact, they contain some of our nation’s most significant remaining large tracts of land with valuable natural resources. One such site is the Tobyhanna Army Depot (TYAD), a 1,293-acre Army installation located on the Pocono Plateau, an area in Pennsylvania known to support a high concentration of rare flora and fauna. When the staff at TYAD needed to update the Depot’s Integrated Natural and Cultural Resources Management Plan (INRMP) to integrate the management of its natural and cultural resources with the military mission, they turned to Biohabitats for help. Biohabitats inventoried and developed a management plan for natural resources while subconsultant AD Marble did the same for cultural resources. Biohabitats began by conducting an inventory of the various aquatic and terrestrial habitats of the installation, describing unique characteristics, identifying sensitive flora and fauna. Inventory methods, specifically selected to minimize impacts on natural systems, included vegetative plot sampling; live trapping for small mammals; motion activated camera trapping for larger mammals; calling surveys and point counts for birds and amphibians; electro-fishing; and active searches for reptiles. Biohabitats was challenged with incorporating these data, including documented populations of State listed rare, threatened and endangered species, into a meaningful planning document that supports the installation’s mission while enhancing and protecting habitat in natural areas. Active management approaches considered in the plan included invasive species controls to restore the native seed bank in Oakes Swamp, nest box programs to increase habitat availability for cavity nesters in the relatively uniform even-aged forest stands of Powder Smoke Ridge, creation of shrub-lands for areas frequently cleared for radar operation, and meadow restorations for the open turf areas not specifically purposed.
|Integrated Natural & Cultural Resources Inventory & Management Plan, Tobyhanna Army Depot||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|InterCounty Connector RC131, RC2, NB1 & NB3 Stream Restoration|| |
Montgomery County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats helped the Maryland State Highway Administration restore four degraded streams in Montgomery County as part of a Compensatory Mitigation/Environmental Stewardship program related to the construction of the state’s Intercounty Connector, an 18-mile highway linking central and eastern Montgomery County with northwestern Prince George’s County. Over the past several decades, Manor Run, Cherrywood Manor, Mill Creek and Rock Creek had suffered severe bed degradation, bank erosion, straightening, encroachment and habitat loss as a cumulative impact of development in the watershed. Biohabitats’ restoration design needed to reduce sediment input into Manor Run, Cherrywood Manor, Mill Creek, and several tributaries to Mill Creek, as well as into their watershed. It also had to raise the elevation of Rock Creek to facilitate anadramous fish passage. In total, the project would restore more than 25,000 linear feet of stream. Having studied the streams for several years, Biohabitats developed restoration plans that reconnected the four streams to their historic floodplains and created a series of weirs to provide resting areas and a more gradual transition for fish passing to the upper reaches of the Rock Creek Watershed. The design greatly reduces sediment loss and vastly improves the overall condition and habitat value of the adjacent floodplain. Biohabitats performed stream assessment, hydrologic and hydraulic modeling, permitting, and design services. The projects involved close coordination with SHA, the Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission, the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and the Maryland Department of the Environment. As part of the review team for SHA, McCormick Taylor provided constructability, erosion and sediment control, and hydraulic modeling review for both projects. The project involved full assessment and design of the entire project
|InterCounty Connector RC131, RC2, NB1 & NB3 Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ivy Creek Stream Restoration|| |
Albemarle County, Virginia , United States Ivy Creek was an incised stream channel that flowed through a large, historically agricultural property recently protected by a Natural Lands Trust Conservation Easement. The property owner was interested in restoring the stream’s degraded conditions and protecting it, along with adjacent lands, in perpetuity. Taking a proactive stance, the Virginia Department of Transportation chose to begin restoring Ivy Creek before needing stream mitigation credits, a move applauded by regulators. Complicating the restoration was the presence of multiple beaver impoundments in and immediately downstream of the project area. Biohabitats’ design, which reconnected the floodplain, stabilized eroding stream banks and improved in-channel habitat, allowed the project to meet its goals without being compromised by the continued presence of the beaver.
|Ivy Creek Stream Restoration||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Albemarle County, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Jamaica Bay Floating Wetlands Wave Attenuator Pilot Project||Biohabitats led the implementation of a range of ecosystem restoration pilot projects within the Jamaica Bay watershed in New York City. The pilot projects were first identified in the Jamaica Bay Watershed Protection Plan, which is focused on cleaning the water of the Bay and restoring ecological habitats. One of the pilot projects implemented by our Joint Venture team, which included partners HDR and Hazen & Sawyer, was a floating wetlands wave attenuator. This innovative ecological technology will be tested to study the efficacy of deflecting and reducing the energy of waves in order to better protect critical wetland shorelines and habitat. Brant Point was chosen as the location for the wave attenuator project, as its shorelines and marshes are actively eroding due to wave energies. Our team developed a wave attenuator design that uses a series of buoyant mats planted with Spartina alterniflora, whose roots are then available to the subaqueous community for habitat purposes. The introduction of an active biological system to the wave attenuator adds many ecological benefits including the ability of the system to assist in the removal of pollutants from Jamaica Bay. The team is using remote acoustic monitoring devices to measure how the attenuators perform in deflecting and reducing the energy of waves, as well as the anticipated decline in erosion along the wetland edge. If the attenuators succeed in diminishing the strength of the waves and slowing the rate of erosion, that information will be used to determine whether oyster beds and other breakwater offshore structures could be planted in similar areas to protect other critical wetland and shoreline areas.||Jamaica Bay Floating Wetlands Wave Attenuator Pilot Project||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Jamaica Bay Oyster Restoration Pilot Project|| |
Queens, New York, New York , United States Biohabitats led the implementation of a range of ecosystem restoration pilot projects within the Jamaica Bay watershed for the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP). The pilot projects were first identified in the Jamaica Bay Watershed Protection Plan, which is focused on cleaning the water of the Bay and restoring ecological habitats. Oysters, which serve as natural water filters, once thrived in Jamaica Bay. Due to overharvesting and other human disturbances, self-sustaining oyster populations are no longer found in the Bay. In an effort to research the potential to restore oyster habitat in Jamaica Bay, Biohabitats and our joint venture partners helped NYCDEP initiate pilot oyster restoration projects in two locations within Jamaica Bay. In October 2010, Biohabitats installed an oyster bed off of Dubos Point in Queens and 12 oyster reef balls in Gerritsen Creek in Brooklyn. The oyster bed was constructed with spat-on-shell to mimic a small reef off the shores of Dubos Point, while the reef balls had been previously set with spat and were placed just off shore in Gerritsen Creek. Three years of comprehensive monitoring and ongoing annual monitoring suggests that the oysters are not only able to survive, but reproduce, improve water quality, and enhance the ecology of the Bay. Laboratory testing also indicated that the oysters were relatively disease-free. Throughout the effort, the team has been coordinating with other organizations and researchers undertaking similar efforts in the New York/ New Jersey Harbor Estuary, and the pilot project is now informing other attempts to restore this significant habitat type to Jamaica Bay.
|Jamaica Bay Oyster Restoration Pilot Project||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Queens, New York, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Jamaica Bay Watershed Protection Plan|| |
Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, New York City, New York , United States When Mayor Bloomberg signed a City Council bill requiring the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to create a watershed protection plan for Jamaica Bay, the City turned to Biohabitats to help lead the efforts. Jamaica Bay is one of America’s most important estuaries. Encompassing the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, a unit of the Gateway National Recreation Area, Jamaica Bay has been important to the cultural and economic development of New York City and the nation for more than 200 years. Jamaica Bay is an estuary within the jurisdictional boundary of New York City, immediately adjacent to the Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens. The 142-square-mile watershed supports one of the most densely populated urban areas in the United States. The effluent from numerous water pollution control plants, combined sewer overflows, and augmented stormwater runoff has severely degraded water quality in the Bay. Land filling and dredging operations has reduced the historic wetland complex by 50%, and the remaining salt marshes are rapidly eroding. Nevertheless, the estuary remains an important ecological, cultural, and recreational resource for the citizens of New York City. Biohabitats was tagged to assist the City with the technical components of the Plan and to build a consensus among a variety of stakeholders to implement multifaceted protection and restoration initiatives. More specifically, Biohabitats’ role included researching the ecological systems in Jamaica Bay Estuary, quantifying impacts, and making recommendations for sustainable ecological restoration and management. We helped organize and lead workshops aimed at addressing both technical issues as well as cultural and regulatory impediments to implementing a fully fledged restoration program. Biohabitats worked with DEP to prepare and assemble the Jamaica Bay Watershed Protection Plan, a guide for future conservation and restoration actions that will return Jamaica Bay to an ecologically rich, diverse and resilient estuary.
|Jamaica Bay Watershed Protection Plan||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|James Farm Preserve Master Plan|| |
Ocean View, Delaware , United States James Farm Ecological Preserve, a 150-acre site long the shore of Delaware’s Indian River Bay, was established to promote environmental preservation, education, and recreation. One of 28 National Estuary Programs around the coastal U.S., the Preserve features mixed hardwood forest, tidal salt marsh, sandy beaches, a saltwater cove, and upland fields. Farmed for generations, the Preserve has more recently seen the restoration of warm season grasslands and upland forests. Having already completed a management plan for the Preserve, the Center for Inland Bays wanted to develop a Master Plan to ensure that future development would be sustainable and cohesive, and would integrate updated facilities, trails, and public access areas with the site’s unique and sensitive ecosystems. The potential effects of sea level rise in the Inland Bays added to the challenge of long-term planning for the Preserve. Working collaboratively with Oasis Design Group whom served as the project’s master planner, Biohabitats developed a series of maps that describe the existing vegetative communities, landscape ecological connections, and the potential effects of sea level rise. The maps informed the master plan, and helped set the stage for an iterative design process and holistic approach to capacity building which seamlessly integrates public access, recreation, ecosystem conservation, stewardship, and education.
|James Farm Preserve Master Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Ocean View, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Jamestown Apartments Stream Restoration|| |
Richmond, Virginia , United States When the Henrico County Department of Public Works decided to start restoring streams in the county, they selected Biohabitats to design their first project. The small, unnamed stream flowed through the Jamestown apartment complex in Richmond. The apartment grounds maintenance was mowing the grass right to the edge of water. The lack of woody vegetation allowed the stream to severely erode its banks, some of which were perilously close to the apartment buildings. Biohabitats designed the restoration of approximately 1,400 linear feet of stream based on natural channel design techniques, but tailored to the urban setting of an apartment complex. The stream’s planform, cross section, and profile were modified to be stable with the current urban hydrology. The design also had to incorporate three road crossings, fourteen storm drain outfalls, and numerous utilities (gas, water, sanitary) crossing the channel. Natural channel stabilization techniques included: rock W-weirs at the road crossing culverts to flush sediments through the culverts to maintain storm flow capacity; soil bioengineering (live branch layering and live staking) to stabilize steep banks; and log vanes to direct storm flows away from channel banks. The fourteen stormdrain outfalls were also restored to function as natural channels. Concrete sluices were replaced with step/pools to slow down storm runoff and protect the stream. Straight, riprap ditches were converted to low-gradient, meandering channels in pocket wetlands to provide water quality treatment. The landscape and planting plan included pedestrian paths with educational signage and native trees and shrubs arranged to give the feel of a park setting. During construction, Biohabitats worked closely with the grading contractor to make field adjustments to the restoration design to accommodate unexpected bedrock and utilities.
|Jamestown Apartments Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Richmond, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Jean Lafitte National Historic Park and Preserve Wetland Restoration|| |
Jean Lafitte National Historic Park and Preserve, Louisiana , United States South Louisiana is a biologically rich area of swampy bayous and marshes that teems with life and history. Unfortunately, this area has been heavily impacted by fossil fuel extraction. Over a period of decades, exploratory access canals were excavated across the region, creating dramatic changes in both the hydrology and ecology of the delta. During canal construction, rich, organic soils were piled in long spoil mounds flanking the sides of the new waterways. Highly organic soils that had taken thousands of years to form were left to oxidize in the sun and were eventually colonized by non-native species such as Chinese tallow tree (Sapium sebiferum). The mounds also disrupted the surface flow of fresh water, resulting in anoxic conditions in many of the canals. The Barataria Preserve, a 20,000-acre swath of marsh and forest south of New Orleans, is a unique component of our national park system that supplies valuable access and exposure to the Louisiana delta ecology. Biohabitats worked with the National Park Service to repair industrial damage to this landscape and restore historic marsh ecology. Our approach involved a challenging logistical operation that required specialty equipment. Floating excavators, or “marsh buggies,” removed invasive tree cover and placed excavated soil back into the canals. Unique specimens and stands of valuable oaks and bald cypress were preserved, creating “tree islands” within the marsh. Upon completion, the final grade of the spoil mounds was at the level of the surrounding marsh, allowing the free movement of water and the eventual recolonization of these sites by emergent native vegetation. Biohabitats completed over four linear miles of marsh restoration within the Preserve and the results are dramatic. Upon the degradation of the spoil mounds, the free movement of fresh water across surface of the marsh is restored and the existing population
|Jean Lafitte National Historic Park and Preserve Wetland Restoration||Ecological Restoration,||Jean Lafitte National Historic Park and Preserve, Louisiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Jefferson Memorial Forest Master Plan|| |
Jefferson County, Kentucky , United States In the southwest part of Jefferson County, Kentucky, at the northern edge of the Kentucky Knobs, over 6,000 wooded acres of steep hills and hollows form Jefferson Memorial Forest. Established in the 1940s as a tribute to veterans, the Forest has evolved into a natural oasis just miles from the commercial and residential developments of Louisville. Biohabitats helped put together a consultant team, headed by architectural firm Jones & Jones, which was selected by Louisville Metro Parks to develop a master plan for the Forest. Biohabitats performed a natural resources overview, examining geological characteristics, soils, watersheds and streams, forest communities, and ecological hubs and linkages. Using GIS data and field observations, team members produced maps and graphics to display information and help guide the formulation of a plan that respects and enhances the ecological significance of this park. The team also presented findings and recommendations to the public, stakeholders and the steering committee. Biohabitats made significant contributions to a master plan that truly focused on the ecological health and stewardship of Jefferson Memorial Forest.
|Jefferson Memorial Forest Master Plan||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Jefferson County, Kentucky, United States||featured-project featured|
|Jennifer Branch Stream Restoration|| |
Carney, Maryland , United States Under an on-call contract with the Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability (DEPS), Biohabitats developed a stream restoration design for over 6,000 linear feet of Jennifer Branch, a tributary to Gunpowder Falls. Biohabitats was selected by Baltimore County to develop this design due to its complexity and numerous site constraints. The project combined two previous stream restoration projects for which preliminary design work had begun but was not completed. Over several decades, Jennifer Branch had experienced bed degradation, bank erosion, straightening, encroachment, and severe flooding as a cumulative impact of development in the watershed. Much of the project was constrained by private properties, sheds, fences, utility poles, sanitary sewer lines, culverts and mature trees. The design drew from Biohabitats’ extensive experience with urban streams to support DEPS’s goals of stabilizing eroding banks, minimizing disturbance to private property, maintaining mature trees, increasing aquatic and riparian habitat, and providing a natural and stable stream system. Specific tasks included detailed fluvial geomorphic field analyses; hydrologic and hydraulic analyses; sediment transport analysis; ecological and vegetative assessments; development of concept design drawings and a design justification report; and preparation of design and construction drawings, specifications, and cost estimate. Other responsibilities included the preparation of regulatory permits, assisting DEPS with public meetings, and construction inspection.
|Jennifer Branch Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Carney, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove: Site & Natural Resource Management Plan|| |
Audubon, Pennsylvania , United States Mill Grove is the historic home of artist naturalist John James Audubon, and the site of a 175-acre bird sanctuary. Located along Perkiomen Creek and the Schuylkill River and designated a historic place on the National Register, the ecologically rich site serves as a true living memorial to the achievements of an American legend. In 2005, as the Center was planning to move forward with plans for a new museum, they wanted to refine a previously crafted, heritage-driven master plan to incorporate a greater focus on Audubon’s conservation mission. To help the Center refine its vision to include ecology, Biohabitats, a key member of a team led by Wallace, Roberts & Todd, helped prepare a site and natural resources management plan that addressed the ecological, heritage, recreational, and educational aspects of Mill Grove. We began by participating in interviews, meetings, and presentations with the Center’s staff, board, stakeholders, and community members. Biohabitats provided field reconnaissance surveys to identify and document the natural resources and ecological processes occurring within the site. Biohabitats also identified and mapped the opportunities and constraints associated with improvements, conservation initiatives, and educational opportunities related to the site’s ecology. The team also provided guidance pertaining to the land use plan, overall site circulation, visual amenities, educational space siting, and trail integration. This included the development of strategies for trail improvements, landscape management, and habitat initiatives, including adaptive management techniques, restoration approaches, conservation initiatives, along with regenerative site design strategies. Biohabitats provided final documentation including methodology, results of data collection, technical surveys, opportunities, and constraints alternatives in addition to the master plan recommendations.
|John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove: Site & Natural Resource Management Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Audubon, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|John Paul Jones Arena Stream Restoration and Daylighting|| |
Charlottesville, Virginia , United States In order to aid the University of Virginia in its efforts to treat runoff from impervious area created by the construction of a new multipupose arena/basketball venue, Biohabitats assisted with the design of bioretention facilities on the arena’s main plaza, water quality swales throughout the main parking area, and a water quality drainage swale along the south side of the arena. Biohabitats also designed the restoration of an unnamed tributary to Meadow Creek along the north side of the arena. This design had to minimize impacts to the existing forested buffer, avoid floodplain wetlands and restore a severely eroded channel. Biohabitats accomplished these goals by raising the invert of the channel, realigning the channel pattern and opening the channel cross section. Raising the thalweg reconnected the stream to its floodplain, which minimized the amount of grading, saved trees and reduced construction costs.
|John Paul Jones Arena Stream Restoration and Daylighting||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Charlottesville, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Joint Society for Ecological Restoration/SETAC North America Technical Workshop–Restoration of Impaired Ecosystems; an Ounce of Prevention or a Pound of Cure|| |
Joint Society for Ecological Restoration/SETAC North America Technical Workshop–Restoration of Impaired Ecosystems; an Ounce of Prevention or a Pound of CureJackson, Wyoming , United States In the spring of 2014, Biohabitats president Keith Bowers was among a select group of experts in the fields of restoration ecology and environmental toxicology invited by the Society for Ecological Restoration (SER) and the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) to collectively define best scientific practices for integrating the practice of ecological restoration with the remediation of contaminated sites. Restoration of aquatic and terrestrial landscapes contaminated by the extraction, energy, and chemical industries, along with land and water contaminated by industrial accidents and neglect, are a high priority. Both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems will potentially become even more imperiled due to a diverse suite of stressors likely to unfold over the coming years. As a result, there is a growing interest to integrate ecological restoration with site remediation activities to ensure that contaminants are fully remediated while simultaneously providing a foundation for restoring full ecosystem functions and processes. There is also interest in utilizing restoration techniques to prevent contamination of ecosystems during extractive or exploratory activities. The workshop aimed to link two areas of study, restoration ecology and environmental toxicology, to begin addressing important questions raised by the integration of ecological restoration and remediation–both preventing contamination during restoration activities and restoring contaminated ecosystems. These include: Will an attractive nuisance be created for life that inhabits a restored area? Can the restoration process have potential to release additional contaminants over time? What baseline should be used in an ecosystem that was altered hundreds of years ago? (This is in addition to some restoration questions about ever-changing baselines and influences of climate change.) Expert participants from both disciplines exchanged ideas and lessons learned, identified key areas of research, and outlined a path forward to go beyond remediation. The workshop produced a series of joint papers published in
|Joint Society for Ecological Restoration/SETAC North America Technical Workshop–Restoration of Impaired Ecosystems; an Ounce of Prevention or a Pound of Cure||Bioworks,||Jackson, Wyoming, United States||featured-project featured|
|Josey Pavilion Wastewater Treatment and Reuse and Stormwater Management|| |
Decatur, Texas , United States The Dixon Water Foundation is a non-profit organization which demonstrates and promotes sustainable land management practices for healthy watersheds in North and West Texas. The Foundation owns four working ranches covering over 15,000 acres. Working with Lake Flato Architects, Biohabitats assisted in designing water systems for the new Josey Pavilion at the Dixon Ranches Leo Unit in Cooke County to conserve and reuse water on the site. This 5,000 sq. ft. meeting and event structure was the first of its kind in Texas to meet the stringent Living Building Challenge (LBC) requirements. LBC requirements include Net Zero Water (all water used on site must come from rainwater harvesting or closed-loop water systems and all treated water must not impact downstream ecosystems or use chemicals) and Ecological Water Flow (all stormwater and building water must be managed on-site). Biohabitats designed a wastewater treatment plant for Josey Pavilion to treat an estimated 1,800 gallons per day. The treatment system includes a subsurface flow constructed wetlands, a recirculating sand filter, and land application. Treated and disinfected effluent is used for irrigation on the site. Biohabitats also designed stormwater conveyance to manage stormwater runoff from the site and buildings. In addition to the site water systems, Josey Pavilion will also generate all of its own renewable energy, building materials will be locally sourced and non-toxic. The Josey Pavilion earned the 2015 Design Award from the Texas Society of Architects, and was recognized as a 2016 Top 10 Project by the American Institute of Architects Committee on the Environment.
|Josey Pavilion Wastewater Treatment and Reuse and Stormwater Management||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Decatur, Texas, United States||featured-project featured|
|Kellogg Creek Tributary Restoration|| |
Lake County, Ohio , United States Kellogg Creek is a primary headwater tributary to the Grand River, the most biologically diverse Lake Erie tributary in Ohio. Headwater streams like Kellogg Creek provide valuable ecological services including wildlife habitat and retention of sediment, water, pollutants and organic matter. Since development began in its watershed, however, Kellogg Creek has experienced increased flooding and erosion, diminishing its capacity to perform these services. In response to residents’ concerns over erosion and standing water, county officials chose this stream as a candidate for restoration and turned to Biohabitats for help. In an effort to engage and inform residents, Biohabitats presented ideas at a community meeting during the concept development phase. Biohabitats solicited input and questions from residents regarding the stream’s function and ultimate appearance. Using input garnered from the community and information gathered during field work, Biohabitats produced three restoration concepts for the tributary. The concepts identified sections of the channel where a buffer of native trees and shrubs would be planted to stabilize eroding banks. Biohabitats also chose strategic locations along the channel to create wetlands where stormwater would be collected and naturally treated. Biohabitats’ concepts also depicted off-channel low impact development stormwater management features such as rain gardens, to be constructed within and adjacent to existing swales in the surrounding neighborhood. The proposed restoration will reduce erosion and flooding, filter pollutants and provide valuable wildlife habitat.
|Kellogg Creek Tributary Restoration||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Lake County, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Kelsey Creek Design-Build|| |
Summit County, Ohio , United States The City of Cuyahoga Falls called upon Biohabitats to restore approximately 1,000 linear feet of degraded Kelsey Creek. This tributary to the Cuyahoga River, which flows through Kennedy Park, was experiencing significant bank erosion and channel downcutting, primarily due to the removal of a downstream dam in 2009. These conditions were not only hazardous to the people visiting the park and were aesthetically unappealing, but limited the biological communities and ecological services provided by the stream. This downcutting also exposed gas lines and threatened a sanitary sewer line that runs both parallel to and under the stream channel. This project restored approximately 1,000 feet of degraded Kelsey Creek in Kennedy Park. Ultimately the stream can become an environmental education centerpiece for an adjacent school and in the future Bicentennial Arboretum. The restoration rehabilitated the stream through slightly raising the channel invert to reconnect the channel to existing floodplain benches, making minor adjustments to the alignment to protect the sewer line and adjacent ball fields, excavating floodplain benches where feasible, and grading some eroding banks to a stable angle. This restoration has established native riparian vegetation on both stream banks and limited mowing to take advantage of the benefits provided by a natural forest buffer to slow overland flow, process nutrients and sediment from the channel, and eventually provide shading and woody debris to the channel. Construction was completed in August of 2013 with a volunteer planting completed with students from the adjacent Schnee Learning Center in November of 2013.
|Kelsey Creek Design-Build||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Summit County, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Kelsey Creek Restoration Concept|| |
Summit County, Ohio , United States
|Kelsey Creek Restoration Concept||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Summit County, Ohio, United States|
|Kenilworth Marsh Design-Build Tidal Wetland Restoration|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States In 1989, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) recognized the need to coordinate a multi-agency effort to restore the Kenilworth Marsh system to improve its productivity and water quality functions within the watershed. The project was a cooperative effort by the Washington D.C. Department of Public Works, the National Park Service, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the COG. Biohabitats conducted a historical and environmental assessment to identify key challenges in restoring the marsh and developed detailed plans to restore approximately 30 acres of tidal freshwater wetlands. Biohabitats researched and characterized existing and historical conditions of the marsh for four periods from 1890 to the present. Biohabitats monitored the ecological and physical conditions within the marsh relative to human influences so that a reasonable restoration goal/design could be established for the remaining phases of the project. Biohabitats then devised a conceptual restoration plan based on these findings. Biohabitats conducted two charettes to review data, solicit alternative ideas and solutions, and develop a unified goal and implementation strategy. Biohabitats developed detailed grading plans, planting plans and plant specifications for the experimental restoration construction. Restoration included bioengineering techniques such as “brush fences,” the use of dead plant material for structural stabilization for the short term and live plant material for the long term. After implementation, physical and biological monitoring was conducted for one year. Based on the documented success, Biohabitats developed the final restoration design and specifications and managed construction for the Phase III full-scale restoration.
|Kenilworth Marsh Design-Build Tidal Wetland Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Kent Dam River Restoration|| |
Kent, Ohio , United States A 1999 TMDL study conducted by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA) identified water quality problems in the Cuyahoga River behind Kent Dam in the City of Kent, Ohio. As a member of a consultant team, Biohabitats conducted a feasibility study to evaluate alternatives to meet water quality objectives in the TMDL report while also addressing concerns raised by the Kent community. After developing a concept to modify the Kent Dam/Dam Pool and restore the Cuyahoga to a free flowing reach alongside the dam, Biohabitats participated in the preparation of final design and construction documents. The river flows through this channel to satisfy OEPA aquatic habitat and fish passage criteria. Biohabitats’ design includes opportunities for kayak/canoe passage through the stretch of river and bank revegetation upstream of the dam. Construction for the Kent Dam restoration project was completed in early 2004 satisfying all initial OEPA objectives and providing a center of gravity for urban renewal in the town of Kent, Ohio.
|Kent Dam River Restoration||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Kent, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Keya Wakpala (Turtle Creek Development) Master Plan, Phase I Plan, and Engineering Assessment|| |
Rosebud Sioux Tribe Reservation, Mission, South Dakota , United States The need for affordable, well-built, and sustainable housing within the Rosebud Indian Reservation, home to the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, a sovereign Native Nation, is great. The area is rich in both natural beauty and cultural heritage, and though the community has a deep history of connection to its landscape, these attributes have been challenging to integrate into new development projects. With a growing population and a deep interest in regenerative design, the tribe is adopting a new approach. In 2012, the Rosebud Economic Development Corporation (REDCO) took charge of nearly 590 acres of tribally controlled trust lands with the goal of expanding development of tribal assets while also addressing multiple socio-economic issues faced by the local population, including the loss of traditional culture. As part of a team led by Blue Star Studio, Biohabitats is helping REDCO realize its vision for a mixed-use housing development known as Keya Wakpala (“turtle creek” in the Lakota language.) Guided by Lakota principles such as mutual respect, self-sufficiency, and family, the master plan for Keya Wakpala aims to create economic opportunity as well as resilient, safe, affordable, and appealing housing for the community. In addition to many commercial and community facilities, the plan also includes sustainable agriculture, onsite wastewater treatment and protection, and enhancement of habitat within the existing wetlands. As the lead engineering firm on the project, Biohabitats performed preliminary studies related to site, water, and ecology, and met with Tribal representatives to gather feedback on the type of infrastructure they envisioned as desirable and appropriate to the place. Alternatives for suitable–and sustainable–wastewater treatment and stormwater management approaches were selected and evaluated, with the preferred options developed to a concept level. The findings of these studies were used to help REDCO gather community feedback and secure federal funding for the development.
|Keya Wakpala (Turtle Creek Development) Master Plan, Phase I Plan, and Engineering Assessment||Conservation Planning, Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Rosebud Sioux Tribe Reservation, Mission, South Dakota, United States||featured-project featured|
|King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center Integrated Water Systems|| |
Riyadh , Saudi Arabia King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center(KAPSARC) is located in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia’s capital and largest city. Riyadh, located in the center of the Arabian Peninsula on a large plateau, has experienced very high rates of population growth,from 150,000 inhabitants in the 1960s to approximately five million people today. The project is located on 200 hectares between the outskirts of Riyadh and King Khalid International Airport (KKIA), just north of the proposed Princess Nora Bint Adulrahman University. The project is divided into two zones: 1) Competition Zone and 2) a mixed use, but primarily residential development. The Competition Zone will house the energy and environmental research complex. Saudi Aramco has contracted the services of HOK to develop the Master Plan for KAPSARC. Biohabitats has been retained by HOK to assist in the development of the project’s integrated water systems including water supply, stormwater, wastewater, and water reuse systems. The senior engineering staff at Biohabitats worked closely with the HOK team to provide the best possible solutions for sustainable water infrastructure.
|King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center Integrated Water Systems||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Riyadh, Saudi Arabia||featured-project featured|
|Kingman Lake Wetland Restoration|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States Biohabitats provided ecological planning and design services for an open-end contract with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District Planning Division to restore wetlands in the watershed and enhance aquatic habitat in several tributary streams of the Anacostia River. The restoration of the Anacostia River was the largest urban waterway restoration project in the country. Biohabitats’ responsibilities included analysis of a 120-acre tidal embayment (Kingman Lake) on the Anacostia River. The project involved a comprehensive inventory and analysis of existing conditions including: monitoring of biological and geomorphological conditions; high, low, and mid-marsh plant communities; water quality monitoring and analysis; and sediment transport and deposition. Design tasks addressed measures to increase terrestrial and aquatic habitat, enhance water quality, investigate the use of dredge material to create mid - high marsh and upland vegetative zones. Biohabitats prepared detailed concept designs, cost/benefit analyses of restoration techniques, specifications, final comprehensive conceptual restoration plans and maintenance/monitoring programs. The habitat enhancement project involved agency coordination, negotiation, and design workshops involving regulators, owners, and project sponsors such as the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, Montgomery County and Prince George’s County governments, Maryland National Capitol Parks and Planning, the National Park Service and Maryland Department of Natural Resources.
|Kingman Lake Wetland Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Kunming Eco Communities Innovative Water Systems|| |
KunmingYunnan , China Kunming is the capital of Yunnan Province, located in southwestern China. The city is both a political and cultural center in the province, and is home to universities, museums, galleries and significant educational institutions. The city developed in a highly desirable geographic location, situated approximately 2,000m above sea level among limestone hills, north of Lake Dian. Because of its year-round temperate climate, Kunming is often called the “Spring City” or “City of Eternal Spring”. The city is projected to double in size by 2010 to accommodate approximately eight million people. Kunming’s transport links to Southeast Asia and elsewhere, particularly its air links, are steadily expanding, with direct routes already existing to all major Chinese cities, most major Southeast Asian cities and some major cities in Japan and South Korea. Growth at this scale has caused many interesting planning challenges and the opportunity for both western and eastern design professionals to collaborate. SWA, a highly respected landscape architecture and planning firm, retained Biohabitats to assist with their planning efforts for the Kunming Eco Communities. The Eco Communities are an exceptional example of ecological planning and development in the region. SWA crafted a master plan based on a watershed planning approach. Such an approach contains development in appropriate areas and restores watersheds and forest in the process. The approach is often referred to as “regenerative development.” Biohabitats contributed to the master planning effort with the development of stormwater details, stormwater modeling, a water balance report, and preliminary engineering. Conceptual and preliminary engineering considered 2,500 units of homes and apartments proposed for the development. The master plan offered design solutions that honored water at each step. A water balance provided the framework for examining the flows into and out of the various water treatment and reuse systems. Rainwater harvesting from building
|Kunming Eco Communities Innovative Water Systems||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Kunming, Yunnan, China||featured-project featured|
|La Barbaria Ranch Stormwater Management|| |
Santa Fe, New Mexico , United States La Barbaria is a 400-acre historical ranch nestled against the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in La Barbaria Canyon. Its buildings date back to the early 1800s. A seasonal stream, along with dense vegetation including willows and cottonwood trees, runs the entire length the property. The stream not only creates year-round habitat but conveys rainfall during 100-year storm events from the 3.2-square-mile watershed to two small ponds. Over time, the ponds had become filled with sediment, which reduced their detention capacity. To help LaBarbaria devise a sustainable water management solution, Biohabitats excavated both ponds to remove the debris and sediment, and replanted the area with native vegetation and ornamentals (water lilies). Water control structures, which had been destroyed in a 1988 flood event, were redesigned and rebuilt to handle a 1000 cfs storm event.
|La Barbaria Ranch Stormwater Management||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lafayette College Green Infrastructure Master Planning Guidelines|| |
Easton, Pennsylvania , United States Biohabitats partnered with Ayers/Saint/Gross to create master planning guidelines for Lafayette College in Easton, PA. After analyzing the campus ecological, stormwater drainage, and landscape management issues, Biohabitats recommended a variety of sustainable solutions to incorporate into the College’s master planning efforts. These solutions included conversion of underutilized and difficult-to-maintain turf areas to native vegetation, and the installation of rain gardens, edible/agricultural gardens and seating/gathering areas. Analysis revealed that turf conversions would reduce the carbon footprint from mowing, lessen irrigation needs, and reduce overall maintenance efforts. For well-used turf areas, findings recommended sustainable management practices such as integrated pest management to reduce pesticide and herbicide use. To alleviate flooding and filter stormwater draining into the adjacent Bushkill Creek, Biohabitats suggested a multilevel stormwater management approach utilizing green roofs on all proposed new buildings, curb extensions along flood-prone roads to divert and filter water through vegetated swales, and rain gardens. Restoring forest buffers and the Bushkill Creek corridor are additional project elements recommended to improve water quality and enhance recreation opportunities.
|Lafayette College Green Infrastructure Master Planning Guidelines||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Regenerative Design,||Easton, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Laird Acres Woodland Restoration and Design|| |
Alexandria, Virginia , United States Recognizing the ecological, educational and cultural value of a 35-acre woodland on its campus in Alexandria, Virginia, Episcopal High School turned to Biohabitats to develop a plan for its protection, restoration and full integration into the campus infrastructure and community. Biohabitats mapped and characterized the vegetative complex, identified the primary ecological drivers and threats to the forest, quantified the economic functional value of the woodland and developed a comprehensive management plan. Episcopal High School subsequently contracted with Biohabitats to design and construct a mile long, organic substrate, walking and cross-country trail through the woodland. Biohabitats also created a planting plan for the eastern gateway entrance to Laird Acres and a windbreak planting plan for the western forest edge. As invasive species were identified as a major threat to the native biodiversity, Episcopal High School has contracted with Biohabitats to implement suppression treatments. A phased, selective approach was utilized by Biohabitats during 2007 and 2008 to address the invasive plant understory. An adaptive monitoring program was put in place to assess changes in the plant composition resulting from these interventions. Episcopal High School is currently evaluating curriculum modifications suggested by Biohabitats to maximize the educational potential associated with this unique campus asset.
|Laird Acres Woodland Restoration and Design||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Alexandria, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lake County Stormwater Quality Best Management Practices Manual|| |
Lake County, Ohio , United States Lake County, one of the first counties in Northeast Ohio to have established a Stormwater Management Department, retained Biohabitats to assist them with the development of a Stormwater Best Management Practices (BMP) Manual for land development activities within the County. Biohabitats’ first task was to develop and organize an overall framework for the manual, including sections on water quality BMPs specifically applicable to the physiographic setting of Northeast Ohio. Biohabitats’ overall approach for developing the framework for the manual was to collect and review existing stormwater management manuals from other local jurisdictions throughout the Midwest and east coast, and then to develop a list of recommended water quality BMPs that are applicable to Lake County’s geologic setting, prevailing weather patterns, and land development activities. From this framework, Lake County directed Biohabitats to develop the first three sections of the manual, which entailed developing and presenting design guidance for bioretention practices, swales, and filter strips. These sections present streamlined, straightforward guidance on designing the BMPs for unique conditions found throughout Lake County. For each BMP, a detailed description is provided along with possible application in various settings, such as residential neighborhoods, commercial areas, and transportation land uses. Both concept graphics and photos of actual practices are used throughout the manual sections to illustrate potential application as well as specific design elements. Biohabitats paid particular attention to tailoring the sections to local conditions in Lake County – such as design adaptations for cold weather and snow considerations and local native plants. In addition, the sections present design variants to account for variations in geology, soil type, and depth of groundwater and bedrock found throughout the County. Several useful appendices were developed to facilitate design and plan review, including plan review checklists, construction specifications, typical construction sequencing, and construction inspection checklists. Finally, recognizing
|Lake County Stormwater Quality Best Management Practices Manual||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Lake County, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Land Stewardship Plan for Stratton Open Space|| |
Colorado Springs, Colorado , United States Like many municipalities along Colorado’s Front Range, Colorado Springs is struggling to maintain high quality open space areas amidst increased visitor use. Located on the City’s central-western edge, Stratton Open Space is described by a local biologist as, “. . . one of the most biologically diverse, ecologically significant, and beautiful pieces of land along the entire Front Range.” With a foundation of unusual geologic features, it supports high plant and animal species diversity, and is easily and frequently enjoyed by the people of Colorado Springs. The City manages the property with a commitment to maintain it in accordance with the terms and conditions of a conservation easement. The easement covers 300+ acres of foothills grassland, foothills shrubland, and ponderosa pine forest. Challenges include invasive species, erosion, wildfire, and stressed native vegetation and habitat. Biohabitats helped develop a Landscape Stewardship Plan to guide the management and protection of this unique site With increasingly overburdened budgets and human resources, the City needed open space management objectives and actions that would be practical, specific, and achievable. After working with the City to craft a vision for the site, Biohabitats developed a management approach based on six specific goals to enhance and preserve native ecosystems and wildlife diversity, as well as visitor enjoyment. The goals, each with specific objectives and action items, include: maintenance of wetland, grassland, and riparian areas; reduction of wildfire risk; control of noxious weed species; control of erosion along trails; science-based management of bird and wildlife species; and maintainance of positive visitor experiences.
|Land Stewardship Plan for Stratton Open Space||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lefthand Creek Restoration|| |
Boulder County, Colorado , United States In the fall of 2013, a severe storm dumped 10-20 inches of rain along Colorado’s northern Front Range, causing severe flooding in the foothills, and wiping out Lefthand Canyon Road, the main road leading in and out of the mountains northwest of Boulder. The road follows the path of Lefthand Creek, a stream which begins on Niwot Mountain, runs through a canyon, and flows onto the plains, where it joins St. Vrain Creek and ultimately the South Platte River. During the storm, Lefthand Creek suffered extreme erosion, deposition, and habitat degradation. Working with AECOM, Biohabitats helped the Central Federal Lands Highway Division of the U. S. Department of Transportation enhance the resilience of both the road and creek. While AECOM led the effort to relocate the roadway further from the creek, Biohabitats developed a design to restore stability and habitat to nearly 2.5 miles of the creek and its floopdlain. Biohabitats began by conducting an assessment of the entire project reach and prioritizing restoration reaches. Despite the challenges of working in a canyon with limited floodplain area and an adjacent roadway, Biohabitats recognized many opportunities to increase the floodplain and incorporate aquatic habitat features, such as riffles, pools, and woody debris, which had been removed by the flood. Biohabitats produced 30% construction plans and worked closely with the grading contractor to make adjustments to the channel design during construction.
|Lefthand Creek Restoration||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Boulder County, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lehigh University Forest Sustainability & Carbon Mitigation Study|| |
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania , United States As an educational institution, Lehigh University recognizes the unique responsibility and opportunity it has to lead the region in addressing the challenges associated with global climate change. Blessed with both a mature landscape tree cover and a legacy forest of over 600 acres, the University wished to understand the potential carbon mitigation benefits associated with this dynamic resource. In pursuit of this objective, Biohabitats performed a forest inventory that quantified both the current level of carbon stored in tree biomass and the annual sequestration rate resulting from tree growth. As properly sited landscape plants can have a significant impact on building energy use and the subsequent emissions of greenhouse gases, Biohabitats also quantified the impact of the landscape tree canopy on avoided emissions of atmospheric carbon. In order to assure that this asset continues to provide a net positive impact on greenhouse gas levels, Biohabitats determined the key ecological threats to forest sustainability at Lehigh and provided recommendations for remedial interventions. Biohabitats also identified opportunities for forest enhancement and the greater integration of the woodland into campus life. Managing the campus tree cover for multiple benefits helps assure the University the greatest return on its investment in forest conservation.
|Lehigh University Forest Sustainability & Carbon Mitigation Study||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Leonardtown Wharf Living Shoreline|| |
Leonardtown, Maryland , United States Leonardtown Wharf was an exciting redevelopment enterprise for Leonardtown, MD, the County seat of St. Mary’s County. The town was designated as one of the first Priority Places projects, a program supported by State government that selects model projects to receive additional State investment and implementation assistance as a part of Maryland’s vision for smart growth. The Leonardtown Wharf project included adaptive reuse of a brownfield industrial/commercial site. The project involved a waterfront park with a public promenade developed along with adjacent residential and commercial development. It will have future dock facilities for boating access and kayak/canoe launching. The site is in a sensitive environmental area along Breton Bay, a tributary of the tidal Potomac River and the Chesapeake Bay. It is within the State’s designated Critical Area requiring extensive natural resource protection measures including native vegetation planting and water quality improvement measures. Biohabitats assisted with the native vegetation planting plan for the site landscaping and our work was crucial to the project being approved by the State Critical Areas Commission. Biohabitats developed a wetland mitigation plan to compensate for minor impacts to existing degraded shoreline wetlands. The tidal wetlands designed by Biohabitats included marsh areas with native plants and are connected to existing wetlands. Biohabitats’ incorporation of the wetland design into the overall project plans showcased these important wetlands for observation from a boardwalk. It also provided an environmental education opportunity to be highlighted with interpretive signs.
|Leonardtown Wharf Living Shoreline||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Leonardtown, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Liberty Lake Enhancement|| |
Salt Lake City, Utah , United States Utah’s oldest and most prominent park, Liberty Park has been a popular retreat for Salt Lake City’s people, providing critical green space in the city for more than 130 years. Liberty Lake occupies nearly a quarter of the Park’s 100 acres. In 2010, while the lake served as a catchment basin for Red Butte Creek, it suffered severe impacts from an oil pipeline spill in the creek. Biohabitats helped the Salt Lake City Parks and Public Lands Department restore vitality to the degraded lake by establishing a native, emergent wetland and willow shrubland around its edge, creating floating wetlands, and improving the vegetative composition of an existing island. Community input, gathered through a series of public meetings, informed the restoration design to ensure compatibility with visitor usage. The project also featured interpretive signage created in collaboration with the nearby Tracy Aviary. Biohabitats developed concept renderings and a full bid set including construction drawings and specifications. We also assisted the City during construction by providing construction oversight services. Construction and plant installation was completed in the summer of 2014. The new wetland system not only adds wildlife habitat and helps clean water in this important urban park; it also provides visitors with a new way to experience and enjoy Liberty Lake.
|Liberty Lake Enhancement||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Salt Lake City, Utah, United States||featured-project featured|
|Library Square Stormwater Retrofit Design-Build|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States Behind one popular branch of Baltimore’s Enoch Pratt Free Library is a 1.1-acre wedge of green space that is surrounded by blocks of pavement and urban development in every direction. Known as “Library Square,” the land sits directly atop Harris Creek, a buried stream that conveys a tremendous amount of stormwater toward Baltimore’s Inner Harbor when it rains. This stormwater had been the cause of flooding in the neighborhood, and a major source of pollution and trash to the Harbor, which empties into the Chesapeake Bay. When Blue Water Baltimore, in partnership with Banner Neighborhoods (and Friends of Library Square), won a Chesapeake Bay Trust Fund Grant to create a stormwater management plan to redevelop Library Square, they turned to Biohabitats for help. After meeting with community members and stakeholders, and reviewing previous master plans for the site, Biohabitats crafted a design to maximize stormwater management and improve the park’s aesthetics and sustainability—all while being responsive to the community’s needs for an active and safe open space. The new Library Square Park features native landscaping that promotes urban ecology and creates new habitat for pollinators, and three bioretention basins and a permeable paver plaza area to help manage runoff from the surrounding streets, while maintaining the canopy of mature Linden trees (Tilia americana). The native plantings connect with a larger “pollinator garden” that is planned for the local elementary school, a nearby vacant lot, and the front of the library. Public seating was designed in a style that pays homage to the neighborhood’s Baltimore tradition of “front stoop” culture.
|Library Square Stormwater Retrofit Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Linnean Park Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Design-Build|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States Surprisingly, the neighborhood of Forest Hills, located less than seven miles from downtown Washington, DC, is aptly named. Bounded by Rock Creek Park to the east, the community boasts wooded slopes, expansive lots, and many open spaces. When the District Department of the Environment wanted to restore a degraded perennial stream near one such open space, a playground—they turned to Biohabitats for help. The stream, which was fed from a storm sewer outfall that had become stressed over the decades by increasing development, had become so eroded that it exposed a sewer line and had become a safety hazard. The channel, which was contributing large amounts of sediment downstream, was virtually lifeless, save for a riparian understory filled with invasive species. Biohabitats applied a regenerative stormwater conveyance approach, a stream restoration technique which reconnects a tributary with its floodplain and converts a problem (stormwater) into a resource (groundwater) through infiltration. The design features a “bubbler” device that slowly “leaks” groundwater and storm flows into the restored stream valley which includes a series of cascades, riffles, and shallow pools, as well as native riparian vegetation. The project, which was constructed within a three month period with minimal disturbance to the riparian forest not only improved stormwater management in this highly urban region, but added habitat, beauty, recreational opportunities, and safety to what is now an inviting park for the Forest Hills community.
|Linnean Park Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Little Gunpowder Falls Watershed Management Plan|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States Measuring over 57 square miles and supporting over 153 miles of tributaries, the Little Gunpowder Falls watershed is located along the eastern edge of Baltimore County, Maryland. Spanning both rural and urban land uses, the river eventually makes it way to the Chesapeake Bay. Using a watershed conservation and restoration framework, Biohabitats developed the Little Gunpowder Falls Watershed Management Plan for the Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability. The comprehensive plan not only satisfied National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System obligations, but provided the County with a blueprint for balancing future growth and ecological health. The two-year study identified and evaluated non-point source stormwater pollution and stream degradation; determined management measures to reduce non-point source pollution and re-establish stream stability; and provided a watershed restoration framework for the County’s Capital Improvement Program. Engaging stakeholders, including community groups and government agencies with jurisdiction within the watershed, was critical to the development of water quality management strategies. Biohabitats worked to achieve consensus among the various competing stakeholder interests throughout the planning process.
|Little Gunpowder Falls Watershed Management Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Little Patuxent Public Pond Retrofits|| |
Anne Arundel County , United States As part of its efforts to meet Chesapeake Bay TMDL and local NPDES MS4 requirements, the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works sought to develop a new generation of stormwater pond retrofits that would achieve higher levels of nutrient reduction while also creating a recreational amenity, enhanced wildlife habitat, and greater public acceptance and demand for these facilities. Biohabitats, in a joint venture with Century Engineering, helped the County evaluate, prioritize, and develop schematic stormwater pond retrofit designs in the Little Patuxent Watershed. The evaluation process began with field investigations, visual assessments, and natural resources inventories of all nine existing stormwater ponds in the watershed. The team also compared and evaluated as-built drawings and available computations. Site investigation and retrofit options included upland considerations such as alternative/additional best management practices like parking lot retrofits, bioretention bump-outs, and bioswales. The team then developed pond retrofit ranking protocol for the County with criteria that included drainage area characteristics, existing pond and site conditions, ownership, and retrofit feasibility and requirements. The ranking protocol was then applied and the top ranked ponds were moved through the retrofit concept development phase. Of the remaining ponds, two were deemed unsuitable for retrofitting, while maintenance and further site investigation were recommended for three. Schematic designs prepared for the four top ranking retrofit sites are currently in design development. Once constructed, the retrofitted ponds are expected to gain Chesapeake Bay TMDL and NPDES MS4 credit approvals.
|Little Patuxent Public Pond Retrofits||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Anne Arundel County, United States||featured-project featured|
|Little Sugar Creek Stream and Floodplain Restoration|| |
Charlotte, North Carolina , United States Biohabitats provided Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services with turn-key services to design North Carolina’s first urban wetland/water quality basin Best Management Practices (BMP) in the headwaters of Little Sugar Creek. This degraded, urban stream had been impacted by channelization and the encroachment of development upon the floodplain. The team’s approach to improving water quality involved the restoration of Little Sugar Creek, and the creation of a series of floodplain riparian wetlands using a natural systems approach. Key components of this 2,000 linear foot project included an aggressive schedule, the need for a creative and innovative BMPs, and communication of the benefits of the demonstration project to the public, media, regulators and elected officials. Biohabitats met these challenges by designing an integrated system using natural channel design principles and wetland restoration techniques relying on a self- supporting hydrologic regime. Riparian and wetland revegetation included the use of soil bioengineering and native trees, shrubs and ground cover indigenous to the Piedmont province of North Carolina. Biohabitats’ responsibilities included fluvial geomorphologic assessment, development of concept alternatives, final design and construction documents for the restored stream and floodplain, permitting, and construction oversight.
|Little Sugar Creek Stream and Floodplain Restoration||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Charlotte, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lizard Hill Sand Mine Reclamation|| |
Ocean City, Maryland , United States Biohabitats assessed, designed, and permitted this complex Delmarva Coastal Bays ecosystem restoration project. The project involved the restoration of an exhausted sand mine known as “Lizard Hill,” which had been excavated in an elevated mound between two streams, as well as the restoration of Bishopville Pond, an historic mill pond located downstream from the mine, at the head of tide on Buntings Branch, a tributary to Bishopville Prong. The recipient of an FHWA 2012 Exemplary Environment Initiatives Award, the Lizard Hill project reclaims an abandoned sand mine by creating a 32-acre mosaic of seepage wetlands and reforested buffer areas. The seepage wetlands consist of shallow, aquatic beds established in emergent and floating leaved aquatic plants and more than 8,000 Atlantic white cedar trees. Combined, the hyporheic bed and vegetation create a nutrient processing wetland system fed by surface runoff and groundwater seepage from ditched and drained agricultural fields intensively used in the chicken production industry. The goal is to process the nutrient rich agricultural runoff from adjacent fields by routing flow through constructed, functional wetlands prior to discharging to Buntings Branch, Bishopville Prong and the Saint Martens River, one of the worst nutrient-impacted non-attainment waters in Maryland’s Coastal Bays Region. The wetland hydrology designed for this project involved filling a ‘seepage reservoir’ with field drainage water. The water then seeps into a layer of sand and wood chips (a carbon source) before exiting into surface ponds and continuing its flow path through sequential seepage and pond processing before entering Buntings Branch and Bishopville Prong. This treatment has been demonstrated to provide high rates of denitrification, thus reducing export of this keystone nutrient to the receiving stream. In addition to the wetland creation, an approximately 1,000 linear foot segment of Buntings Branch will be restored by using grade
|Lizard Hill Sand Mine Reclamation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Ocean City, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lizard Hill Sand Mine Reclamation and Bishopville Pond Restoration|| |
Ocean City, Maryland , United States This unique ecosystem restoration project included two significant components. The first, reclamation of the abandoned Lizard Hill Sand Mine, created a 32-acre mosaic seepage wetlands consisting of shallow aquatic beds and Atlantic white cedar wetlands. This allowed processing of nutrient rich agricultural runoff from adjacent agricultural fields by routing flow through functional wetlands prior to discharge into Buntings Branch, a tributary to the Saint Martens River, one of the worst non-attainment areas in Maryland. A 1,000 linear foot segment of Buntings Branch was also restored with grade control structures that raise the bottom of the incised channel and reconnect the stream to its floodplain. This restoration delivered multiple benefits: rehydration of the forested floodplain, improved nutrient processing in runoff waters, and restoration of natural storm flow peak damping from the approximately 13.5 square mile drainage area. The second component, the restoration of Bishopville Pond, converted a five-acre, in-line pond formed by a sheet pile dam across Buntings Branch to an off-line pond by constructing a lateral sand seepage berm. This plan restored Buntings Branch to a free-flowing lotic system that provides aquatic passage while preserving pond aesthetics valued by the community. A grade control/flow splitting weir with a series of parabolic weirs and step pools conveys the confined bypass channel along the lateral berm. The Bishopville Pond restoration planting plan specified genetic stock from the Coastal Bays region, species once locally abundant but now rare in the landscape. Local schools, watershed associations, and State and County organized volunteers conducted the planting effort as a stewardship project.
|Lizard Hill Sand Mine Reclamation and Bishopville Pond Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Ocean City, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Locust Chapel Woods Habitat Management Plan|| |
Ellicott City, Maryland , United States Biohabitats helped the Land Design & Development, Inc. development team prepare a habitat management plan for the proposed 36-acre Locust Chapel community in Ellicott City, Maryland. The plan brought together components of site history and ecology which recommends habitat management strategies for 20 acres of open space integrated throughout the residential community, envisions these spaces and their habitats as attractive, exciting and important community assets for both wildlife and people. The Locust Chapel Woods site includes an historic farmstead and is bounded on one side by a stream system. The open space on site includes a forest conservation easement and open space recreational areas, as well as stormwater management practices. The habitatmanagement plan serves as the first of its kind, and satisfies the requirements of Howard County Maryland’s newly initiated Green Neighborhoods Program. The plan’s intent is to increase the protection and creation of native habitat areas within development and conservation areas of a new, planned community. Important elements of the habitat management plan include: an assessment of natural resources on and adjacent to the property; identification of existing and potential habitat areas to be enhanced; identification of potential threats and the management techniques to minimize them, an outline of short- and long-term goals for management; and estimated implementation costs. Adaptive management plays a key role in the successful implementation of the plan. It provides a framework for dealing with inherent variability and changes in natural systems and allows for stakeholder-based management decisions that are informed by monitoring and analysis.
|Locust Chapel Woods Habitat Management Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Ellicott City, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Long Beach Island (Surf City) Dune Grass Removal/Replanting|| |
Surf City, New Jersey , United States Under contract to the Philadelphia District Army Corps of Engineers, Biohabitats was responsible for the removal of existing dune vegetation for an area of approximately 15.5 acres of sand dunes along the Surf City beach, from South 3rd Street to North 21st Street. Following removal and safe storage of this native plant material, the sand comprising the dune was screened for unexploded ordinance and the screened sand was replaced into the dune configuration. Once the dune was reestablished, Biohabitats was responsible for reinstalling the removed native dune material and installing seed for additional native dune species. These plantings were fertilized and cared for during the warranty period. This work was completed within the project’s schedule and budget, the Corps awarded the project team the Philadelphia District’s External Partnering Award for 2009 for the effort.
|Long Beach Island (Surf City) Dune Grass Removal/Replanting||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Surf City, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Long Wharf Flood Protection Strategies|| |
New Haven, Connecticut , United States With its commercial, educational, industrial, port, and recreational facilities, the Long Wharf district of New Haven, CT is an important regional hub. Its location along New Haven Harbor and directly off of Long Island Sound, however, makes it susceptible to flood damage from extreme weather events. Most recently, the area suffered flooding and structural damage following Hurricane Irene and Superstorm Sandy. As a key member of a team led by GZA, Biohabitats is working with the City of New Haven to enhance the resiliency and safety of Long Wharf in the face of future storms and sea level rise while also potentially improving the local ecology. Biohabitats is working to develop design strategies for a flood protection system for the City’s vulnerable resources. The first day of field work coincided with record cold temperatures, but that didn’t hamper progress or enthusiasm for a project that combines both human and ecological protection. Biohabitats’ primary focus is on progressing concepts related to coastal resiliency, including designs for offshore oyster reef breakwaters, living shorelines, and an expanded coastal ecosystem including sandy beach, tidal wetland, and dune habitats.
|Long Wharf Flood Protection Strategies||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New Haven, Connecticut, United States||featured-project featured|
|Los Osos Stormwater Master Plan|| |
San Luis Obispo County, California , United States Los Osos is a small community located on Moro Bay, a sensitive estuary on the California coast near San Luis Obispo. Biohabitats helped the Los Osos Community Services District prepare a plan for innovative storm water management to address flooding and groundwater contamination problems. The plan identified implementation and funding strategies to help the community develop solutions in accordance with strict standards for coastal discharges in California. Working with the Los Osos Community Services District, Biohabitats developed a community-wide approach to storm water management that responds to the sensitive setting and natural character of Los Osos while also providing an economical system to reduce pollution discharges to the Moro Bay estuary. Included in the plan are guidelines for various infiltration options, wetland treatment, sediment traps, integrated drainage areas and linear park spaces within this community of 15,000. Biohabitats also designed natural wetlands to treat stormwater runoff.
|Los Osos Stormwater Master Plan||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||San Luis Obispo County, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Loudoun County Perennial Stream Assessment|| |
Loudoun County, Virginia , United States Biohabitats was contracted to perform an assessment of perennial streams throughout all the watersheds within Loudoun County. The County extends from the Blue Ridge Mountains in the west, down to the piedmont region in the east, with the Potomac River forming its northern border. Prior to this assessment there were approximately 1,137 miles of perennial streams and 2,033 miles of nonperennial streams identified by United States Geologic Survey (USGS) topographic maps. Biohabitats’ goal was to validate the points identified and extend the limits of perenniality if necessary. Biohabitats’ field crews utilized a protocol for identifying perennial streams which was first developed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and later revised by Fairfax County, Virginia to be utilized on a local level. The protocol includes assessments of the following stream parameters: 1) streamflow and hydrology; 2) geomorphology; 3) streambed soils; 4) vegetation; 5) aquatic invertebrates; and 6) vertebrates (fish, amphibians). Biohabitats made the final determination of the perennial break point along respective stream segments by using scoring characteristics within these categories. Through weeks of field data collection, the Biohabitats team came to the conclusion that the majority of the streams identified by the USGS as intermittent streams were in fact perennial. The data was collected using hand-held GPS devices for entry into a database. This data will be further utilized by Loudoun County to potentially develop resource protection areas as defined by the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act.
|Loudoun County Perennial Stream Assessment||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Loudoun County, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Louisville Southwest Greenways Master Plan|| |
Louisville Metropolitan Area, Kentucky , United States In spite of its rich cultural history and intriguing natural features, Southwest Louisville currently lacks readily-available means for the community to access and interact with the natural environment in a way that does not depend on the automobile. The goal of the Southwest Greenways Project is to encourage people to improve their fitness and health and make them more aware of the region’s resources by creating a system of greenways. Biohabitats, as part of a multidisciplinary team, is providing an ecological foundation for the planning and design of this greenway system. This includes researching existing ecological studies, identifying and filling critical data gaps, and helping to develop greenway alternatives that not only protect the existing ecological communities but also restore degraded areas to their full ecological potential.
|Louisville Southwest Greenways Master Plan||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Louisville Metropolitan Area, Kentucky, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lower Jemez River Fish Structure Restoration Design|| |
Santa Fe National Forest, New Mexico , United States In 1989, as part of the Lower Jemez River Corridor Project, nine v-notch log structures were installed along a seven-mile reach of the river in an effort to enhance fish habitat These structures are now in various states of failure, resulting in severe riverbed and bank erosion. Biohabitats helped the USDA Forest Service assess the failing structures and develop restoration designs. The goal was to remove the log structures in a way that would reduce erosion and sedimentation, stabilize the riverbed and banks, and improve in-stream habitat. The design reduced the overall bankfull width/depth ratio, which helps reduce water temperatures and increase the quantity of pool habitat. A tertiary goal to maintain deep pools at fishing areas previously installed by the Forest Service was also addressed by the restoration design. The design uses a variety of boulder structures, designed to integrate with the river’s natural features and fishing areas, creates a more natural approach to stabilizing the channel and providing fish habitat. Transplanted willows are also used to stabilize banks while providing shade and cover.
|Lower Jemez River Fish Structure Restoration Design||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Santa Fe National Forest, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lower Kingman Island Habitat Restoration|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States In the 1920s, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers created Kingman and Heritage Islands as part of the Anacostia Tidal Flats Reclamation project. Management of the 45-acre Lower Kingman Island and five-acre Heritage Island was transferred to the District of Columbia Government in 1996. In an effort to enhance existing ecosystem processes and functionality while providing well-designed, usable open space for passive recreation and environmental education, the Corps and the District of Columbia Parks and Recreation turned to Biohabitats for help. Through an Indefinite Delivery contract with the Corps’ New York District, the Corps’ Baltimore District retained Biohabitats to evaluate an existing master plan, conduct environmental assessment and monitoring studies and develop a full set of construction documents for the implementation of ecological restoration initiatives and passive recreation features for the islands. Biohabitats performed environmental inventories, biological resource surveys and habitat evaluations. Data was synthesized through a series of environmental analysis and assessment exercises to develop an ecosystem restoration design that focused on habitat restoration. Working with the Corps to direct engineering investigations, hydrologic and hydraulic engineering, surveying & integration of typographic/bathymetric surveys and geotechnical engineering, Biohabitats formulated a full set of construction plans. The plans, prepared in accordance with Corps regulations, guidelines and procedures, included habitat restoration along with shoreline stabilization and erosion control. Biohabitats prepared construction cost estimates using Micro-Computer Aided Cost Estimating System (MCACES). Biohabitats also prepared a Natural Resource Management Manual detailing an adaptive management regime for the long-term management of the specified restoration initiatives.
|Lower Kingman Island Habitat Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lower Mill Creek Valley Conservation Greenway Master Plan|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States Cleveland’s “Emerald Necklace” provides residents with a greenway system unmatched in many urban communities. The greenways, parkways, and recreational areas that comprise the Emerald Necklace provide critical natural resource protection and outdoor recreation opportunities. With the completion of the Ohio & Erie Canal Reservation, an opportunity existed to connect the Canal Reservation with Garfield Reservation and Mill Creek Falls. The establishment of this greenway connection could protect, enhance and restore riparian and aquatic biodiversity along the Lower Mill Creek Valley. Recognizing the importance of restoring an ecological corridor between the two parks, Cleveland Metroparks retained Biohabitats to lead a team of landscape architects, conservation biologists and greenway planners to prepare a study and draft a master plan for the greenway. Using principles of landscape ecology, conservation biology, and regenerative design, the Biohabitats team addressed issues concerning habitat fragmentation, water quality, wetland function, stream morphology, and plant community composition. The team combined this analysis with both cultural and recreational opportunities to produce a greenway master plan that helps protect, enhance and restore the ecological integrity of the corridor. The plan also served as an economic stimulus for the surrounding neighborhoods of Garfield Heights and Cuyahoga Heights.
|Lower Mill Creek Valley Conservation Greenway Master Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Lower Spring Branch Stream Restoration|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States As part of an on-call stream restoration contract, Biohabitats designed a restoration plan for Lower Spring Branch, a Class III Trout Stream that is a tributary to the Gunpowder River. Located downstream of an earlier Biohabitats stream restoration project, Lower Spring Branch is a large, hydrologically flashy channel within a suburban neighborhood. Biohabitats’ design focused on creating a self-maintaining channel, providing in-stream and riparian habitat, and protecting urban infrastructure. The project involved coordinating with numerous property owners, and accounting for multiple constraints posed by ultilities, outfalls, and road crossings. Specific tasks included the application of Rosgen Stream Classification System, hydrologic and hydraulic analyses, sediment transport analysis, ecological assessments, soil bioengineering, preparation of design and construction drawings including complete specifications, channel geometry, site grading, engineers’ cost estimate, regulatory permit applications, and a maintenance and monitoring program. Biohabitats also prepared final plans for bid and managed construction. All construction documents and details were CADD-generated by Biohabitats technicians following County standards. Biohabitats’ construction oversight services included daily site visits and as-built review. Construction was completed in fall of 2008, and the project is functioning as designed.
|Lower Spring Branch Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|LSU Burden Center Campus Master Plan|| |
Baton Rouge,, Louisiana , United States When Louisiana State University (LSU) decided to revise their Campus Master Plan, they contracted Biohabitats to provide insight into the sustainability of the effort on a landscape scale. Biohabitats conducted an ecological assessment of the Burden Center property, developed ecological management recommendations, and created a sustainability framework. Hurricane Gustav struck in the middle of the process, which allowed an opportunity to examine the structural changes caused by a massive storm. As part of the site assessment, Biohabitats evaluated the landscape context and connectivity of the site, described the existing forest cover, soils and hydrology, and evaluated the designated wetlands there. Biohabitats then made specific recommendation on how to maximize the site’s ecological attributes in the campus master plan. Although the site was relatively isolated from other woodlands at the landscape level and there was little riparian habitat along its central creek, Biohabitats recommended the restoration of a native woodland corridor to improve the habitat for wildlife and native plants.
|LSU Burden Center Campus Master Plan||Conservation Planning,||Baton Rouge,, Louisiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Magness Farm Wetland Restoration|| |
Harford County, Maryland , United States As part of the Maryland State Highway Administration’s (SHA) Environmental Stewardship program, Biohabitats completed the restoration of a 7.5-acre wetland and 1,000-foot erosion gulley. Located on a working farm and agricultural museum, this stream groundwater and wetland restoration project also had the potential to become a powerful demonstration project. Biohabitats responsibilities included: site assessment; wetland delineation; topographic survey; coordination with regulatory agencies; permitting; development of alternative restoration concepts consistent with Interagency Mitigation Taskforce Guidelines; production of restoration plans through construction documents; assistance with contractor selection; and construction oversight. After it was successfully completed the restoration garnered much public attention. It was featured in SHA and county newsletters and visited by representatives of numerous organizations, such as the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, the Western Shore Tributary Team and Harford County’s Departments of Public Works and Planning, have conducted site visits.
|Magness Farm Wetland Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Harford County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Mandeville Wastewater Expansion & Nutrient Assimilation Project|| |
Mandeville, Louisiana , United States The City of Mandeville is located on the North Shore of Lake Ponchartrain, North of New Orleans. The existing wastewater facility consisted of a three cell aerated lagoon and constructed wetlands. This system, with a dry weather flow of 1.0 MGD, would work well most of the year, but was periodically out of compliance for ammonia spikes. After assessment it was determined that storm event contributions would increase flow to 9.0 MGD. Biohabitats designed and permitted an upgrade to the existing system to 2.0 MGD by adding a stormwater diversion system, improved aeration, and a gravel trickling filter. Treated is discharged through an irrigation system into a cypress forest near the site. The design utilizes treated effluent as a resource for the restoration of the surrounding site. Competing proposals recommended activated sludge systems with price tags almost six times the cost of Biohabitats’ solution. In addition to the basic improvements, an on-line monitoring system, which included a fiber optic network, was added for remote and onsite monitoring. On-line monitoring data includes ammonia, nitrate, dissolved oxygen, ORP, and operational status of all pumps and aeration equipment. The system has been in compliance since installation and improvements were finalized. Additionally, the infrastructure has survived the radical storm events present in the region, including Hurricane Katrina.
|Mandeville Wastewater Expansion & Nutrient Assimilation Project||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Mandeville, Louisiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Mapping Environmental Justice & Water Quality in Baltimore County|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States In crafting and signing the Baltimore Watershed Agreement, the Baltimore City and County solidified their joint commitment to improve water quality in their shared watersheds. Soon afterwards, Biohabitats helped both entities to develop a Phase I Action Plan to begin working toward this goal. Because environmental justice (EJ) emerged as a critical, cross-cutting theme for all proposed watershed planning and water quality related actions, the resulting, final Action Plan requires the County and City to jointly “ensure environmental justice indicators are taken into consideration during major planning efforts.” To address this requirement, Biohabitats prepared a white paper on environmental justice indicators and assessment methods, interviewed local experts, and reviewed peer programs to evaluate linkages between environmental justice and clean water at the community, state, and local government levels. Very few sources explicitly use a defined set of indicators to track environmental justice in the context of watershed planning and water quality, so it became clear that there was a need to further explore and develop a set of indicators that could. Drawing from the initial research on environmental justice indicators and assessment methods, Biohabitats created an assessment methodology that would integrate environmental justice principles into watershed planning. The methodology uses GIS software to layer relevant EJ and watershed health indicator data including demographic characteristics, human health indicators and watershed health indicators. Initial results of the assessment model developed for Baltimore County highlighted several subwatersheds where communities are at risk for environmental justice issues associated with water quality, based on the indicator model for environmental justice and water quality. The resulting maps and associated report are informing the County’s small watershed action plans (SWAPs), as well as other watershed planning efforts, to prioritize projects in neighborhoods with environmental injustice and poor water quality. Working with Baltimore County, Biohabitats
|Mapping Environmental Justice & Water Quality in Baltimore County||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|MARC Green Infrastructure Framework|| |
Kansas City, Missouri , United States Across the country, communities are seeing the potential to connect natural systems to communities as a key way to address environmental, economic, and social challenges. In the greater Kansas City area, the Mid-America Regional Council recognizes green infrastructure planning as a way to improve human health and well-being by increasing access to green space, reducing susceptibility to flooding, and improving habitat, air, and water quality. To create a regional green infrastructure planning framework, Biohabitats worked with BNIM to establish ecological health and processes at the heart of the region’s cultural and economic fabric. To do this, Biohabitats conducted a system inventory and synthesized existing resource data into a single overlay map of high value natural resources. A prioritization model was then developed that integrated the high value resources with areas of pressure and community needs. The resulting “heat maps” were shared with community stakeholders to identify other potential catalysts for implementation. These factors included proximity to trails, schools, or other recreation amenities, accessibility, and momentum where projects were planned or started or partners are in place. The resulting Phase 1 Green Infrastructure Framework, completed in January 2017, has a three-tiered structure. At the highest level is a series of regional-scale maps called the Atlas, which highlights priority areas based on values and needs. The next tier zooms into the watershed-scale, and presents a playbook for implementation. Within the playbook, examples of opportunity areas are highlighted to show the places with the greatest potential for an integrated green infrastructure approach as well as example strategies for connection, partnerships, benefits, and metrics. As part of the process, the consulting team also researched policy examples and regional solutions that offered lessons learned and recommended tools to build political support and context for successful outcomes.
|MARC Green Infrastructure Framework||Conservation Planning,||Kansas City, Missouri, United States||featured-project featured|
|Maryland Ecological Investment Corporation|| |
, Maryland , United States Forests are commonly valued economically for their ability to supply products, such as lumber, pulp and paper. The ecosystem services provided by forests (e.g., generating and maintaining soils, providing wildlife habitat, abating air pollution, improving water quality, etc.), however, have largely been considered free services by traditional economic evaluation systems. With funding from the Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology, Biohabitats is assisting the University of Maryland’s Department of Environmental Science and Technology in developing a simulation model whereby economic values are assigned to Maryland’s forests and forest stewards are paid for providing ecosystem services to public consumers. Development of the model involves the valuation of all Maryland forest types, including restored riparian and upland forests. Biohabitats is providing the team with recently restored forest sites and serving as technical advisors for model calibration and review, as well as the collection and analysis of ecological data such as leaf area index, basal area, tree species, soil total organic matter, etc. The value of forest ecosystems will be determined using the integrative accounting model of solar emergy evaluation. A contraction of the term “embodied energy,” emergy refers to the total amount of work required to make something, which includes the work of nature and people. Once established, the model entity, known as the Maryland Ecological Investment Corporation could potentially be used in states beyond Maryland and with all types of ecosystems.
|Maryland Ecological Investment Corporation||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Maui Cattle Industrial Wastewater Treatment & Reuse Using Natural Systems|| |
Maui, Hawaii , United States The Maui Cattle Company was developing a new meat-processing facility near a residential area. The client desired a wastewater treatment and reuse system that minimizes odor, provides reuse-quality treatment in an environmentally-sensitive manner and supplies reclaimed effluent for pasture irrigation. The treatment facility is designed to produce reuse-quality effluent from up to 14,000 gpd of high-strength wash-down water from the plant. Treatment components include prescreening and a dissolved-air flotation (DAF) unit, roughing and nitrification trickling filters, subsurface flow constructed wetlands, a recirculating sand filter, mechanical filtration, and UV disinfection. Reclaimed effluent will be stored in an onsite, covered irrigation pond. Approximately five acres of pasture land will be irrigated with the effluent, drastically reducing the facility’s water consumption. Biohabitats integrated conventional pretreatment technologies (screens and DAF) with treatment components based upon natural processes (wetlands, sand filter, trickling filters) to handle industrial-strength effluent in a mechanically simple and energy efficient process.
|Maui Cattle Industrial Wastewater Treatment & Reuse Using Natural Systems||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Maui, Hawaii, United States||featured-project featured|
|Maywood Avenue Stormwater Volume Reduction Project|| |
Toledo, Ohio , United States About 20 percent of Toledo, Ohio is served by a system where sewage and stormwater are carried through the same pipe. Under normal conditions, this does not present a problem, as both sewage and stormwater are treated at the wastewater treatment plant. However, in the event of heavy rainfall, the system becomes overloaded. Stormwater mixes with sewage and overflows into area waterways and sometimes backs up into residents’ homes. The Maywood Avenue Stormwater Volume Reduction pilot project uses natural systems, or “green infrastructure,” to help reduce the volume of stormwater entering the combined sewer system and improve water quality. The Maywood Avenue neighborhood features demographics and physical components typical of the well-established, older urban neighborhoods around Toledo. The street has 66 lots, 46 of which have homes. This project, led by Tetra Tech, Inc., with assistance from American Rivers and Biohabitats, retrofits the residential street right-of-way with green infrastructure practices. Bioretention swales were created within tree lawns; sidewalks were replaced with permeable pavement; and rain gardens and rain barrels were installed on private lots. Biohabitats led design of the bioswales, including sizing, soils and materials specifications, and planting plans. Monitoring of the project will help to determine its success in reducing runoff to the combined sewer system. If successful, it will be used as a model and template for retrofitting streets throughout Toledo.
|Maywood Avenue Stormwater Volume Reduction Project||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Toledo, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|McMurry Natural Area Restoration|| |
Fort Collins, Colorado , United States The City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Program manages over 1,000 acres of open space along the Cache La Poudre River. As the on-call consultant for Riparian and Wetland Restoration, Biohabitats has been working with the City since 2008 to help the Natural Area Program protect its natural resources, enhance aquatic and riparian habitat, and improve wetland function along the river. As part of this effort, Biohabitats assessed all of the City’s Natural Areas along the Poudre River and identified opportunities for ecological restoration. One top priority site was the McMurry Natural Area, located within the City’s urban greenbelt, where decades of gravel mining scarred the landscape and left open water gravel pits with very little biological diversity and minimal ecological function. Working closely with the City, Biohabitats led a design-build effort to convert the gravel pits into an ecologically functioning landscape. The restoration design focused on lowering elevated berms (artifacts of the mining operation), creating shallow wetlands, and revegetating the riparian area. A diverse assemblage of five vegetated zones were created including emergent wetland, wet meadow, willow, cottonwood, and upland grasses. To facilitate public use and stewardship of the site, the design included a pedestrian trail and designated fishing areas. Grading and planting of Phase 1 was completed in June 2011. The City is currently expanding the restoration project to an adjacent gravel pit and implementing riverbank improvements including channel realignment and visitor amenities.
|McMurry Natural Area Restoration||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Fort Collins, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|McMurry-Poudre Restoration Phase 1 & 2|| |
Fort Collins, Colorado , United States McMurry Natural Area is a 44-acre site in the western part of Fort Collins that includes two floodplain ponds and a half-mile of riparian corridor along the Cache la Poudre River. Former sand and gravel mining had scarred the landscape and left high armored riverbanks, containing concrete and automobiles, and steep pond edges with minimal ecological function and little biological diversity. In Phase 1, Biohabitats worked closely with the City and led a design-build effort that targeted the western pond and areas outside of the floodway. The restoration design focused on lowering elevated pond edges, creating shallow wetlands, and revegetating the riparian area. A diverse assemblage of five vegetated zones were created including emergent wetland, wet meadow, willow, cottonwood, and upland grasses. To facilitate public use and stewardship of the site, the design included a pedestrian trail and designated fishing areas. Grading and planting of Phase 1 was completed in June 2011. Phase 2 of the project was initiated by the City in 2013 to expand the restoration to the eastern gravel pit as well as include streambank and channel improvements. Biohabitats led this effort which included preparing the Phase 2 design-build plans, coordinating floodplain modeling analysis, and implementing all aspects of construction including erosion control and soil management. The project included removing concrete and debris from the stream bank, lowering high berms to reconnect the floodplain, regrading the ponds’ shorelines and berms to more gradual slopes, and using the excavated soils to create shallow water wetlands along the edges of the ponds. The 2011 Poudre River Master Plan found that the cottonwood riparian forest regeneration has been negatively affected by the urbanization and alterations in the flow regime, and the diversity of the Poudre’s native vegetation is limited. Accordingly, the full design included planting native wetland vegetation and upland
|McMurry-Poudre Restoration Phase 1 & 2||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Fort Collins, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|MD 43 Mitigation at Hollyneck Vernal Pool Restoration|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats worked closely with the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) to evaluate potential sites for wetland mitigation to compensate for impacts associated with a highway improvement project. After reviewing SHA’s existing site selection studies, Biohabitats conducted a GIS-based study which incorporated additional sites identified by SHA through property owner offers and earlier project contacts. Biohabitats then prioritized procedures to facilitate site ranking. Once sites were ranked, those with the most promising mitigation potential were further examined to evaluate feasibility. Biohabitats performed field preliminary assessment to examine each site’s soils, depth to groundwater, and vegetative conditions. Biohabitats prepared summary site assessment reports, which provided information to regulators, also helped gather opinions and preferences from U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) officials during site visits. As a result of these collaborative efforts, a preferred wetland mitigation site was selected. Biohabitats developed a wetland restoration design concept and worked with SHA and the USACE to develop mitigation credits that would result from the proposed mitigation project. Biohabitats then mapped wetland and vernal pool habitats present on part of the site and used this information to support the development of a cost-effective surface water wetland restoration project. This involved conducting a ground and surface water investigation, developing a specific water budget (vernal pool hydrology), performing soils analysis, and developing a mitigation plan that creates a sufficient range of surface ponding to ensure vernal pool habitats will be present under the full range of climatic conditions anticipated at the site. Biohabitats then mapped wetland and vernal pool habitats present on a part of the preferred project site and used this information to support the development of a cost-effective surface water wetland restoration project. This included conducting a ground and surface water investigation, developing a site-specific water budget (vernal
|MD 43 Mitigation at Hollyneck Vernal Pool Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Mercer County Park Northwest, Interpretive Design|| |
Lawrenceville, New Jersey , United States Biohabitats contributed landscape assessment support and ecological recommendations for an interpretive design guidance developed for Northwest Park, a part of Mercer County Parks, in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. The goal was to create a deep connection to the site through a deeper understanding of its ecological character, landscape legacy, and existing patterns of woods, meadows and waterways, while creating a framework for ongoing enhancements that enable visitors to connect to the natural resources of the County Park’s system. As part of the design team Biohabitats assessed and characterized the existing conservation and restoration activities being performed at the park through field assessments, interviews with key stakeholders and the Park Commission, and a review of collected information. New site features were considered that would balance ecological function with visitor experience. From this assessment, a set of preliminary restoration guidelines were developed, which provided the basis for the draft interpretive design guidance. Biohabitats prepared a report on the ecological processes, natural resources and wildlife habitat in the park, including conservation and restoration strategies which informed the suggested design guidelines. The guidance included an evaluation of the character and relationship of existing and proposed park elements, proposed concepts and precedents for park improvements, connections and linkages to areas within the park as well as other adjacent open space and recreational facilities and destinations, a conceptual park-wide planting strategy, and preliminary design guidelines for site features.
|Mercer County Park Northwest, Interpretive Design||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Lawrenceville, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center: Wastewater Treatment System|| |
Wolf Lake, Indiana , United States The Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center of Goshen College is located within a 1,150-acre nature preserve that includes northern Indiana ecosystems such as peat bogs, swamp maple forest, upland mesic forest, old field, prairie, and lakeshore. The Center houses Goshen College’s expanding environmental science program and includes Rieth Village, where students can live near the ecosystems they study. The Center was conceived and designed to meet the highest standards of the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED rating system. The Reith Village is one of the first LEED Platinum projects in the state of Indiana. A key member of the integrated design team, Biohabitats designed a wastewater treatment system that relied heavily upon constructed wetlands, a sand filter, and a trickling filter. Primary treatment at the site occurred in a septic tank. Water from the septic tank then flowed to a trickling filter (BOD/TSS reduction), an aerated lagoon (nitrification, BOD reduction), then to a constructed wetlands (nitrification, denitrification, BOD reduction), and finally to a recirculating sand filter (nitrification, denitrification, TSS/solids filtration, natural disinfection, BOD reduction). The cycle of nitrification and denitrification, crucial to the wastewater treatment process, is achieved at Merry Lea in Phase 1 by passing effluent through constructed wetlands and the recirculating sand filter. Including a trickling filter and an aerated lagoon in the treatment process enhances the nitrogen cycle. The trickling filter and lagoon nitrify the effluent, which is subsequently denitrified as it passes through the wetlands. A similar process occurs within the sand filter, which provides final nitrogen reductions prior to disposal or reuse. The treatment cycle is so effective that treated effluent can be reused on site for flushing toilets and irrigation. The system, which has become an important educational tool and an amenity for students, enabled Merry Lea to meet a
|Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center: Wastewater Treatment System||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Wolf Lake, Indiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Middle Bass Island Mitigation Design-Build|| |
Middle Bass Island, Ohio , United States The Lake Erie Marina, located on Middle Bass Island just north of Port Clinton, Ohio, was in need of safety upgrades to fulfill the pressing needs of a growing boating community. In addition to replacing the marina, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources needed to add campground facilities and related grading, paving and storm drainage. Biohabitats and its sister construction company, Ecological Restoration & Management, devised a revegetation plan to allow for marina upgrades and campground construction while also enhancing the site’s ecological function and satisfying federal and state permit and mitigation requirements. After examining restoration approaches and details with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, Biohabitats developed a technical memorandum documenting the best approach, or ‘value engineering,’ for the site’s planting plan. The plan recommendations, which maximized planting success and optimized project costs relative to satisfying permit and mitigation requirements, included: vernal pool planted with 133 trees; category 3 wetland planted with 37 shrubs; vegetated shallows planted with 6,898 submerged aquatic plants; and 0.24 acres of American lotus replacement. With Biohabitats’ planting plan installed, the upgraded marina not only has improved safety and value, but also ecological function as a harbor refuge.
|Middle Bass Island Mitigation Design-Build||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Middle Bass Island, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Mill Creek Connector Trail and Ecological Restoration|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States Mill Creek has a drainage area of over 20 square miles and flows through nine communities within southern Cuyahoga County, Ohio. This tributary to the Cuyahoga River has played a considerable role in the industrial development of the region. Since human development of the area, the Lower Mill Creek Valley from Mill Creek Falls to the Cleveland Metroparks, Ohio & Erie Canal Reservation has undergone significant environmental degradation. Impacts to the watershed and stream include, poorly regulated industry, landfill operations, and combined sewer overflows. These actions resulted in impaired ecological condition throughout the Mill Creek Valley. Using the framework provided in a prior study, the project team executed an ecological restoration and greenway plan for the Lower Mill Creek Valley. The work included restoration and conservation of native vegetation and wildlife habitat, designing and constructing a stable, natural channel for Mill Creek, and constructing a bike and hike trail to connect people from the upper Mill Creek Valley to the larger Cleveland Metroparks, Ohio & Erie Canal Reservation. The plan reclaimed and enhanced a once abused landscape, and created a greenway corridor within an urban center that expands recreation opportunities for approximately 450,000 people living in the surrounding communities.
|Mill Creek Connector Trail and Ecological Restoration||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Mill Creek Stream Restoration at Kerruish Park|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States With its ballfields, swimming pool, and tennis courts, Kerruish Park is a community recreational oasis in a landscape bordered by residential development and roadways. Located on the border of Cleveland and Warrensville Heights, the park includes a densely forested area containing a large perennial stream known as Mill Creek. At some point, in an attempt to control stormwater, an earthen dam and a detention basin were created. Further work on the detention basin was completed in the early 2000’s to increase the storage. However, sedimentation, poor water quality, and fish passage through the reach are ongoing problems within the project area. After developing a schematic design to restore 2,000 linear feet of Mill Creek, along with its riparian area, Biohabitats collaborated with the Mill Creek Watershed Partnership (MCWP), Cuyahoga County Board of Health (CCBH), and West Creek Preservation Committee (WCPC) to bring the restoration to life. The restoration will improve fish passage over two sewer lines which are acting as lowhead dams, provide more storage by reconnecting the stream to a floodplain, and improve water quality through increasing storage on the floodplain, groundwater/surface water interactions, and instream diversity. The restoration plan also allows the wooded stream to become a safer and more engaging and accessible recreational feature in the park.
|Mill Creek Stream Restoration at Kerruish Park||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Miller Park Bird Refuge Restoration and Enhancement|| |
Salt Lake City, Utah , United States Since it was established in 1935, Miller Park Bird Refuge and Nature Preserve has served as a wildlife corridor and waypoint for migrating neo-tropical birds, and important pocket of green space within an otherwise urbanized city environment. Red Butte Creek, which flows through the site, was already stressed by surrounding development. The creek suffered severe impacts after a 2010 oil pipeline spill upstream. Biohabitats helped the Salt Lake City Parks and Public Lands Department regenerate ecosystem health and natural function to a severely degraded reach of Red Butte Creek in Miller Park. The project included four major elements: invasive species control and establishment of native vegetation; streambed restoration and water velocity reduction; stream bank stabilization, and trail and signage improvements. Biohabitats’ approach raised the creek bed, widened the channel, and reduced stress on its bed and banks. The design not only slows down, detains, and treats stormwater; it also hydrates the floodplain to allow native riparian vegetation to flourish. Riffle/pool sequences also provide significant aquatic habitat. Biohabitats prepared concept designs and then assisted Salt Lake City to obtain feedback from residents during several public meetings. Biohabitats incorporated the feedback into construction drawings and complete bid documents. We also assisted Salt Lake City during construction by providing construction oversight services. Construction was completed in fall of 2014 and the project has weathered several large storm events – one of which exceeded the 100-year discharge.
|Miller Park Bird Refuge Restoration and Enhancement||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Salt Lake City, Utah, United States||featured-project featured|
|Mine Brook Road Wastewater Treatment|| |
Bernards Township, New Jersey , United States The Mine Brook Road Project is a 12-home cluster development striving to become a precedent for green community design in New Jersey. Biohabitats collaborated with Back to Nature and Ecological, both important sustainability partners, to guide the design process and facilitate an innovative and regenerative development. The development was guided by smart growth concepts, including natural resource enhancement, land preservation, groundwater recharge, soil health, sustainable agriculture, green building and energy-efficient design, character preservation and viewshed protection. Biohabitats designed an onsite wastewater treatment system that uses various natural systems to achieve an effluent quality that meets or exceeds strict state effluent requirements. The development contains five-bedroom homes and a community center with a wastewater design flow of 5,000 gallons per day. The wastewater system consists of small-diameter collection network, trickling filter, subsurface flow constructed wetlands with recirculation, sand filtration and subsurface drip dispersal. The onsite treatment system provides a natural, low maintenance, low-cost solution while adding an ecologically beneficial landscape feature and avoiding expensive municipal sewer infrastructure expansion. The Mine Brook Road Project serves as a green standard for decentralized developments in New Jersey.
|Mine Brook Road Wastewater Treatment||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Bernards Township, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Minebank Run Stream Restoration|| |
Baltimore County, Maryland , United States
|Minebank Run Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore County, Maryland, United States|
|Miquon School Stormwater & Landscape Management Master Plan|| |
Conshohocken, Pennsylvania , United States Nestled in Pennsylvania’s forested Wissahickon Valley, yet just a few miles away from Philadelphia, the Miquon School is an independent elementary school that aims to instill in its students a love of the environment and inclusive communities. The school campus, which includes rock outcrops and groundwater seeps, is regarded as a classroom and nature is integrated into all facets of learning. Biohabitats worked with the landscape architecture firm Wells Appel to help diagnose and develop a strategy for resolving flooding and stream channel erosion problems on the school campus. The end product was a campus stormwater and landscape management plan. The Biohabitats team began by developing a hydrologic model of the watershed and conducting rapid field reconnaissance to better understand flow paths, sources of runoff, and landscape challenges and opportunities for more effective water management. Strategies that were considered and further developed included retention within landscape forms, energy dissipation to lessen erosive forces, and beneficial reuse ideas that could be integrated into school curricula. The final plan also recommended significant stream stabilization and restoration efforts within the campus to improve safety and protect existing infrastructure. By embracing and identifying a comprehensive strategy to mitigate site conditions, the school is well positioned to pursue grant funding and other in-kind resources to bring the plan and vision to fruition so that the important legacy of environmentally-based learning can continue to be a focus of the school.
|Miquon School Stormwater & Landscape Management Master Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Miquon School Stream Restoration|| |
Conshohocken, Pennsylvania , United States Built in 1932 by parents disillusioned with traditional education, the Miquon School is an independent, progressive elementary school nestled within a ten-acre, wooded campus. With a mission to create confident, life-long learners who will move out into the wider world with strong academic and social skills, intense personal interests, a love for the arts and environment, and a commitment to building inclusive and peaceful communities, the school views immersion in nature as integral to learning. Miquon Creek, a first order tributary to the Schuylkill River, serves as the heart and soul of the campus, providing a multitude of opportunities for hands-on learning and exploration. But decades of mill farming and development in the watershed has degraded the creek’s safety and ecosystem health. After reviewing available data, assessing the health of the creek and adjacent landscape, and documenting soil conditions and erosion issues, Biohabitats crafted a design to restore stability, ecological function, sustainability, and safe access to the creek. The restoration approach, which involved stabilizing the channel bed, grading select banks, and raising the channel invert, also maximized in-stream and riparian habitat by creating stable micro-topography. By integrating a series of riffles and pools to retain water and create shallow aquatic beds to dissipate erosive energy, the design also helps protect nearby wetland and groundwater seeps, which in turn protect water quality. The restoration design creates new, safe opportunities for student stewardship, education, and play.
|Miquon School Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Mirror Lake Remediation and Restoration|| |
Dover, Delaware , United States Mirror Lake is located along the St. Jones River, a tributary to Delaware Bay. With its placement along a main thoroughfare, it is considered one of the primary gateways to historic Dover, Delaware, and it is a prominent feature of Dover’s urban landscape. Over the last several decades, however, Mirror Lake has suffered from stormwater runoff, increased nutrient loading and chemical contaminants from within the watershed. The contaminate levels have a detrimental effect on the many plant and animal species within the lake and the predators that feed on these species. The contamination in the lake has also led to restrictions of fish consumption. The contaminates are bound to the soil in the lake, however when large storms, hurricanes, and Nor’easters stir up the sediments in the lake bottom, these contaminates remobilize and are able to drift downstream, thereby affecting other portions of the St. Jones River and the Delaware Bay. As part of a multi-phase effort to improve water quality in the watershed, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) initiated the restoration of Mirror Lake. The project began with remediation. Activated carbon was placed within the lake and surrounding riverine areas in order to bind contaminants in the sediment. Once the carbon was in place, it was the desire of DNREC to also improve the local habitat as well as nutrient cycling within the lake. For help in crafting the design, DNREC turned to Biohabitats. Biohabitats’ designed a tidal wetland planting area in order to improve both the aesthetics of the area as well as the water quality within the lake. Biohabitats also developed a planting plan for the tidal wetland area to restore native vegetation within the lake that will also provide additional habitat for the species that thrive amongst the wetland
|Mirror Lake Remediation and Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Dover, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Missionary Ridge Noxious Weed Inventory & Treatment|| |
Durango, Colorado , United States For two months beginning in June 2002 fires burned over 70,000 acres of Missionary Ridge and surrounding lands within the San Juan National Forest. The U.S. Forest Service, concerned about the spread of noxious weed species, retained Biohabitats to identify, inventory and treat noxious weeds over a 65,000-acre area for a period of three years. Noxious weeds of concern include the musk thistle (Carduus nutans), houndstongue (Cynoglossum officinale), bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare), yellow toadflax (Linaria vulgaris), oxeye daisy (Chrysanthemum leucanthemum), and spotted knapweed, (Centaurea maculosa) among others. Using an adaptive management approach, Biohabitats first focused inventory and treatment efforts on disturbed areas that are likely sites for noxious weed recruitment. Field data for both the weed inventory and weed treatment phases of the project were collected and recorded on Trimble XP GPS units using a customized data dictionary that greatly facilitates the acquisition and analysis of the data. This data was electronically transmitted to the Biohabitats office in Maryland, where the data was reviewed and checked for quality assurance. The data was then entered into a Geographic Information System and mapped to illustrate the extent and severity of the noxious weed infestations. This mapping then allowed the team to prioritize and select areas for on-the-ground treatment. Working with Southwest Weed Control, selected weed infestations were then treated with approved herbicides. With Forest Service concurrence, herbicides were applied from the ground using various types of equipment such as an ATV, backpack sprayer, and horse-mounted sprayers.
|Missionary Ridge Noxious Weed Inventory & Treatment||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Durango, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Monroe County Landfill Leachate Natural Treatment System|| |
Bloomington, Indiana , United States Originally opened in 1971, the Monroe County Landfill consists of a 50-acre municipal solid waste landfill (MSW) and a seven acre construction and demolition debris (C/D) landfill. The facility is permitted by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management. The original MSW landfill footprint of approximately 37 acres operated under permit number SW-46, and was closed in 1998. Biohabitats was charged with designing a system capable of treating leachate from the facility for fifty years, while meeting Indiana water quality standards for BOD, TSS, nitrogen, and heavy metals. Treated effluent could no longer be discharged into surface waters. To meet the design objectives, Biohabitats proposed a system that included reed beds designed for the removal of leachate solids and in-situ treatment. Benefits of the proposed design included extremely low operation and maintenance costs, a self-maintaining and self-regulating system (with the exception of recycling pumps), an expansion capacity, low capital cost, the ability to handle variations in design flows and loading rates, and the ability to remove metals from leachate, and biologically degrade priority pollutants. The design flow was 5,000 gpd. Temperatures range from an average 1ºC in January to 23ºC in July. The average annual precipitation is 35 inches.
|Monroe County Landfill Leachate Natural Treatment System||Ohio River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Bloomington, Indiana, United States||featured-project featured|
|Montgomery County Biological Monitoring|| |
Montgomery County, Maryland , United States At the request of the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection, Biohabitats performed biological monitoring in support of the County’s NPDES requirements. The project involved the collection of macroinvertebrates during a spring sampling period and icthyofauna during a summer sampling period. The macroinvertebrate sampling, which was conducted at 41 sites randomly located throughout six watersheds within the county, was performed in accordance with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Maryland Biological Stream Survey (MBSS) guidelines. The sampling protocols, also required the team to collect habitat and water chemistry data and perform surveys for herpetofauna. Ichthyofauna sampling was conducted at 30 randomly selected sites throughout the same six watersheds in which the macroinvertebrate sampling was conducted. Again, sampling was conducted in accordance with MBSS protocols and included the collection of habitat and water chemistry data with a repeat of the herpetofauna sampling. The information that was collected will be analyzed to provide a score based upon the identified species richness and abundance. The scores will then be compared to the results of previous years’ sampling efforts from the same site to determine if there is an overall improvement or decline in the condition of the stream.
|Montgomery County Biological Monitoring||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Montgomery County Rainscapes|| |
Montgomery County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats provided assessment, guidance, and design services to support the Montgomery County, MD Rainscapes program for innovative stormwater management in residential areas. The study aided efforts by the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to engage and gain voluntary participation of local residents to implement on-lot natural drainage practices. The work targeted four neighborhoods in the Rock Creek watershed that were selected by DEP. Biohabitats assessed opportunities for stormwater runoff volume and pollutant load reduction through the use of natural drainage projects such as rain gardens, downspout disconnection, and permeable pavement. Biohabitats conducted desktop analyses and rapid but thorough field investigations to identify problem sites and opportunities for restoration projects in both residential lots and County-owned right-of-way properties. The team identified two small drainage areas for a paired subwatershed study to measure the effectiveness of wide-scale neighborhood retrofits. We modeled several implementation scenarios to estimate changes in water quality and hydrologic performance. From these models, we developed standard designs for permeable pavement and rain gardens on residential lots, targeting both contractors and homeowners. Guidance included typical details, planting plans, construction, maintenance, and cost. Implementation plans for each target neighborhood will be developed and presented at public meetings and workshops. Future phases of the project will include development of 30% concept plans for multi-lot and right-of-way project sites.
|Montgomery County Rainscapes||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Morley Road Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
Concord Township, Ohio , United States When the Ohio Department of Natural Resources realized that the dam and outlet were failing on a 75-year old manmade lake, landowners decided to drain the pond behind the dam and the County joined in the effort to fully restore natural stream flow. Draining the pond exposed a 2.4-acre mud flat of accumulated soft sediment. If the stream were replaced in its original channel, much of that sediment would eventually wash down, compromising water quality. The County turned to Biohabitats for a design-build restoration that fit the budget available through a 319 grant. Biohabitats took an adaptive management approach to reestablishing the channel and revegetating the site. Given the available budget and site conditions, especially the four feet of unconsolidated silt, Biohabitats approached the restoration by constructing riffles along a new stream channel alignment. The design had to address the potential oxidation of the sediments in the dewatering, which creates a pH imbalance that makes the solid inhospitable to plant life. The riffles were accordingly built at the elevation of the ponded sediment, and grade controls were included to prevent further incision of the new channel. The original pond also had a forebay that had filled with sediment and become a wetland. To prevent a headcut through this wetland, the design set an upstream grade control structure at an elevation to backwater the channel through the wetland and create a transitional area. This transitional area allows excess sediment load to drop out of the water column before entering the restored reach. Downstream, a boulder drop inlet ties the reach into the newly installed culvert under Morley Road. Stream banks were stabilized with native shrub vegetation (bioengineering live stakes) such as dogwoods, willows, buttonbush, and containerized sycamore and speckled alder. The species and planting plan was designed to
|Morley Road Stream Restoration Design-Build||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Concord Township, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Morris County Parks Horticultural Strategic Facilities Master Plan|| |
Morris County, New Jersey , United States The Morris County Park Commission is the steward of 37 different park and leisure facilities serving over half a million people within Morris County, New Jersey. The horticultural unit of the Park Commission comprises three unique, distinct, complementary facilities: Frelinghuysen Arboretum, Willowwood Arboretum, and Bamboo Brook Outdoor Education Center. The Frelinghuysen Arboretum serves as the headquarters of the Parks Commission and is the primary horticultural facility for horticultural display, programming and visitation. Bamboo Brook Outdoor Education Center, adjacent to Willowwood Arboretum, is the former home of Martha Brookes Hutcheson, one of the first female professional landscape architects in the United States. Recognizing both the local and regional significance of these facilities, The Parks Commission retained a team of consultants to prepare a comprehensive Strategic Facilities Master Plan. As a key member of the consultant team lead by Heritage Landscapes, Biohabitats focused on stewardship activities related to wildlife management, endemic vegetation management, invasive species management, water conservation, responsible pest control methods, and green technology alternatives to traditional building, construction, and maintenance activities. Biohabitats developed specific environmental stewardship recommendations for each facility related to management and administration, programming, and operations.
|Morris County Parks Horticultural Strategic Facilities Master Plan||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Morris County, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|MS4 Management & Support Services|| |
Montgomery County, Maryland , United States Located just north of Washington, DC, Montgomery County, Maryland is home to more than one million people. In 2010, the County, which drains to the Chesapeake Bay, was issued one of the most stringent Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permits in the nation. The five-year permit, which was negotiated with the U.S. EPA and the Maryland Department of the Environmental (MDE) complies with the EPA’s NPDES regulations requiring large, urban jurisdictions to control pollution from stormwater runoff to the maximum extent practicable. Major new provisions of the permit include: Requiring additional stormwater management for 20% of impervious surfaces Developing and implementing measurable strategies to reduce trash Developing implementation plans and timelines to meet regulatory pollution limits for water quality standards In a joint partnership with Brown and Caldwell, Biohabitats has been leading a team of stormwater and marketing consultants to assist the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to refine an implementation framework for the MS4 Permit. The Permit requires development of a Countywide Coordinated Implementation Strategy (CCIS) to meet watershed restoration goals and water quality standards. It also requires the County to evaluate its codes, regulations, standards, policies, and planning process, and develop recommendations to implement Environmental Site Design (ESD) to the maximum extent practicable. Biohabitats was lead consultant and co-author with DEP staff of the County’s CCIS. This strategy emphasizes fixing damaged streams, improving water quality, and addressing historical damage caused by urban stormwater pollution. DEP’s existing watershed restoration efforts are a regulatory requirement of the County’s NPDES MS4 Permit. Having provided the County with more than a decade of related services, such as stream restoration assessment, design, and construction oversight; development of interagency codes for stormwater management; development of guidelines for stormwater pilots such as raingardens, rain barrels and cisterns, and
|MS4 Management & Support Services||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Muckalee Creek Wetland and Stream Mitigation Bank|| |
Sumter County, Georgia , United States A 400-acre deep woods southern Georgia wetlands adjacent to Muckalee Creek had undergone massive ditching in order to drain it for silvicultural use. Huge bottomland hardwoods had been cleared from parts of the site and pines planted in their place. The challenge was to restore the wetland hydrology and vegetation to set the stage for nature to regenerate the complex wetland ecosystem. The design approach emulated a reference wetland ecosystem. The main strategy for restoring wetland hydrology was to reverse the effect of the six miles of a drainage ditching system constructed in the late 1980s. The main strategy for restoring wetland vegetation was to clear all planted pine zones and replant all cleared zones and graded areas. The graded areas included filled ditches, removed road beds and the removed dike area. Biohabitats developed a Stream and Wetland Mitigation Banking Instrument (MBI) which was approved by federal regulatory agencies. By developing three alternative conceptual designs along with cost estimates and calculations of possible credits generated for each alternative, Biohabitats was able to provide GDOT with the most cost-effective design alternative which would generate the most mitigation credits.
|Muckalee Creek Wetland and Stream Mitigation Bank||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Sumter County, Georgia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Muskegon Lake Corridor Ecological Restoration Master Plan|| |
Muskegon, Michigan , United States After working with Biohabitats to develop an Ecological Restoration Master Plan for Hog Island in Superior, Wisconsin, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) again teamed with Biohabitats to prepare a similar plan for Muskegon Lake, a 4,149-acre inland coastal lake located along the eastern shoreline of Lake Michigan. Muskegon Lake, an EPA-designated Area of Concern (AOC), has suffered water quality and habitat problems associated with the historical discharge of pollutants. To develop an ecological restoration plan for Muskegon Lake and a tributary, Ruddiman Creek, Biohabitats spearheaded three public workshops; engaged local, state and federal government agencies; and built community consensus on a variety of ecological restoration initiatives. The master plan not only provided a framework for restoration but also served as a catalyst for fund raising and educating the public about the importance of Muskegon Lake to the environmental and economic well being of the community. The final ecological restoration master plan recommended specific action items that can be carried out by the City of Muskegon and various community organizations. These action items include the restoration of native plant communities, aquatic and terrestrial habitat, water quality best management practices, recreation amenities and educational initiatives.
|Muskegon Lake Corridor Ecological Restoration Master Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Muskegon, Michigan, United States||featured-project featured|
|Muskrat Cove Pipe Remediation and Streambank Stabilization|| |
Yonkers, New York , United States Biohabitats partnered with the Bronx River Alliance to assess potential design solutions for an eroding shoreline located on the Bronx River on the border between Yonkers and the Bronx. Stormwater flows caused the outfall headwall to fall into disrepair, created a scour hole in the stream, and eroded the opposite shoreline. Biohabitats approached the project by first developing a two-dimensional hydrodynamic model to gain an understanding of existing flow patterns and their effect on stream and bank stability. The model was then used to understand how flow patterns and stability would be affected by proposed design solutions. Biohabitats developed a cost-saving design that removed the headwall, stabilized the streambanks, created a rain garden to retain some stormwater flows, added scour protection, incorporated public access to the site, and established native vegetation in the riparian zone. To proceed with final design and construction, Biohabitats successfully worked with the Bronx River Alliance to secure a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Federation’s Bronx River Watershed Initiative, which provides funding for stormwater retrofit projects to address root causes of pollution from stormwater outfalls, with the goal of improving water quality and river ecology along the Bronx River. After completing the final designs, Biohabitats coordinated with federal, state, and local agencies to acquire the necessary permits for the project. The project was constructed in the summer of 2013 and planted in the fall of 2013. Educational signage, designed by Biohabitats, was also developed to enhance visitors’ understanding of the site and the adjacent rain garden.
|Muskrat Cove Pipe Remediation and Streambank Stabilization||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Yonkers, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|National Aquarium Master Plan||The National Aquarium desired to reimagine its upland space on Piers 3 and 4 along Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and refocus attention toward the water in the canal between them. In 2014, Biohabitats developed a suite of innovative technologies that provide habitat, restore ecological functions, and improve water quality in the canal. This project, which stemmed from campus master planning efforts was initially referred to as the “Ecoslip.” By re-envisioning its campus, the Aquarium aims to demonstrate a new model urban waterfront that not only enhances ecology but educates visitors by exhibiting the unique habitats found within the Chesapeake Bay. In 2015, Biohabitats worked with Ayers Saint Gross to further evaluate baseline conditions and develop a framework for monitoring the canal as it transforms into a Model Urban Waterfront. Biohabitats supported Ayers Saint Gross in advancing a conceptual design of the waterfront park that incorporated the innovative ecological interventions proposed with the Ecoslip. The project builds upon advances in eco-technologies that Biohabitats and partners have already implemented on the Harbor, including floating wetlands created with the Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore, Biohut® suspended oyster reefs installed with Ecocean and the Aquarium, and vertical wetland bulkhead designed with the University of Maryland. These and other technologies will be vetted and piloted at the Aquarium’s doorstep with final designs and implementation slated for 2017. Visited by millions of people per year, the Aquarium demonstrates through this project novel approaches that are both aesthetically pleasing and functional in delivering ecological services in an ultra-urban environment.||National Aquarium Master Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|National Dialogue on Decentralization of Water Infrastructure: Optimizing the Size & Scale of Water Services & Urban Water Management|| |
National Dialogue on Decentralization of Water Infrastructure: Optimizing the Size & Scale of Water Services & Urban Water ManagementRacine, Wisconsin , United States In March of 2014 Keith Bowers was invited to engage with other leaders from the water and related sectors to explore the potential for distributed water infrastructure systems to be integrated with or substituted for more traditional water infrastructure, with a focus on right-sizing the structure and scale of systems and services to optimize water, energy and sanitation management while achieving long-term sustainability and resilience. Held in Racine, Wisconsin at the Johnson Foundation at Wingspread, the event was convened in part by the Water Environment Federation and the Patel College of Global Sustainability, University of South Florida. The diverse group of experts selected for this national dialogue represented the perspectives of end users and operators (utilities), designers, equipment manufacturers, academics, water associations/research foundations, citizen advocates, and regulators/code enforcers. The group included those who had successfully implemented decentralized approaches in urban areas, those that were considering it, and those who may have been skeptical. Together, they examined the barriers, opportunities, and needs related to the role that distributed infrastructure can play in our nation’s long-term water and sanitation security. Key themes of the dialogue included: delineating the critical barriers to decentralization; understanding the success stories and how the barriers have been overcome; understanding the current state of technological approaches and next-generation solutions; identifying unanticipated consequences (e.g. concentrates, impacts on utilities, etc.); financing options for decentralized infrastructure; using decentralization as a means to integrated resource management; using decentralization as an element of more resilient water infrastructure; assessing the applicability of decentralized systems in existing infrastructure versus “greenfield” sites; transitioning from centralized to decentralized infrastructure and the optimization to “right-sized” systems; and gaining institutional and regulatory acceptance of decentralized solutions. The two plus days of dialogue, debate, and discussion led to the publishing of “Optimizing the Structure and Scale of
|National Dialogue on Decentralization of Water Infrastructure: Optimizing the Size & Scale of Water Services & Urban Water Management||Bioworks,||Racine, Wisconsin, United States||featured-project featured|
|National Fish And Wildlife Foundation–Technical Assistance Program|| |
Various locationsChesapeake Bay Watershed , United States Biohabitats is a Technical Assistance Provider to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and its partnering entities including the Bay Stewardship Fund, the Chesapeake NEMO (Network of Education and Municipal Officials) and the National Park Service. This program delivers appropriate technical assistance to both Chesapeake NEMO clients and stewardship fund grantees on an as-needed basis to quickly address challenges and opportunities as they arise. Biohabitats is a Technical Assistance Provider for habitat restoration including coastal and riparian habitat issues. In this program Biohabitats is available to provide expertise to community groups, local governments and others engaged in restoration, conservation and watershed planning. Under this contract, Biohabitats has successfully executed several projects focused on addressing stormwater and erosion control best practices, green infrastructure opportunities, and coastal ecological restoration needs. For example, biohabitats helped the community of Oyster Harbor, MD address low-lying coastal community resource issues related to drainage, flooding, ponding, storm surge vulnerability, protection from erosion, localized improvement of water quality, and retrofit and restoration opportunity identification. After reviewing issues, needs and goals with community representatives, Biohabitats assessed site conditions and developed recommendations for future implementation. Biohabitats met with the community group to present the results of the study and provided recommendations for collaboration with other potential stakeholder organizations (including the County). Biohabitats also identified additional grant funding sources to support implementation.
|National Fish And Wildlife Foundation–Technical Assistance Program||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Various locations, Chesapeake Bay Watershed, United States||featured-project featured|
|Natural Municipal Wastewater Treatment System|| |
Ouray, Colorado , United States When the City of Ouray decided to upgrade their wastewater infrastructure in 1992, they turned to Biohabitats to employ a natural systems approach to provide high quality effluent for discharge into the Uncompahgre River, create habitat/sanctuary for birds, reduce odors, and to be aesthetically pleasing. The resultant wastewater treatment facility, at the time the largest of its kind at this elevation and within the State of Colorado, combines the technologies of aerated lagoons and constructed wetlands. Located at 7,480 feet in the San Juan Mountains of Southwestern Colorado, the facility needed to be robust enough to function at high elevation with extreme wintertime lows. The treatment facility is designed for a flow of 363,000 gallons per day. Primary treatment is provided by a partial mix, two cell aerated lagoon, which is operated to provide substantial reduction of organic loading prior to polishing in the wetlands. The wetlands’ cells are designed to complete treatment to surface water discharge standards. Operating data showed that the system was efficient at reducing fecal coliform counts, therefore minimizing pressure on and improving the efficiency of the chlorine disinfection system.
|Natural Municipal Wastewater Treatment System||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Ouray, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Nearshore Aquatic and Terrestrial Ecological Assessment of Whiskey Island|| |
Cleveland, Ohio , United States Whiskey Island sits on the western edge of downtown Cleveland, where the Cuyahoga River enters Lake Erie. Since it was first settled, Whiskey Island has been modified for human uses that are identifiable on the landscape today. From the mid-1800s through the latter part of the 20th century, the island contained a foundry and was used as a transfer point for iron ore, coal, salt, and limestone between the Great Lakes and railroads leading inland. A U.S. Coast Guard station, constructed in the 1940s and operational until 1970, is still in place today. A marina was constructed on the island in 1993. After purchasing a portion of Whiskey Island in 2004, Cuyahoga County removed industrial debris, cleared a portion of the beach, established trails, and officially opened Wendy Park. Spanning 22 acres, it is the only public park in Cuyahoga County that provides direct access to Lake Erie and the Cuyahoga River. Since its opening, Wendy Park has become increasingly popular. A management plan was initiated to help maintain the park’s natural character and preserve the visitor’s recreational experience. Biohabitats led an ecological inventory and assessment to support the development of the management plan. This included a literature and data review of ecological resources, a terrestrial assessment of vegetation and wildlife, and an assessment of nearshore aquatic habitats which included aquatic vegetation and morphology. The information helped guide the master plan planning process by identifying opportunities to regenerate natural areas, and suggesting innovative ways to manage rainwater and runoff, create and manage functional landscapes, and help facilitate and manage public access. These elements, which were incorporated into the management plan (published in July 2012), will help more people enjoy Cleveland’s Lake Erie waterfront.
|Nearshore Aquatic and Terrestrial Ecological Assessment of Whiskey Island||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Ecological Restoration,||Cleveland, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Nemours Mansion & Gardens Water Management Plan|| |
Wilmington, Delaware , United States The former estate of Alfred I. du Pont, the Nemours Mansion and Gardens include an arboretum, woodlands, meadows over 225 acres of gardens designed to complement French domestic architecture of the eighteenth century. This important historic and cultural resource provides an excellent example of the Beaux-Arts movement in American landscape architecture. Sustainable land and water planning have become an important focus for the Nemours Mansion and Gardens. New approaches are being devised for the next century of stewardship of this important cultural asset. Existing facilities are being restored and repaired with the goal of minimizing water demand while maintaining and restoring the original character of the gardens in mind. During the development of a Master Action Plan which identified areas in the gardens that required immediate attention, it became apparent that a comprehensive water management plan was needed. Biohabitats, working in collaboration with Rodney Robinson Landscape Architects and the Nemours Foundation team, developed a Water Master Plan which addressed issues associated with stormwater, water use in reflecting pools, pond habitat, pond edge restoration, water demand, and overall seasonal irrigation demand. To minimize demand for municipal potable water, Biohabitats developed additional on-site water supplies from well water, stormwater harvest, groundwater recharge, and use of reclaimed water from the adjacent Children’s Hospital. This collaborative venture fused landscape architecture, planning, ecological engineering, and cultural resource management in a dynamic and progressive fashion.
|Nemours Mansion & Gardens Water Management Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Wilmington, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Nereid Shoreline Stabilization|| |
Rutherford, New Jersey , United States The Nereid Boat Club, established in 1866, was reconstructed in the 1990s with a bulkhead along its Passaic River shoreline. Not long after its construction, the bulkhead began to deteriorate. Also during that time, severe flooding occurred on a more frequent basis in the area. Rather than simply reconstructing the failing bulkhead, the Club called on Biohabitats to design a more cost-effective and ecologically sound alternative. After a thorough site analysis, which included studies of soil and sediment, Biohabitats discovered that upland stormwater forces, rather than river forces, were compromising the bulkhead. To resolve the site’s stormwater management problems, Biohabitats designed a natural system featuring a rain garden and a living shoreline. Using native plantings, strategic grading, and ecological restoration techniques, Biohabitats designed, constructed, and installed a “living shoreline” to replace the dilapidated bulkhead. This new shoreline simultaneously prevents further erosion, enhances stormwater management and local ecology, and restores the river bank to a more natural state.
|Nereid Shoreline Stabilization||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Rutherford, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|New Hanover County Greenways Master Plan|| |
Wilmington, North Carolina , United States When both the New Hanover County’s Master Plan for Parks, Recreation and Open Space and the Coastal Area Management Act Plan recommended a greenways master plan for Wilmington and outlying areas, the Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (WMPO), responsible for creating creating such a master plan, sought guidance from the team of Biohabitats, Alta-Greenways, and Sage Landscape Architects. Biohabitats began by field-reviewing large sections of the proposed greenway alignment, which traversed natural and less developed areas. Biohabitats then documented potential jurisdictional natural resources (wetlands and streams) and identified potential for flooding, natural resource educational opportunities, and infrastructure constraints. Biohabitats also contributed recommendations related to conservation best management practices for greenways, including sustainable alignment considerations near sensitive natural resources, construction considerations, and vegetation management. Additionally, Biohabitats provided guidance on bike trail best management practices, trail construction, and trail maintenance. The additional planned greenway will enhance transportation/commuting options, passive and active recreation, and ecological and cultural education opportunities.
|New Hanover County Greenways Master Plan||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Wilmington, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|New Jersey Highlands: Critical Habitat Mitigation Strategies|| |
New Jersey Highlands, New Jersey , United States The New Jersey Highlands Region spans nearly 860,000 acres of the state’s northwestern land. With a vast range of geographic and geologic features and natural habitats, the Highlands Region provides a significant green belt around the metropolitan East Coast. To protect this region, the New Jersey Highlands Council, in its 2008 “Highlands Regional Master Plan,” established a goal of no net loss of critical habitat value. To assist the Council in working towards this goal, Biohabitats developed a series of Mitigation Strategy guidance documents. The guidance documents are intended to help the Council and the municipalities it directs restore ecological function and processes to impaired or disturbed critical habitat, and ensure that no net loss of existing critical habitat value occurs given future development and infrastructure maintenance. To produce the Mitigation Strategy guidance documents, Biohabitats performed a literature review, developed innovative mitigation techniques, and generated three examples which applied the guidance to specific types of critical habitat found within the Highlands Region. The literature review involved analysis of current scientific standards, protocols, peer-reviewed research and currently accepted theories. To ensure that the most up-to-date research and practices were captured, industry experts were interviewed regarding their latest assessment and mitigation techniques and ongoing research. Biohabitats developed mitigation techniques which recognize the unique nature and locational dependency of the Highlands region’s critical habitats and the need to approach mitigation from various scales. This included a framework for making landscape-level decisions that concurs with the Council’s Master Plan, integrates participatory planning and recognizes environmental uncertainty such as climate change. Biohabitats then provided three examples of how the strategies could be applied to a freshwater wetland area, grassland area and forested area. These included step-by-step instructions for future users to assess potential impacts to habitats and values and create
|New Jersey Highlands: Critical Habitat Mitigation Strategies||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||New Jersey Highlands, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiative–Neighborhood Demonstration Areas|| |
New York City, New York , United States In 2007, the New York City Mayor’s office released PlaNYC a groundbreaking, multi-agency effort to address long-term challenges, including changing climate conditions and an aging combined sewer system. Biohabitats provided assessment, analysis and design services to the City’s Department of Environmental Protection to support the PlaNYC’s promotion of green infrastructure to reduce combined sewer overflows. Building upon pilot scale success, this effort focused on scaling up implementation to the neighborhood scale, where a combination of on lot practices at public housing sites and right-of-way bioswales were constructed. Biohabitats was lead designer for the on lot practices. The work involved field reconnaissance, design, and the development of full construction plans for a range of green infrastructure practices, including bioretention, permeable pavement, and underground storage/infiltration chambers. Biohabitats also helped monitor the impact of the designs on reducing flow in the combined sewer system. Installed at the Seth Low and Hope Gardens public housing complexes in Brooklyn, the green infrastructure practices were designed to manage one inch of runoff from a minimum of 10% of the impervious surfaces within the neighborhood areas. They also add beauty, wildlife habitat, and the rare opportunity to interact with nature in these densely urban communities.
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiative–Neighborhood Demonstration Areas||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiatives– BMP Pilots|| |
New York City, New York , United States Biohabitats, along with joint venture partners, is working with New York City Department of Environmental Protection to implement a variety of stormwater best management practices throughout the City. The pilots involve retrofitting buildings, paved areas, and parking lots to demonstrate the effectiveness of green infrastructure for slowing and reducing stormwater runoff that enters the combined sewer system. The pilots are also being designed to treat stormwater before it enters the sewer system, provide more pervious surfaces, improve drainage, improve habitat, and reduce heat island effects. The pilot sites will be monitored to document their effectiveness. The results will provide specific information about feasible inflow/outflow rates, water quality treatment potential and the overall cost effectiveness of green infrastructure given New York City’s climatic and environmental conditions. The monitoring data will be used to develop effective green infrastructure designs and implementation strategies that can provide stormwater benefits, reduce urban heat island effects, and improve urban wildlife habitat and neighborhood aesthetics.
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiatives– BMP Pilots||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiatives– Ecological Pilot Projects|| |
New York City, New York , United States Working with our joint venture partners, Biohabitats is leading the effort to implement a range of ecosystem restoration pilot projects within the Jamaica Bay watershed in New York City. These pilot projects were identified as part of the Jamaica Bay Watershed Protection Plan, which is focused on cleaning the water of the Bay and reestablishing previously lost ecosystems. A range of projects is being pursued. Efforts that have occurred include harvesting macroalgae from the Bay interior to convert to biofuel, introducing algal turf scrubber technology at a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP), placement of eel grass plantings, installation of an oyster bed and oyster reef balls, and installation of floating wetland wave attenuators. Algal turf scrubbers® (ATS™) are unique wastewater treatment devices that mimic a stream ecosystem in a constructed environment designed to promote the growth of algae. Harnessing the natural abilities of algae, bacteria, and phytoplankton to remove pollutants from water, the system filters nutrients from a small portion of the effluent from a WWTP. The microalgae from the Algal turf scrubbers are periodically harvested and can be used as a source of biofuel, along with the macroalgae harvested from the Bay, creating a sustainable, “green” technology. Efforts to reestablish eelgrass and oysters within the Bay are ongoing. To date, approximately 1,000 eelgrass plants, an oyster bed and oyster reef balls have been installed in the Bay. Additional eelgrass plantings are planned.
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiatives– Ecological Pilot Projects||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiatives– Jamaica Bay Watershed Ecological Atlas|| |
New York City, New York , United States The Jamaica Bay watershed contains one of the largest coastal wetland ecosystems in New York, provides habitat for wildlife, and acts as a protective buffer to Brooklyn and Queens in the event of a storm. In accordance with the Jamaica Bay Watershed Protection Plan, the New York City Department of Environmental Protection contracted Biohabitats to inventory the lands within the watershed that are owned by city agencies and to assess them for both ecological restoration and stormwater management potential. Biohabitats used GIS to create a comprehensive database of the watershed’s ecology, landcover, hydrology and infrastructure. After using these data to locate vacant lands, Biohabitats staff conducted field surveys of over 2,000 city-owned lots, developed sketches of their existing conditions, and created GIS data for proposed restorations and stormwater management practices at each site. These data were then incorporated into the database. The mapping product is a living document that can easily be updated and used by restoration practitioners to compare sites and track projects. The next step was to create site selection metrics and a prioritization scheme to close in on the best sites for restoration and conservation. To narrow the hundreds of parcels into an actionable and prioritized list, Biohabitats staff developed transparent site-selection criteria and a prioritization scheme based on a combination of GIS data and the information gathered during the field assessments. The site selection model is executable within GIS, and is extremely versatile. It allows for adding and removing variables as needed and weighting the variables according to their desired importance. It was also accurate. The final model was able to classify over 90% of sites to match subjectively assessed control sites. Biohabitats generated new data and a concise analysis for thousands of vacant parcels, and provided NYCDEP with robust tools for future
|New York City CSO-PlaNYC Green Infrastructure Initiatives– Jamaica Bay Watershed Ecological Atlas||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|New York City Green Roof Implementation Services|| |
New York City, New York , United States Much of the pollution in New York City’s Jamaica Bay comes from overflow that occurs when heavy rains overwhelm the City’s combined stormwater/sanitary sewer systems. To address this problem and support the restoration of Jamaica Bay, the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has committed to reducing stormwater volume. As one component of this effort, DEP is targeting 10% of the City’s impervious areas for treatment of rainfall by 2030. Recognizing the ability of green roofs to capture rainfall, slow runoff, and provide opportunities for evapotranspiration, particularly in densely developed watersheds, DEP sought assistance in exploring the feasibily of city-wide green roof implementation. Biohabitats prepared an internal report for DEP on the Jamaica Bay Watershed which examined existing green roof projects, provided conceptual planning of multiple implementation strategies, defined the holistic benefits of green roof systems, and investigated life cycle costs. The report serves as planning tool for DEP as to the applicability and benefits of green roofs in the Jamaica Bay Watershed. Biohabitats also helped create a New York City stormwater management design manual, which documents appropriate design and construction procedures for green roofs and other surface and subsurface detention devices. As part of this effort, Biohabitats performed a code review to determine critical factors to consider in green roof retrofits. Biohabitats is currently designing a green roof system for a New York City public school as part of the City’s stormwater pilot program. The site will not only retain stormwater, but also provide a hands-on opportunity for students, faculty, and the surrounding community to learn about green roof technology, urban ecology, and how human actions can impact the environment.
|New York City Green Roof Implementation Services||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|New York City Long Term Control Plan Stormwater BMP Assessment Project|| |
New York City, New York , United States Biohabitats assessed opportunities to employ stormwater best management practices (BMP) that will mitigate the quantity and quality of stormwater runoff entering New York City’s entire combined sewer system. Given identified opportunities and constraints for this ultra-urban area, Biohabitats considered a wide array of technologies including collection, filtering and treatment systems, non-structural and structural strategies; changes in existing maintenance and management practices; education tools and stakeholder awareness programs, to changes in development regulations, architectural guidelines and land use policies. New emerging technologies were also explored (green roof canopy concepts, green corridors, etc.) along with “out-of-the-box” ideas that are tailored to New York City’s ultra-urban infrastructure and unique environmental conditions. Biohabitats conducted both office and field assessments of potential locations within each of the catchment areas of the study area that could support the refined list of stormwater BMP technologies. Biohabitats then prepared a refined GIS layer illustrating potential stormwater BMP sites and associated technologies. Finally, Biohabitats prepared a report documenting the methodologies, findings and recommendations of this study. This thorough approach will allow the development of a comprehensive long term approach toward mitigating the stormwater management problems plaguing New York’s five boroughs.
|New York City Long Term Control Plan Stormwater BMP Assessment Project||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Nine Mile Creek Watershed Improvement|| |
South Euclid, Ohio , United States The Langerdale detention basin, owned and operated by the City of South Euclid, Ohio, is an on-line flood control basin draining 7.6 square miles in the Nine Mile Creek watershed. Built in the early 1960s as a traditional “dry pond,” the basin relegated the stream to a concrete channel. The basin included a system that allowed any overflow to flow directly down Langerdale Boulevard through a secondary spillway structure. Since its creation, the detention basin had overflowed twice, causing flooding to adjacent homes. Recognizing the value of Nine Mile Creek as a tributary to Lake Erie and as a critical component of the community’s green infrastructure, the City launched an effort to restore this urban stream, beginning with a retrofit of the detention basin. Biohabitats worked closely with the City of South Euclid to develop a concept and ultimately a final design package to retrofit the basin. The design increased treatment and storage areas, introduced naturally vegetated wetland areas, restored the channelized drainage way to a natural channel, and created areas for aquatic habitat. To maximize the detention time of the first flush of runoff, Biohabitats designed a series of wetland pools separated by low crested earthen weirs. This approach was developed with the parallel goals of maximizing storage volume, augmenting aquatic habitat and minimizing long term maintenance. In 2008, the City completed construction of the basin, which required excavating 14,000 cubic yards of soil, installing 14 floodweirs and open-water pools, and planting five vegetation zones. The planting zones included aquatic bed and open water wetland, scrub-shrub emergent wetland, forested wetland, riparian deciduous forest and native mesic meadow.
|Nine Mile Creek Watershed Improvement||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||South Euclid, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Nine Mile Run Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration|| |
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania , United States “Perhaps the most striking opportunity noted for a large park is the valley of Nine Mile Run,” wrote renowned landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. in his 1911 Master Plan.* Over the next 90 years, the Nine Mile Run valley was under constant assault from both urban and industrial development. Crumbling and leaking infrastructure, encroaching urban development and over 20 million tons of slag all found their way into the Nine Mile Run stream valley. In the early 2000s, Pittsburgh City Government officials began exploring new uses of the site. One of the products of this exploration was a bold vision to restore the ecological integrity of Nine Mile Run and establish a permanent greenway connection between Frick Park and the Monongahela River. Under the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Section 206 Ecosystem Restoration program, Biohabitats was commissioned to develop a comprehensive ecological restoration plan for Nine Mile Run and its riparian corridor. Biohabitats helped prepare an Ecosystem Restoration Report and Environmental Assessment and then developed a comprehensive ecological restoration design and construction package for the project. The project included stream channel restoration, stream channel daylighting, wetland restoration, riparian habitat restoration, invasive species management, water quality best management practices, and park infrastructure improvements including athletic fields, trails and interpretive signs. *Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. (1911) Pittsburgh Main Thoroughfares and the Down Town District; Improvements Necessary to Meet the City’s Present and Future Needs. Pittsburgh Civic Commission Report.
|Nine Mile Run Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration||Ohio River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Nixon Farm Mitigation Site|| |
Howard County, Maryland , United States To meet aggressive mitigation goals, the Maryland State Highway Administration sought to provide stream and wetland restoration along 36 acres of reclaimed agricultural land and an incised tributary adjacent to the Middle Patuxent River. By assessing the stream and wetlands and monitoring groundwater, Biohabitats determined anthropogenic ditching and pond development had contributed to compromised water resources and channel incision in the Middle Branch Patuxent River and its tributary. Rather than “chasing” the groundwater with large excavation efforts, Biohabitats developed a design based on minimal grading and creative modifications to surface water drainage patterns. This approach raises the groundwater table, extends near-surface saturation, and preserves existing on-site floodplain forest and wetlands. Biohabitats also integrated “regenerative stormwater conveyance” principles with more traditional stream restoration techniques to improve channel-floodplain connections. The design involved redirecting tributary flow into the site with a new channel design; plugging a historic agricultural drainage ditch at critical locations; modifying an existing pond; installing bentonite plugs along the abandoned tributary to form vernal pools; and creating shallow depressions and berms to restore wetlands, surface streams, groundwater resources, and floodplain connection. Biohabitats also provided construction management services to ensure compliance with the design intent and to address any unexpected field conditions. Early monitoring efforts suggest that the project is having significant positive effects on the groundwater and wetland hydrology of the floodplain, and will expand wetland distribution and extend wetland hydroperiod. The project is generating 7.5 acres of wetland, 1,300 lf of stream, and 8.4 acres of forest creation, enhancement, and preservation mitigation credits, as well as extensive bioretention. Due to the creative measures employed in the design, the project mitigation and bioretention value is estimated at twice the actual project cost.
|Nixon Farm Mitigation Site||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Howard County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|North Delaware Riverfront Greenway–Lardner’s Point Park|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States The North Delaware Riverfront Greenway–Lardner’s Point Project converts an industrial riverfront into an ecologically rich and sustainable greenway park. It is part of a corridor that spans more than 10 miles along the Delaware Riverfront in northeastern Philadelphia. The park will add four acres to the City’s inventory of open space–a major goal of Philadelphia Parks & Recreation’s Green2015 plan. To bring the transformation to life, the Biohabitats team assessed the site, developed schematic design recommendations, and prepared a final design and construction package for a park along the greenway corridor and trail network that will ultimately connect the site with future parks to the northeast and southwest. The greenway design incorporates many habitat enhancement and restoration components, including meadow creation, riparian woodland plantings, wetland enhancement and invasive species management. The waterfront portion of the park is protected and enhanced by a ‘living shoreline’ where native riparian and marsh plants provide stabilization, habitat, and localized water quality improvement. In addition to park amenities such as a walking trail loop and picnicking areas, the design integrates many ecologically sound, sustainable design elements, including solar lighting and porous pavers that facilitate retention and filtration of stormwater.
|North Delaware Riverfront Greenway–Lardner’s Point Park||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|North Korea Seminar on Forest and Landscape Restoration||In March of 2012, Biohabitats president Keith Bowers was invited by the Pyongyang International Information Center on New Technology and Economy (PIINTEC) and the Environmental Education Media Project (EEMP), an international NGO based in Beijing, to participate in an International Seminar on Forest and Landscape Restoration in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPKR), more commonly known as North Korea. The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) was instrumental in providing funding for the seminar, the first international conference in DPRK since Kim Jong Un took power in December of 2011. The seminar’s primary purpose was to exchange technical information with 85 of North Korea’s leading scientists and top government officials on best management practices for restoring degraded landscapes and improving the country’s food security. Our delegation consisted of 14 ecological restoration practitioners, researcher experts and policy-makers from around the world. The delegation concluded that restoring North Korea’s destroyed environment will take time, resources and money, but it can be done. To improve people’s lives and the landscape, the group recommended that two types of restoration be given priority: biodiversity and agro-forestry focused on food, fiber, and wood. The delegation agreed that the restoration of the North Korean landscape held great potential to lift people out of poverty, enhance the region’s food security and ecology, and catalyze further positive change despite the repressive control of its leaders.||North Korea Seminar on Forest and Landscape Restoration||Bioworks,||Pyongyang, Korea, Democratic People's Republic of||featured-project featured|
|Odum School of Ecology Design|| |
Athens, Georgia , United States The University of Georgia’s contributions to the science of ecology date to the 1950s. The Odum School of Ecology, the only free-standing school of ecology in the country, is named for the University’s own ecological pioneer Eugene Odum, who is credited with making the word “ecosystem” a household word. When the need for a new facility to house the School arose, the University hired BNIM Architects and Biohabitats to develop a state-of-the art regenerative design for the building. Its sustainable components included green roofs, green walls, eco-machines for waste treatment, rooftop photovoltaic cells for renewable energy sources, water reuse systems for conservation, native plant landscaping, demonstration areas for sustainable lawn and ground cover tests, organic and container gardening tests and other regenerative design features. Captured rainwater and eco-machine effluent will be used for irrigation and for contributing flow to a stream through the courtyard that demonstrates the connections to the nearby Oconee River and its watershed.
|Odum School of Ecology Design||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Athens, Georgia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Office of Green Infrastructure Research & Design|| |
New York City, New York , United States In 2009, recognizing the potential to apply green infrastructure strategies in addition to grey infrastructure to improve water quality in New York Harbor, New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) developed a citywide Green Infrastructure (GI) program. The program included green infrastructure strategies such as biofiltration systems, detention/retention systems, green and blue roofs, porous pavement, and constructed wetlands. As part of a multi-disciplinary team led by Arcadis, Biohabitats is working with the City to implement that plan. Building on ongoing monitoring and data collection by DEP and others, the team is providing research and development related to more than 20 constructed pilot projects. Goals include expanding and improving DEP’s monitoring program and developing and implementing a GI Monitoring Protocol; developing data-driven recommendations for the GI program at multiple scales in various conditions; preparing cost analyses of current and proposed GI designs; developing guidance regarding maintenance; providing recommendations for improving the performance of GI practices; and evaluating and quantifying co-benefits.
|Office of Green Infrastructure Research & Design||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|OGI Design Green Infrastructure Design Services|| |
New York City, New York , United States
|OGI Design Green Infrastructure Design Services||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States|
|OGI Design Green Infrastructure Design Services|| |
New York City, New York , United States In 2007, the New York City Mayor’s office released PlaNYC, a groundbreaking, multi-agency effort to address New York City’s long-term challenges, including changing climate conditions and an aging combined sewer system. This ultimately led to the development of the “NYC Green Infrastructure Plan,” a multi-agency effort to design, construct and maintain a variety of sustainable green infrastructure practices such as green roofs, rain gardens, and right-of-way bioswales on City owned property such as streets, sidewalks, schools, and public housing. Biohabitats is helping the City to select sites and develop design solutions for stormwater green infrastructure projects across hundreds of locations within high priority sewer areas. Right-of-Way Bioswales Planters filled with native vegetation and a specially designed soil mix installed within public sidewalks to slow down and hold stormwater so it can slowly infiltrate into the ground rather than rush into storm drains and into the combined sewer system. Stormwater Green Streets Areas planted with a specially designed soil mix and native plants enable the storage and infiltration of stormwater directly within underutilized portions of the roadway. On-Site Green Infrastructure Customized stormwater management strategies which slow down, hold, and slowly release stormwater while adding beauty, habitat and learning opportunities on City-owned property such as schools, public housing, and parks.
|OGI Design Green Infrastructure Design Services||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||New York City, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ohio Canal Interceptor Tunnel Overflow Outfall and Associated Sewer and Restoration Project: Restoration/Compensatory Mitigation Plan (Little Cuyahoga River)|| |
Ohio Canal Interceptor Tunnel Overflow Outfall and Associated Sewer and Restoration Project: Restoration/Compensatory Mitigation Plan (Little Cuyahoga River)City of Akron
Akron, Ohio , United States After suffering from more than 200 years of human modifications to its hydrology and taking a pounding from increased stormwater runoff from its surrounding urban landscape, the Little Cuyahoga River along a stretch of the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail had suffered a cyclical pattern of channel degradation and bank erosion. Evidence of the damage was abundant: a 7-foot drop caused by a perched, concrete-encased sewer crossing, undermined rip rap, and vertical eroding banks measuring as high as 10 feet. To help the City of Akron address the degraded stream and proposed OCIT outfall impacts, Biohabitats was asked to prepare a restoration/compensatory mitigation plan. Biohabitats developed a design that would not only achieve specific goals such as bank stabilization and safe conveyance of 100-year flows, but also improve the ecological conditions of the Little Cuyahoga River. The design, focused on restoring fish migration by removing a concrete encased sewer line which crossed the site and maximizing the benefits of bioengineering, also restores aquatic and riparian habitat, improves water quality, and allows the Little Cuyahoga River riparian zone to better function as a wildlife corridor. The design also enhances the towpath user experience, by creating a “green” corridor of native vegetation along the River, as opposed to rip rap. Biohabitats shepherded the project from the initial geomorphic assessment through concept development and permitting strategy to final design document production. The project is scheduled for construction in fall 2018, spring of 2019.
|Ohio Canal Interceptor Tunnel Overflow Outfall and Associated Sewer and Restoration Project: Restoration/Compensatory Mitigation Plan (Little Cuyahoga River)||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Akron, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ohio University Master Plan|| |
Athens, Ohio , United States In 2014, Ohio University, known for its leadership in sustainability, experienced a surge of growth. To address this growth and maintain highest quality academic and campus experience, while also ensuring that future growth would happen sustainably, Ohio University initiated an update to its Comprehensive Master Plan. As the ecological and landscape sustainability lead on a master planning team led by Ayers Saint Gross, Biohabitats provided guidance on ways to maximize opportunities presented by new construction and renovations to integrate ecological function and green infrastructure practices throughout the campus landscape. After performing data assessment and site reconnaissance, Biohabitats met with staff from campus grounds, facilities, and sustainability offices, as well as faculty and students, to share observations about the campus’ conditions, including its vast ecological resources, and its potential to support improved ecological function, clean water, and resilience. All opportunities presented were also responsive to limitations on staffing and fiscal pragmatism. Much of Ohio University’s main campus lies within the floodplain of the Hocking River, which was channelized after historic flooding in the mid-1960s. A remnant of the original river bed, an oxbow stream, now runs through the center of campus. Biohabitats pointed out that these two waterways provide much of the ecological and hydrological bones of the campus, and significant potential for enhancement as green infrastructure is considered with new building projects. Biohabitats also identified opportunities to increase tree canopy coverage for which the University’s Athens campus is known, with a more diverse, native plan palette that ties into the regional ecology. The final master plan celebrates the relationship between the campus and the Hocking River corridor, and as the campus grows, so will a greater awareness of ecology that informs its integrated landscape designs that serves multiple functions.
|Ohio University Master Plan||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Athens, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge Post-fire Invasive Plant Surveillance|| |
Southeast Area, Georgia , United States Occupying over 402,000 acres, the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge is located in one of the largest blackwater swamps in North America. Periodic fires and elevation differences, have created a unique mosaic of plant communities, including open prairie, cypress bays, hardwood forests, and pine uplands. As fire is central to the health of the Okefenokee ecosystem, but potentially damaging to surrounding private timberlands and residential communities, fire containment within the refuge is an important management strategy of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. During the spring of 2007 this strategy was put to the test as a series of fires burned approximately 400,000 acres. Crews were mobilized from across the country to create a fire perimeter and limit damage to private property. This fire eventually turned into the most expensive suppression effort ever undertaken by the USFWS. Recognizing that the earthmoving activities, creation of firebreaks, and the influx of equipment from across the U.S. could potentially create opportunities for invasive plants to become established within the refuge, the USFWS contracted with Biohabitats ISM partner Invasive Plant Control (IPC) Inc. to undertake post-fire surveillance of the refuge boundary and fire staging areas. Biohabitats ISM, in conjunction with IPC, circumnavigated the entire perimeter of the refuge in order to visually assess infestations of invasive vegetation. While the operation was conducted in difficult terrain over an extensive area, Biohabitats was able to successfully identify and prioritize areas of newly established, undesirable vegetation. The early detection of invasive plant populations allows the Refuge to cost-effectively contain and potentially eradicate new infestations. It also provides the Refuge with the baseline information needed to properly assess invasive plant risk during future fire response efforts.
|Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge Post-fire Invasive Plant Surveillance||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Southeast Area, Georgia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Omega Center for Sustainable Living Wastewater Treatment System|| |
Rhinebeck, New York , United States The Omega Center for Sustainable Living is a new wastewater treatment and environmental education facility located at the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, a New York-based wellness center. BNIM Architects designed a new 6,200 square foot facility on a 4.5 acre site to house the ecological wastewater treatment facility and provide the dual functions of education and inspiration. The natural wastewater treatment facility was designed together with John Todd Ecological Design (JTED) to replace the Institute’s existing wastewater infrastructure, which consisted of a network of aging septic systems. The 52,000 gallon per day wastewater treatment system is a low energy and low maintenance system with six treatment steps. Components include primary treatment, an anoxic tank, subsurface flow constructed wetlands, an indoor aerated lagoon, a recirculating sand filter and subsurface dispersal. The effluent water quality meets all of the State of New York water quality standards for the land application/subsurface disposal of treated effluent. This allows the Institute to potentially reuse the water to irrigate 2.5 acres of the campus using a pressure-dosed subsurface irrigation system in the future. The Omega Institute will use the wastewater facility as a teaching tool in their educational program designed around the ecological impact of their campus. The facility has been operational since July, 2009. The facility was awarded the AIA COTE ‘Top 10 Green Projects’ and LEED Platinum certification in 2010. The building was also one of the world’s first (one of two) certified Living Buildings.
|Omega Center for Sustainable Living Wastewater Treatment System||Hudson River Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Rhinebeck, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Omega Institute Master Ecological Planning & Assessment Services|| |
Rhinebeck, New York , United States After Biohabitats provided design support for a wastewater treatment wetland at the Omega Center for Sustainable Living, the Omega Institute called on Biohabitats to develop an ecological master plan for its 200-acre property. The property includes a wide array of natural resources, including a rare bog lake, hardwood forests, streams, and wetlands. This unique suite of natural resources provides the backdrop for a retreat center devoted to human wellness and awakening the human spirit. Biohabitats created an ecological master plan that assesses the existing stream, wetland, and forest resources; examines the landscape ecological context; and develops an adaptive management framework for future stewardship and ecological enhancement. The forest assessment included analyzing the groundcover, understory, and overstory; identifying species and determining the relative abundance of invasive species; and compiling the existing or potential threats and stressors to the forest. Biohabitats collected data related to the vegetation, hydrologic regime, and soils in order to assess the character and condition of the wetlands and analyzed the property’s stream resources through a qualitative assessment of physical and habitat parameters and a quantitative sediment analysis. These assessments are the basis for an adaptive management framework and ecological action plan that will guide Biohabitats and the Omega Institute as they continue to collaborate in its implementation. Biohabitats also participated in the Omega Institute’s premier year of their Ecological Literacy Immersion Program in the summer of 2013, teaching sessions on forestry, stormwater management, and landscape ecological design and planning. As part of this program, Biohabitats designed and, with the help of program participants, constructed a rain garden outside of the Dining Hall that enhances the property’s aesthetic and creates new habitat as it treats stormwater.
|Omega Institute Master Ecological Planning & Assessment Services||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Rhinebeck, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Omnilife Stadium 100% Wastewater Treatment & Reuse|| |
GuadalajaraJalisco , Mexico With a seating capacity of 49,850, Omnilife Stadium is Mexico’s fourth largest stadium. It is also the first major stadium with a total wastewater treatment and reuse system. Approximately 136,000 gallons (515 cubic meters) of wastewater is collected from the stadium during each game. Wastewater is equalized and metered out at 20,000 gallons per day into an onsite treatment system. The unique treatment system, designed by Biohabitats, utilizes trickling filters, constructed wetlands, and sand filters to purify the water. Treated water is disinfected before being utilized in the stadium for toilet flushing, irrigation, and stadium washdown.
|Omnilife Stadium 100% Wastewater Treatment & Reuse||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico||featured-project featured|
|Orleans–Floating Wetlands Feasibility Study|| |
Orleans, Massachusetts , United States Biohabitats is helping AECOM provide water quality and wastewater planning and engineering services to reduce excessive nitrogen discharges to the Town of Orleans’ ponds, estuaries and embayments. The first implementation of a “Hybrid” approach under the Cape Cod 208 Water Quality Plan, approved by USEPA and MassDEP, the project consists of conceptual and preliminary design to update the town’s 2011 Comprehensive Wastewater Management Plan to reflect its 2015 Consensus Plan (Water Quality Management Plan). The goal is to minimize the proposed sewered footprint (area of Town and number of properties to be sewered) to the greatest extent possible by maximizing the use of several the non-traditional technologies: Coastal Habitat Restoration, Aquaculture, Floating Constructed Wetlands, and Permeable Reactive Barriers. The Project includes two areas for sewers: (1) about 280 parcels encompassing Downtown Orleans (100,000 gpd) to be treated at a new wastewater treatment facility and groundwater effluent disposal area; and (2) about 360 parcels within the Meetinghouse Pond sub-watershed (50,000 GPD), to be treated at a new satellite treatment facility and groundwater effluent disposal area. A variety of collection, treatment, and disposal system alternatives are being evaluated. The team is also evaluating septage handling, treatment and disposal requirements as much of the town will continue to rely on septic systems. The septage facility may be developed with sufficient capacity to handle regional needs of the lower Cape. The project also includes conceptual design for three non-traditional demonstration projects to be implemented in 2016 to determine the feasibility of full scale installation. Tasks include siting, engineering design, initial permitting, cost estimating and development of monitoring plans. The monitoring plans will be incorporated into an overall Adaptive Management Plan which will evaluate the impacts of the technologies on reducing nitrogen. The project team is working closely with stakeholders and regulators to
|Orleans–Floating Wetlands Feasibility Study||Regenerative Design,||Orleans, Massachusetts, United States||featured-project featured|
|Oyster Harbor Natural Drainage Assessment and Planning Project|| |
Oyster Harbor, Maryland , United States Through an effort funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Biohabitats developed recommendations for natural drainage retrofits and habitat enhancements for Oyster Harbor, a community located on Annapolis Neck in Anne Arundel County, Maryland. Oyster Harbor faces a number of common yet challenging management issues related to conveyance and treatment of runoff within the roadway right-of-way and on private lots. Oyster Harbor’s location on the Chesapeake Bay adds another layer of factors including low relief, high groundwater, interaction with wetlands, and coastal resiliency concerns. Working with community residents, Biohabitats carried out three days of field assessments to identify issues and opportunities related to roadway drainage and water quality improvement, on-lot stormwater management, and habitat enhancement. Biohabitats staff also performed an initial investigation of soil conditions to determine implications for retrofit and restoration strategies. Oyster Harbor’s existing roadway drainage network was a major focus, as the built-out community has few open areas for larger-scale treatment. Biohabitats developed recommendations for improving runoff conveyance to minimize nuisance flooding while also integrating water quality and habitat elements. Biohabitats’ final report provided a framework for addressing drainage, water quality, and habitat improvements. The report also identified ten specific retrofit opportunities that include both private and community-owned sites. These projects range in complexity, from homeowner- or volunteer-driven efforts to larger scale projects that would be good candidates for grant or county funding. Biohabitats also developed content for and participated in two community meetings.
|Oyster Harbor Natural Drainage Assessment and Planning Project||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Oyster Harbor, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ozark Villas Natural Wastewater Treatment System|| |
Shell Knob, Missouri , United States The Ozark Villas at the Shell Knob Senior Center and residential housing complex is a collection of 32 duplex units and 32 single-family homes. Discharge of its 12,000 gallons per day system is to the nearby, environmentally sensitive Table Rock Lake. Because of very real concerns with phosphorus, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources required a phosphorus limit of 0.5 mg/liter. Reaching these low levels had never before been achieved in Missouri through the use of a small wastewater treatment system. Biohabitats was asked to design a demonstration facility that would be inexpensive to build and operate. Treatment elements consist of interceptor tanks with effluent filtering for every two units, a small diameter collection system (two inch sewer lines, no manholes), constructed wetlands with a gravel trickling filter (recycle mound), a recirculating sand filter, and an alum polymer for the phosphorus.
|Ozark Villas Natural Wastewater Treatment System||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Shell Knob, Missouri, United States||featured-project featured|
|Paint Branch Headwater Restoration|| |
Montgomery County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats was contracted to study and develop a restoration plan for a 140-acre parcel in Montgomery County, Maryland. The site consists of two headwater tributaries to the Upper Right Fork of the Paint Branch, the last stream in the County supporting a naturally-reproducing trout population. The study included a comprehensive monitoring program using over one dozen pressure and temperature data loggers to monitor the relationship of groundwater to stream flow. Stream geomorphology and stability were evaluated over three years. The study culminated in an innovative restoration approach that integrates stream and riparian wetland restoration. The design called for elevating almost one mile of stream with a complex of pools and riffles without excavating. The intent was not only to improve in-stream habitat and refuge but also to restore the historic groundwater table and almost 32 acres of forested wetlands. The design also included over 90 acres of reforestation, invasive species control and the conversion of abandoned storm water ponds into wet meadows.
|Paint Branch Headwater Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Montgomery County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Panamaes Resort Natural Wastewater Treatment & Reuse|| |
Pedasi , Panama The Panamaes Resort and Spa is a 200-room resort and spa with 75 estate lots planned for Panama’s southwestern coast. The property consists of over 700 acres with two rivers and several spectacular sand beaches. The goal was to create a “green” development and simultaneously return the overgrazed, dry pasture site to a tropical dry rain forest. The project was led the by a talented design team that included Lacroze Miguens Prati, Cresolus, Edwina Von Gal and Richard Hebert. Biohabitats was asked to provide planning and preliminary design services for wastewater collection, treatment, and reuse; stormwater management and reuse; water supply and fire protection; estuary protection; and storm surge protection for the beach front. The Biohabitats’ design approach to wastewater required a decentralized collection system that was paired with superior on-site treatment systems. The treatment technology relies on the applied ecologies of the pond (septic), marsh (constructed wetland), river (recirculating sand filter), and woodland (irrigation). The system must remove wastewater contaminants to protect fragile rivers and beaches on the site. The natural-based treatment system selected for the site is low-energy and simple to operate, and uses many materials that are locally available (versus wholly imported as a package system). After final treatment has been completed, wastewater becomes an important resource for irrigation. The stormwater design relies on a combination of on-lot techniques and development-level approaches. Biohabitats developed a set of site guidelines that included a requirement that stormwater be retained on-site to minimize erosion, support existing vegetation, recharge the aquifer, and irrigate gardens. Because of the size of the site, Biohabitats selected primarily land-based green infrastructure strategies including vernal ponds, rain gardens, swales, check dams, and stormwater wetlands. The resort had challenging water demands which fluctuated seasonally. Biohabitats worked with a Panamanian well driller to create
|Panamaes Resort Natural Wastewater Treatment & Reuse||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Pedasi, Panama||featured-project featured|
|Park Drive RSC Gully Restoration Design Build|| |
Southeast Washington, District of Columbia , United States Stormwater runoff is the primary source of degradation to local waterways within the District of Columbia. When the DC Water Planning Division needed to restore a 300-foot long, 15 to 20-foot deep gully on an ecologically sensitive hillslope of Fort Dupont Park (National Park Service land) carved by heavy storm flows from an outfall located near two busy streets, they turned to Biohabitats for help. The team began by conducting a physical and biological assessment of the degraded site. With a regenerative stormwater conveyance (RSC) approach, Biohabitats then developed a design that would not only improve stormwater attenuation and treatment, but restore ecological function and stability to the degraded ephemeral outfall channel in a way that enables it to continue developing habitat and natural water treatment as it evolves. Crafted to ensure minimum disturbance to the site’s existing forest resources, the design utilized the existing gully for construction access, filled the channel to the surrounding top of bank during construction using sand and mulch supplemented with bio-char to further filter out pollutants, and created a series of cascades and pools to restore stable conveyance to the valley bottom. While attenuating and filtering polluted stormwater, the pools also provide aquatic and terrestrial habitat. After permitting the design, the design-build team of Biohabitats, ARRC, and ER&M constructed and planted the project for DC Water.
|Park Drive RSC Gully Restoration Design Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Southeast Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Passaic River Shoreline Stabilization|| |
Newark, New Jersey , United States Biohabitats is helping the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission (PVSC) restore the Passaic River and its watershed and bring to life an envisioned Passaic River Blueway, a 76-mile canoe and kayak trail spanning Newark Bay. Working alongside the PVSC and local communities, Biohabitats designed six of the trail’s 30 planned access points in such a way that they provide access to the River while also stabilizing the shoreline, restoring local ecology, and improving stormwater management. Biohabitats began by performing assessments which included the collection and analysis of information related to each site’s soils, hydrology, and ecology. This informed design not only provides access, ecological enhancement, shoreline stabilization, and improved stormwater management, but does so in a way that minimizes disturbance and maximizes the experience for paddlers. The Passaic River Blueway and the access points designed by Biohabitats provide new opportunities for people to enjoy and learn about an underutilized, underappreciated natural resource. Biohabitats is also contributing to ongoing outreach efforts and is assisting PVSC with construction oversight under a design-build scenario.
|Passaic River Shoreline Stabilization||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Newark, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Peace and Plenty Beach Resort Natural Wastewater Treatment|| |
Great Exuma , Bahamas Peace and Plenty Beach Resort, located on Great Exuma, Bahamas, is a small, 16-room beach resort with 10 employees that has a 36-seat restaurant with bar and a laundry. The original septic tank treatment system relied on an injection well for disposal of wastewater. To replace this system while also better protecting beachside water quality, Biohabitats provided engineering design support to John Todd Ecological Design for a natural wastewater treatment system. The new, upgraded system consists of a primary treatment tank, a subsurface flow constructed wetland planted with native vegetation, a recirculating sand filter, and subsurface land application to slowly disperse and reuse effluent on a portion of the site’s landscaping. At 100% occupancy, the estimated wastewater flow is approximately 3,000 gallons per day. The system treats this flow while it protects groundwater and marine water quality by discharging only high quality effluent with low levels of nitrogen and phosphorus through the land application system–a vast improvement over many typical beachside resort wastewater management strategies. It also provides an aesthetic amenity to the resort.
|Peace and Plenty Beach Resort Natural Wastewater Treatment||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||, Great Exuma, Bahamas||featured-project featured|
|Penn Urban Ecology Roundtable||In February 2015 Keith Bowers was invited to participate in an urban ecology roundtable, hosted by Richard Weller, the Meyerson Chair of Urbanism and Landscape Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania. The event brought together a select group of professionals and academics committed to the ecological improvement of urban environments. The purpose of the roundtable was two-fold: to share current research and professional activities and to discuss, in an open and relatively informal manner, the advancement of research related to urban ecology. The event built upon the successful 2014 launch of an Urban Ecology seminar at the University of Pennsylvania and an affiliated design studio, both of which seek to apply urban ecological knowledge in innovative, productive, and practical ways. Each participant in the Penn Urban Ecology Roundtable delivered presentations on their current urban ecology initiatives in the context of addressing the following questions: 1. What are the pressing topics in regard to urban ecology in North America? 2. What are the major gaps and most exciting research opportunities in the current theory and practice of urban ecology? 3. What is the current relationship between theory (the academy) and practice (professions/organizations responsible for the built environment) in regards to urban ecology and how can it be improved? 4. How can we work together, and what can Penn do to help build better research alliances to more actively progress emerging theories and practices of urban ecology? Forging relationships, learning more about ongoing work in urban ecology issues, and exploring collaborative initiatives with like-minded firms and institutions greatly reinforced urban ecology as one of Bioworks core research areas.||Penn Urban Ecology Roundtable||Bioworks,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Pete V. Domenici U.S. Courthouse–Arid Region Urban Landscape & Water Harvesting Retrofit|| |
Albuquerque, New Mexico , United States To enhance overall sustainability of the seven-story Pete V. Domenici Federal Courthouse, located in Albuquerque’s central business district, the General Services Administration initiated a substantial renovation to the building’s three-acre landscape. As a result of this transformation, the Courthouse became one of the first projects to achieve certification from the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES), landscape performance-based accreditation awarded to projects that enhance local ecology. The innovative, provocative, new landscape features low-impact stormwater/green infrastructure and rainwater harvesting for irrigation reuse. Vast expanses of turf grass, impermeable paving, and high water-use plants were replaced with xeric plantings and materials appropriate for the site. The removed paving was repurposed to create new landscape and stormwater management features, including pedestrian friendly seating. As the civil engineer and rainwater harvesting designer on a team led by Rios Clemente Hale Studios, Biohabitats created a model for arid region urban landscape water conservation, harvesting and reuse. A 16,000-gallon rainwater harvesting system captures rooftop rainwater for reuse in landscape irrigation, reducing potable water use by more than 75%. An efficient drip irrigation system, fed primarily by harvested rooftop rainwater replaces a less efficient irrigation system. A flow meter along the sidewalk generates public awareness of the rainwater collection system. Before the renovation, the site had limited stormwater attenuation and filtration, so Biohabitats designed green infrastructure/low-impact stormwater techniques such as vegetated swales, rock gardens, and biofiltration beds to filter and slow runoff from parking and plaza areas. This stormwater system has performed well under the stress of a 500-year storm event.
|Pete V. Domenici U.S. Courthouse–Arid Region Urban Landscape & Water Harvesting Retrofit||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Phase 3 Sauvie Island Restoration–North Management Unit|| |
Columbia County, Oregon , United States Like much of the Lower Columbia, Sauvie Island was altered as it was settled and developed. Important hydrologic and sedimentation processes were interrupted by the influence of the Columbia River dams, installation and maintenance of a flood control levee system, and hydraulic modifications made for agriculture such as earth berms and tide gates. Biohabitats joined the island restoration project to undertake the construction of the habitat restoration design. At 26,000 acres, Sauvie Island is one of the largest river islands in the United States. Due to its location at the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia Rivers, Sauvie Island continues to provide important rearing habitat and food web exchange for out-migrating juvenile salmonids. The Sauvie Island project site is located in the North Unit of the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area. Owned and managed by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, it provides wildlife habitat as well as opportunities for hunting, fishing and recreational use. The wildlife area supports several species of salmonids including chum, Chinook, coho, steelhead and coastal cutthroat. Working in the Sauvie Island wildlife refuge is complicated by the remote project sites, the presence of sensitive threatened and endangered species, lake and wetland environments, and the diverse stakeholders that use the refuge for cattle ranching, hunting, fishing, and recreational river use. CREST oversaw the design, permitting and implementation of restoration and enhancement actions that maximized the habitat potential of the wetland for juvenile salmon and other wetland-dependent species. Biohabitats was contracted to remove 3 artificial fish passage barriers and earthen berms, remove a dilapidated culvert, and install a refurbished rail car bridge, perform marsh plain lowering excavation, marsh and slough channel excavation, disposal and grading of excavated materials, overall site erosion and sediment control, BMP construction, and site seeding and revegetation services. The project received
|Phase 3 Sauvie Island Restoration–North Management Unit||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Columbia County, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Philadelphia Parkland Forest Management Framework|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States With its emphasis on natural resources planning and green infrastructure, the City of Philadelphia is ahead of many municipalities in efforts to protect and enhance the natural resources in its system of parks. Philadelphia’s 5,600 acres of parkland forest have benefited from years of preservation, enhancement and restoration. However, in order to maintain a healthy urban forest additional efforts are needed. After a history of significant deforestation and land conversion in the region, there has been an extended period of forest re-growth, including invasion by nonnative species. In an effort to help the City’s Parks and Recreation Department (PP&R) bolster its ability to plan, acquire funding for, and effectively manage parkland forest resources in the face of emerging challenges and competing demands, Biohabitats developed a Parkland Forest Management Framework. Biohabitats team began by reviewing existing plans and data, and assessing forest needs based on site visits and detailed GIS analysis. Based on the findings, Biohabitats developed the Philadelphia Parkland Forest Restoration Framework, a plan to guide long-term, holistic management of the City’s parkland forest resources. The plan addresses resource conditions in need of ecological enhancement, restoration and management, and provides recommendations and strategies to protect, maintain and restore parkland forests for the benefit of the citizens of Philadelphia and the surrounding region. Unique strategies proposed include adaptive management through techniques such as deer exclosures, tree plantings, stream restoration, improved trail connections, parkway connectivity, invasive species management; innovative pilot projects such as the creation of a public food forest. The framework, which integrates stewardship throughout, also provides publicly accessible documentation of PP&R’s approach to and rationale for park forest management.
|Philadelphia Parkland Forest Management Framework||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Philadelphia Water Department–Stormwater Outfall BMP Retrofit Study|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States The Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) has a well-established history of retrofitting stormwater outfalls in order to deliver better water quality, habitat, and open space to communities. Until recently, the projects pursued have been primarily opportunistic, often driven by committed stakeholders and staff or to address local nuisance and maintenance issues. PWD recognized the need to develop a more proactive and science-based planning process to identify a broader inventory of opportunities for restoration at outfalls. Biohabitats working in partnership with McCormick Taylor helped PWD establish a rapid, repeatable, and effective desktop method to screen stormwater outfalls for retrofit potential before devoting resources to detailed field assessments. Biohabitats utilized existing GIS data from the City of Philadelphia to locate and evaluate stormwater BMP retrofit locations. Using the GIS data and an understanding of potential design and implementation constraints, Biohabitats developed screening factors and weighting schemes to vet potential retrofit opportunities. The approach was field-verified as an effective method to identify opportunities. The methodology was subsequently used to evaluate nearly 400 outfalls citywide.
|Philadelphia Water Department–Stormwater Outfall BMP Retrofit Study||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Pike Creek at Independence School Stream Restoration|| |
New Castle County, Delaware , United States After Biohabitats’ successful restoration of Pike Creek at the Three Little Bakers Golf Course, Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) obtained funding to restore trout habitat and reduce erosion and sedimentation on another reach of Pike Creek. The reach had experienced severe bank erosion and channel instability caused by increased storm flows from impervious surfaces in the watershed. The instability had compromised the stream’s aquatic habitat. Using natural channel design techniques, Biohabitats designed the restoration of 3,100 linear feet of Pike Creek and 600 linear feet of an unnamed tributary. The design provided the plan form, cross section and profile necessary for the creek to remain stable. It also reestablished aquatic habitat, particularly for trout, and created floodplain wetlands to provide plant diversity and reconnection to the stream. Factors complicating the restoration included roads, sewer lines, storm drain outfalls, utility poles and mature trees. The Independence School was instrumental in the project by not only allowing the restoration of the creek on their property, but also supporting the creation of four acres of wetland (forested and emergent) on fallow ground between school facilities and the creek. Biohabitats worked closely with the construction contractor to balance cut and fill between the stream restoration and the wetland creation to keep costs within DNREC’s budget.
|Pike Creek at Independence School Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||New Castle County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Pike Creek at Three Little Bakers Golf Course Stream Restoration|| |
New Castle County, Delaware , United States Pike Creek, which is part of the White Clay Creek Wild and Scenic River system, is a public drinking water source and one of the few trout put-and-take stocked streams in Delaware. Pike Creek, which provides habitat in an area of high growth and development, is part of the Delaware Estuary Program. The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) contracted Biohabitats to restore a 4,500 linear foot section of Pike Creek which flows through the Three Little Bakers Golf Course. The goal of the project was to stabilize the stream channel using natural channel design and reintroduce riparian vegetation to the floodplain. Abating stream channel erosion would reduce or eliminate excess sediment in the stream and improve water and habitat quality. The project also included the design, construction and planting of riparian wetland and upland vegetation to further protect banks, improve and maintain water quality and provide riparian habitat. Biohabitats collected background data on the stream and its watershed, performed a comprehensive morphological survey of the project reach and an identified reference reach, assessed sediment transport and in-stream aquatic habitat, and modeled watershed hydrology and stream hydraulics. After creating a series of alternative concepts, participating in stakeholder meetings, and facilitating regulatory agency participation, Biohabitats prepared final design and construction drawings, specifications and bid documents and provided construction oversight. Biohabitats worked closely with construction contractors to make field adjustments and save DNREC money. DNREC was able to restore an additional 1,000 linear feet of stream with the savings. The team also worked directly with the golf pro and maintenance supervisor to tailor the vegetation to facilitate the golf experience.
|Pike Creek at Three Little Bakers Golf Course Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||New Castle County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Pittsburgh Regional Parks Master Plan|| |
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania , United States Biohabitats served as ecological restoration expert on a team that provided a Master Plan for Pittsburgh’s Regional Parks. After collecting relevant information, maps, historic documents, and aerial photographs for each park, Biohabitats performed on-site assessments to identify hydrologic and hydraulic conditions, soils, vegetation, and landscape maintenance activities. The site assessments focused on hydrologic/hydraulic resources (site drainage, streams, ponds, and storm drain system), soils (soil erosion, soil compaction), vegetation (including tree composition and evaluation), landscape management (turf, woodland, ponds, streams, stormwater runoff), and wildlife habitat. Biohabitats then mapped these ecological components. Biohabitats also participated in client and design team meetings to review site assessments and mapping and develop strategies for the protection, restoration, and management of the Parks’ natural resources. Biohabitats helped prepare a report describing findings and recommendations. The report highlighted strategies for the protection, restoration, and management of the following resources: stormwater quality and quantity management, streams, ponds, soils, vegetation, tree replacement and landscape management. Biohabitats also prioritized protection, restoration, and management strategies for each park; identified key demonstration projects that feature specific restoration strategies; developed implementation guidelines, prepared preliminary cost estimates; and identified staffing requirements for maintenance and operation.
|Pittsburgh Regional Parks Master Plan||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Pittsburgh Regional Parks Natural Areas Study|| |
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania , United States Frick Park, Schenley Park, Highland Park and Riverview Park make up Pittsburgh’s magnificent four large regional parks. Together, they represent approximately 1,700 acres of public open space and natural lands within Pittsburgh’s metropolitan area. While the parks provide important recreational facilities for the citizens of Pittsburgh, they also contain valuable urban natural habitats, including forests, stream valleys, wetlands and meadows. These habitats provide vital refuges for threatened and dwindling native plant communities, water resources and wildlife populations. In 2000, the City released Pittsburgh’s Regional Parks Master Plan, which focuses on the parks’ development and management over the next 20 years. As a member of the master planning team, Biohabitats was instrumental in developing principles and recommendations for the restoration and protection of the parks’ natural resources. One of the plan’s many recommendations was the preparation of a Natural Areas Study that encompasses all four of the regional parks. Proposing an integrated approach of inventory, assessment and adaptive management, Biohabitats was chosen by the City to prepare the Natural Areas Study. Key natural resource categories assessed include geology, soils, hydrology, vegetation, and fauna. The project involved systematic data collection tailored to meet urban conditions. Ultimately, the collected field data and analysis supported the preparation of a Natural Areas Management Plan, detailing conservation, restoration and adaptive management actions for the four regional parks.
|Pittsburgh Regional Parks Natural Areas Study||Ohio River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Playa Venao Wastewater Treatment & Reuse|| |
Azuero Coast , Panama The resort community of Playa Venao, which includes 205 units of houses and condos, three hotels, four restaurants, and eight retail shops, is located on one of Panama’s finest surfing beaches. In addition to the resort’s beautiful beaches, a river winds through the property. Envisioned as a unique, eco-friendly destination, Playa Venao was planned with the green design philosophy: “use nature, don’t fight it.” A frequent challenge when working with resort communities is protecting the off-shore ecology and the water quality of rivers and streams in the resort property. The solution Biohabitats typically uses is to avoid any discharge of wastewater into the ocean, streams, or rivers. In this particular project, we collect wastewater from the resort buildings and pump it to a wastewater treatment site where the water is treated to U.S. Advanced Wastewater Treatment Standards. After disinfection with an UV disinfection system, the reclaimed water is used for irrigation and as a supply for water closets and urinals. This reuse minimizes the total potable water demand. The wastewater treatment system consists of trickling filters, subsurface-flow constructed wetlands, and recirculating sand filters. This treatment is followed by mechanical filtration and UV disinfection. This level of treatment exceeds local standards, but the most significant factor in protecting the beaches and river is the reuse of reclaimed water and the remaining nutrients to enhance the landscape.
|Playa Venao Wastewater Treatment & Reuse||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||, Azuero Coast, Panama||featured-project featured|
|Pocket Park Native Plant Landscape Plan|| |
South Euclid, Ohio , United States Biohabitats and the City of South Euclid developed a concept for two adjacent, city-owned, vacant parcels. The objective was to create a quiet, low-maintenance, contemplative pocket park complete with a meandering trail and a series of offset “sitting rooms.” Biohabitats based the trail layout on the site’s existing vegetation, predominately mature white oak. This vegetation, along with landscaping berms and new vegetation, creates a series of “sitting rooms” removed from the trail and road. Each landscape berm is planted with a palette of native plants suited for either birds, butterflies and hummingbirds, honey bees, and edibles for humans. These berms/beds are strategically placed to take advantage of canopy openings to provide additional sunlight to plants, thus expanding the available plant palette. Remaining portions of the site will be planted with a combination of woodland understory trees and shrubs to further attract wildlife and enhance the quality of the “sitting rooms.”
|Pocket Park Native Plant Landscape Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||South Euclid, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ponds at Potomac Yard Park Ecological Stormwater Retrofits|| |
Alexandria, Virginia , United States The Ponds at Potomac Yard are two existing stormwater management ponds that receive runoff from nearby development. These ponds ultimately discharge to the Potomac River, a tributary of the Chesapeake Bay. Biohabitats’ ecologically engineered approach, designed in conjunction with Ambler Design, LLC, retrofitted the ponds to improve water quality and increase circulation and dissolved oxygen with an aesthetically pleasing solution. Both ponds are highly visible from adjacent shopping areas. The North Pond, the larger of the two ponds at approximately 3.5 million gallons, is located behind a Target™ shopping building. The South Pond, with a volume of one million gallons, is beneath a highway overpass. The ponds were originally designed as ‘wet’ ponds for the management of stormwater prior to discharge to the Potomac River but the inherent water quality and aesthetics were poor. Through the use of regenerative and natural systems design principles, the quality of both the internal water and that being discharged to the river has been improved. The North Pond is outfitted with an ‘active edge wetland filter bed’ that purifies water, while the South Pond is outfitted with a ‘floating aquatic wetlands’ system. In addition, energy-efficient supplemental aeration increases circulation and dissolved oxygen in both ponds. This improvement of the ponds’ ecological function helps reduce pollutants and creates more attractive pond edges and clearer water columns. The retrofits address the stratification, low oxygen levels, and lack of circulation in the stormwater ponds. The active edge wetland filter and floating aquatic wetlands systems provide habitat and surface area for a wide range of naturally occurring, attached growth microorganisms and invertebrates. Passing water through or across these surfaces can reduce nitrogen, phosphorus, biological oxygen demand (BOD), suspended solids (TSS) and fecal coliforms. Bottom aeration “turns the pond over” allowing additional oxygen to be absorbed
|Ponds at Potomac Yard Park Ecological Stormwater Retrofits||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Alexandria, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Pope Branch Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Design-Build|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States For this design-build project for the District Department of the Environment, Biohabitats created regenerative storm water conveyance systems at three highly unstable, hillside areas. The goal of the project was to provide stable conveyance and water quality treatment along two ditches on the steep slopes of the Pope Branch Park stream valley and at another location in a nearby neighborhood park. This project included the restoration of three very steep large gullies originating from road runoff. Two of these projects were restored using the regenerative stormwater conveyance approach, which delivers an estimated 90% TSS, 60% TP, and 50% TN reception for the drainage area served. These projects involved grading the gullies and either filling them with a sand and mulch mix and creating a stable, non-erosive flow path over top of the sand fill using a repeating series of boulder and cobble grade controls and pools. This reduces the energy of the stormwater and provides a non-erosive conveyance path for stormwater runoff. One of the three projects, involved creation of an urban park LID structure that creates a water feature in the park for the high frequency, low volume runoff events and ties back into an existing stormdrain for the infrequent large flows. This involved using a curb cut and modified inlet structure to capture water from street runoff, directing this flow to a created novel stream channel with riffles and pools underlain by a carbon-rich sand bed. Small high frequency storms enter the stream, soak into the sand bedded channel, and either infiltrate or are delivered via a underdrain or surface inlet to a underground nalgene-like storage container which decants into the stormdrain system. Larger flows are directed to the stormdrain system via the novel stream and a surface inlet at the end of the stream. Biohabitats
|Pope Branch Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design, Design-Build,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Pope Branch Stream Restoration|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States Pope Branch Stream Restoration is a design project on the Pope Branch tributary to the Anacostia River for DCWATER and the District Department of the Environment. The stream restoration is being done in conjunction with a sewer line replacement along the stream valley. The project objectives are to stabilize nearly 5,000 linear feet of stream channel within Pope Branch Park, thus reducing the sediment load carried to the Anacostia River; enhance in-stream habitat for resident fish and benthic communities; and enhance the riparian and floodplain habitat. All these objectives work towards improving the overall ecological value of the Pope Branch stream and floodplain area. The project will provide the City with a unique, aesthetically pleasing community space that would serve as a showcase for ecological restoration being done in the City.
|Pope Branch Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Poudre River Downtown Master Plan & Design Project|| |
Fort Collins, Colorado , United States Biohabitats is an integral component of a multi-disciplinary team, retained by the City of Fort Collins, to develop a master plan and design drawings for over a mile of the Poudre River corridor through downtown Fort Collins. The Poudre River holds an iconic status for the Fort Collins community. It was the original agricultural, business and commercial hub of the City and has evolved into a popular recreation and conservation corridor. The City manages the river corridor for its natural values and habitat, and for recreation,such as biking, walking, picnicking, tubing, swimming, and fishing. This reach of the river receives a substantial amount of public use and the City wants to manage its use in a way that increases the user experience while at the same time protects its high value natural resources. There are several constraints in this reach that hinder recreational use and degrade the natural value of the area. These constraints include two water diversion dams; areas of steep, riprap channel banks; and major road and rail crossings. Biohabitats is assisting the design team with natural resources assessment (vegetative communities and wildlife habitat, ecological connectivity, floodplain and riparian buffer, and wetland/groundwater recharge areas) and geomorphic characterization of the river and adjacent lands. Biohabitats has established suitability criteria and developed the ecological framework for buffer widths and habitat zones that have been incorporated in the river master plan. With a community approved master plan, Biohabitats is assisting the team in developing design details that will enhance aquatic habitat, provide recreational access, maximize ecological functions of the floodplain, provide fish passage, and natural river bank stability. We are also assisting the team to develop construction cost estimates and detailed construction specifications.
|Poudre River Downtown Master Plan & Design Project||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Ecological Restoration,||Fort Collins, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge Spartina Alterniflora Planting|| |
Sussex County, Delaware , United States The 10,144-acre Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge, located on the western shore of the Delaware Bay, is an important stopover site for migratory birds as they travel up and down the Atlantic Flyway and provides protected breeding habitat for federally and State-listed threatened and endangered species, as well as many neo-tropical migrating bird species. Hundreds of native plant and animal species thrive in its mosaic of salt marsh, freshwater marsh, ponds and impoundments, wooded swamps and upland grasslands and forest. The Refuge was severely impacted by Superstorm Sandy in 2012. Coastal dunes were significantly eroded and large dune breaches and severe flooding converted the refuge’s freshwater marsh system into an altered open tidal saltwater habitat. With emergency funding provided by the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013, USFWS initiated the restoration of a healthy and resilient salt marsh that would be able to handle more intense and frequent coastal storms. Using a National Park Service Revegetation Services contract, the USFWS hired Biohabitats to implement one phase of the restoration. Partnering with the firm’s sister company, Ecological Restoration and Management, Biohabitats will work to re-establish Spartina alterniflora in a low marsh zone. To accomplish this, the team will plant a 13.5-acre section of the breached impoundment with more than a quarter of a million plugs. The road adjacent to the planting area provides the only access to and from the refuge, as well as the beach community of Prime Hook. So to avoid obstructing traffic along this narrow road, the team is establishing a temporary nursery on site. The nursery will be placed within the upper intertidal zone, which, during normal tidal conditions, will expose the plants to inundation twice daily. This will keep them protected and properly watered, and allow them to better acclimate to actual site conditions.
|Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge Spartina Alterniflora Planting||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Sussex County, Delaware, United States||featured-project featured|
|Proctors Creek Stream Restoration|| |
Chester, Virginia , United States Proctors Creek was relocated in the mid 1980s as a result of roadway interchange improvements. The relocation placed Proctors Creek in between a primary state highway and an overhead utility right of way, in an area with highly acidic soils. The soils prohibited vegetative recruitment in the newly disturbed area, which led to erosion and widening of the stream channel. The site was also influenced by beavers, which had entered the area and created impoundments in the Proctors Creek watershed. Biohabitats was selected to help the Virginia Department of Transportation preserve highway assets, return normal hydrologic function to the stream, control erosion, reestablish riparian vegetation and mitigate the acidification of riparian soils. The restoration design, which took into account the beaver population, created a new channel that would remove the influence of the acidic soils, thereby promoting vegetative reestablishment and reducing erosion. The new channel focused on numerous ecological influences within Proctors Creek corridor, helping to ensure a more successful restoration.
|Proctors Creek Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Chester, Virginia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Punta Cacique Resort Water Infrastructure|| |
Guancaste , Costa Rica Punta Cacique is an upscale resort destination, located in Guanacaste Province of Costa Rica. The 650-acre property includes coastal beaches and spectacular vistas. The developer, Revolution Places, is planning a resort community that will integrate both luxury lifestyle traveling and the ecological experience. As a member of the design team, which included U.S. and Central American firms, Biohabitats examined several key components of the master plan which addressed big-picture issues of water, wastewater, and stormwater in a tropical climate, with an emphasis on strategies for resort and community development. Biohabitats prepared a water balance and the cost analysis of wastewater infrastructure, which contributed to the master planning process. The water balance report and calculations provided a design framework that would drive decisions in later phases of the project. The sensitive ecosystem surrounding the development was one of the greatest challenges of the site. The design team worked to insure that the environmental impact of the development was considered in every phase of design.
|Punta Cacique Resort Water Infrastructure||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||, Guancaste, Costa Rica||featured-project featured|
|Racoon Creek Stream & Wetland Mitigation Bank|| |
Mitchell County, Georgia , United States About twenty years ago, a beautiful, meandering creek in southern Georgia suffered the ravages of being stripped of its dense swamp hardwood habitat and converted to a bare, straightened channel so that cotton could be grown on the surrounding land. Biohabitats was retained by the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) to design the restoration of Raccoon Creek and its surrounding wetlands. The 770-acre site included approximately 3.5 miles of channelized, straightened stream and 120 acres of degraded wetlands. The primary approach for the site design was three-fold: 1) restore the natural geomorphology of the stream channels; 2) restore the wetland hydrology to the zones of drained hydric soil; and 3) reestablish native wetland and riparian vegetation on the site. A nearby “reference site” featuring an undisturbed stream channel and wetlands provided a model for the restoration design. Biohabitats also developed a Stream and Wetland Mitigation Banking Instrument (MBI) for approval by the federal regulatory agencies. By developing three alternative conceptual designs along with cost estimates and calculations of possible credits generated for each alternative, Biohabitats was able to provide GDOT with the most cost-effective design alternative that would generate the most mitigation credits. At the same time, the restoration project set the stage for the return of a very valuable ecosystem.
|Racoon Creek Stream & Wetland Mitigation Bank||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Mitchell County, Georgia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Raincatcher Stormwater Control|| |
Durham, North Carolina , United States Falls Lake was built in 1981 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to provide flood control, drinking water supply, fish and wildlife habitat, and recreation to citizens in the region. Over the next 27 years development and stormwater runoff in the watershed began to impact water quality in the lake, and by 2008, it was listed as impaired. A large area within the northern city limits of Durham, NC is in the Falls Lake watershed and drains to Falls Lake. The Falls Lake Nutrient Management Strategy was implemented in 2011, and requires sizable reductions in nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations in surface water flowing to the Lake. In 2012 the City of Durham Stormwater Services Department implemented the Raincatchers project, in a strategically located neighborhood in the watershed. The project involved planting trees, disconnecting gutter downspouts, installing cisterns, and constructing 42 bioretention stormwater control measures (SCM) in residential lots in an effort to reduce nutrient concentrations in storm water runoff. Biohabitats designed three sizes of bioretention SCMs, assisted in contract bid award, and performed construction oversight on all of the SCMs installed. Biohabitats also produced the planting schedule for trees and supervised tree installation. The City of Durham will monitor water quality into the future to quantify results and water quality benefits derived from the Raincatcher project.
|Raincatcher Stormwater Control||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Durham, North Carolina, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rancho de Bosque Natural Wastewater Treatment System|| |
Lamy, New Mexico , United States In creating Rancho de Bosque, a 23-lot community located southeast of Santa Fe, NM, developers wanted to ensure that every homeowner could have an attractive, native landscape despite the development’s very limited water supply. In addition to establishing covenants requiring the use of native plants and prohibiting hose bibs on house exteriors, the developer also sought a sustainable way to treat and reuse the community’s wastewater. To help achieve this goal, Biohabitats designed an on-site wastewater treatment and reuse system that supplies treated effluent for use as irrigation water. A small diameter collection system conveys wastewater from each home in the community to a treatment system consisting of three cells of constructed wetlands, an intermittent sand filter, and a covered storage pond. During the irrigation season, treated effluent is pumped back to each home’s irrigation system through a distribution system that employs the same trench as the collection system. Each home is supplied enough water to irrigate approximately 4,000 square-feet of native landscape. Rancho de Bosque was the first subdivision in New Mexico permitted for reuse of treated effluent.
|Rancho de Bosque Natural Wastewater Treatment System||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Lamy, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Red Butte Creek Riparian Restoration Projects|| |
Salt Lake City, Utah , United States Red Butte Creek flows through two of Salt Lake City’s parks, the Miller Park Bird Refuge and Nature Preserve and Liberty Park. Both vital green spaces have been popular for the City’s people as well as critical wildlife oases for an otherwise urbanized environment. The creek, which was already stressed by a history of surrounding development, suffered severe impacts after a 2010 oil pipeline spill. In Miller Park, Biohabitats helped the parks department regenerate ecosystem health and function to a severely degraded reach of Red Butte Creek. The project included invasive species control, native plant establishment, streambed restoration, bank stabilization, and trail and signage improvements. The design not only slows down, detains, and treats stormwater; it also hydrates the floodplain, allowing riparian vegetation to flourish. Riffle/pool sequences provide aquatic habitat. In Liberty Park, Biohabitats helped the City restore vitality to Liberty Lake, which is fed by Red Butte Creek, by establishing native, emergent wetland edge with willow shrubland, creating floating wetlands, and improving vegetation on an existing island. For both projects, Biohabitats worked with Design Workshop to prepare concepts and assist public meetings. We created final construction drawings and complete bid documents. We also provided construction oversight services. Construction was completed in fall 2014. Miller Park has since weathered several large storms, including one exceeding the 100-year discharge. In Liberty Lake, the new wetland system adds habitat, helps clean water, and includes interpretive signage created in collaboration with the nearby Tracy Aviary.
|Red Butte Creek Riparian Restoration Projects||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Salt Lake City, Utah, United States||featured-project featured|
|Red Jacket Natural Habitat Park Shoreline Restoration|| |
Erie County, New York , United States Restoring the shoreline of Red Jacket Park is one of the final steps in a larger effort to improve habitat quality along a stretch of the Buffalo River that was designated a Great Lakes Area of Concern. The effort began with dredging to remove contaminated sediment from the river bottom. Once that effort was complete, the County Department of Environment and Planning hired Biohabitats, working as a subconsultant to Wendel, to restore Red Jacket Natural Habitat Park’s 800 linear feet of shoreline. The overall goal of the project is to improve fish and wildlife habitat by creating a mosaic of escape and forage habitat and by restoring valuable shallow-water areas and their rich vegetation community. Biohabitats is leading the restoration design efforts and was responsible for completing an ecological assessment of the park, including an invasive species inventory. Biohabitats will also be responsible for planning the management and monitoring of the restoration. A new series of bendway weirs along the shoreline will encourage the deposition of sediment and help restore the critical shallow-water habitat that was lost during the dredging. Submerged aquatic vegetation and emergent vegetation will then be planted to provide additional habitat. Large woody debris will be added in the shallows and existing constructed wetland to provide additional habitat for wildlife. In the riparian areas, invasive species will be treated and a “living” fence will be planted along the property lines to limit encroachment from adjacent invasives, while providing habitat and a native seed source.
|Red Jacket Natural Habitat Park Shoreline Restoration||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Erie County, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Workshops|| |
Annapolis, Maryland , United States Biohabitats, working with Underwood & Associates and the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works, developed and delivered a set of five training workshops on the theory and design of open channel coastal plains outfalls using elements of stream restoration, bioretention, and wetland restoration. Over 400 participants, including development engineers and local, state, and federal regulators, attended the workshops. This innovative approach to today’s stormwater management challenges, which combines stream channel restoration with improved sediment and nutrient processing, is called Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance (RSC). With conventional stormwater conveyance, runoff from impervious surfaces travels through systems such as pipes and concrete channels, magnifying and transferring energies to the discharge or outfall. This energy causes erosion, failure of structures and stream channel degradation, which can ultimately lead to lowered shallow groundwater levels, destabilized soils, reduced native vegetation and degraded water quality. Alternatively, RSC incorporates natural stream channel design techniques and materials, minimizing soil destabilization, vegetation disturbance and invasive plant establishment. RSC optimizes the conversion of stormwater to groundwater, reduces erosive energies and increases natural capital. A truly regenerative approach, RSC results in a system of physical features, chemical processes and biological mechanisms that dramatically enhance the ecological and aesthetic value of a drainage area. RSC is generally less expensive to construct and easier to secure permitting for than conventional stormwater conveyance projects. RSC is a win-win-win approach in terms of ecology, economics and aesthetics.
|Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Workshops||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Annapolis, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Restoration of Lower Lower Stony Run|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States Stony Run is a small, but ecologically and historically important stream that flows through three miles of northern Baltimore before joining the Jones Falls and ultimately Baltimore Harbor. In the early 1900s, the stream valley was home to the Maryland and Pennsylvania (‘Ma and Pa’) Railroad’s passenger and freight line. Today, it has become a lush, green corridor that connects many neighborhoods. Though some portions of the stream are buried, much of it flows visibly through City Parks, neighborhoods, and school campuses, where it has become a treasured natural, recreational, and educational resource. Over the last century, however, Stony Run had suffered severe erosion due to stormwater and various infrastructure projects. The City has already restored the upper and middle branches of Stony Run following waste water utility improvements. Biohabitats worked with the Baltimore City Department of Public Works to address the downstream portion, which runs through Wyman Park and the campus of Johns Hopkins University. With the goals of restoring stability, ecological function, and water quality (nutrient reduction credits), Biohabitats developed a design to restore the lower 5,000 feet of Stony Run. The design incorporated stream bank stability, riparian wetlands, utility protection, aquatic and terrestrial habitat improvement, and invasive species control. Biohabitats also developed an innovative terraced stormwater wetland by retrofitting existing and undersized storm drains. Rather than increase the size of the pipe to convey large stormflows, our design reduces the capacity of the pipe, causing the flow to bubble up more than ten feet into the terraced wetlands. This system will provide 100% of the water quality volume from more than 20 acres of existing impervious area.
|Restoration of Lower Lower Stony Run||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Restoration of the Arroyo de los Chamisos|| |
Santa Fe, New Mexico , United States The Arroyo de los Chamisos emerges from the Sangre de Cristo Mountains above Santa Fe as a small ephemeral creek. As it flows through town, it collects urban drainage from the urban area, grows in size, and becomes more flashy and prone to channel and bank erosion. Further complicating matters is the fact that soils in the watershed are sandy and quite erodible. Over time, the arroyo channel has widened and eroded its banks. Buried utility lines have become exposed and paved pedestrian trails have been undercut. Nearby homes and city parks trails are threatened. Seeking a cost-effective approach to stabilize the arroyo channel that would emphasize use of natural materials like timbers and rock over concrete and steel structures, the City of Santa Fe turned to Biohabitats. Biohabitats performed a field geomorphic assessment and reviewed innovative restoration techniques in use on similar streams in the region. Working with the City and the prime engineering consultant, we selected timber post vanes and boulder toe walls as cost effective methods of stabilizing the channel at the outside of meander bends. We designed boulder drop structures as grade controls.
|Restoration of the Arroyo de los Chamisos||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Restoration Services for the City of Fort Collins|| |
Fort Collins, Colorado , United States From 2010 to 2013, Biohabitats assisted the City of Fort Collins Water Utilities by conducting wetland assessments and annual monitoring reporting required by the wetland permits for the Timberline Road Widening Mitigation and Manhattan Detention Basin Mitigation sites. This work included coordinating with the City survey crew to map wetland limits, assessing wetland vegetation, and documenting progress toward permit goals. At the Timberline site, our monitoring revealed that the previous design (created and installed by others) did not have adequate wetland vegetation. As a result, the City Utilities Department had Biohabitats develop a revegetation plan and install the plantings to supplement the existing planting and restore a resilient mosaic of native plants for the range of on-site hydrologic conditions. Biohabitats has also conducted a wetland mitigation project for the City of Fort Collins’ Director of Capital Improvements including mitigation planning, design development, construction, and monitoring of the I25/392 Interchange Wetland. The first step in constructing this wetland was a planning process to evaluate alternatives. Biohabitats reviewed background information including National Wetlands Inventory and soils data for three potential mitigation areas selected by the City and conducted fi eld visits. A site near the interchange was chosen for building the wetland, and Biohabitats began construction in March 2013, after obtaining erosion control material, marking off vegetation salvage areas in the field, and coordinating logistics with City staff and an adjacent property owner.
|Restoration Services for the City of Fort Collins||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Fort Collins, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ringling College Master Plan|| |
Sarasota, Florida , United States Biohabitats is working with Ayers/Saint/Gross to provide a comprehensive master plan for Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida. Through a combination of field and data analysis examining the campus’s ecological character, stormwater drainage, and landscape management issues Biohabitats is developing green infrastructure planning and design guidelines. An emphasis is on “green infrastructure” practices that provide groundwater recharge, volume reduction, and restoration and reconnection of natural landscapes that provide vegetative filtering and uptake of pollutants. The recommended green infrastructure strategies consider fiscal efficiency of treatment measures that optimize treatment capability, ecological function and landscape position. The overall planning approach for this project focuses on restoring native vegetation, retrofitting for BMPs, and sustainable landscape and stormwater management for future development. Responding to the context of this unique place the green infrastructure guidelines recommend a variety of sustainable stormwater and landscape management design concepts and practices to be woven into the comprehensive master plan.
|Ringling College Master Plan||Conservation Planning, Regenerative Design,||Sarasota, Florida, United States||featured-project featured|
|River Island North Restoration|| |
Barton, Oregon , United States Located on the Clackamas River, this project was the second stage of a large-scale restoration of River Island, a 240-acre natural area that includes wetlands, oak savanna, and upland and riparian forests. Decades of gravel mining and a major flood in 1996 changed the course of the river in this area and damaged habitat for multiple species, including endangered salmon. A major component of the project was reconnecting Goose Creek to the Clackamas River. A 1996 flood caused the river to change course and bypass its confluence with Goose Creek. Salmon that once spawned there could no longer enter the creek as sediment filled the area. Just beyond the floodplain was a large wetland that included several ponds left from the mining operation. The wetland provided habitat for turtles, salamanders, and frogs. Biohabitats began by leading the dewatering and fish rescue effort, primarily leveraging gravity flow to remove water and fish from the site. Then, to enhance and create habitat for endangered Chinook (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) and coho (Oncorhynchus kisutch)salmon, winter-run steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss), and western painted turtles (Chrysemys picta bellii), the construction team, including K&E Excavating, installed 1600 logs and moved 160,000 cubic yards of cobble and soil around the site. Vibratory pile drivers were used to pierce hundreds of 40-foot logs into the ground surface, and each pile was individually tested for its embedment strength. Then, logs with and without rootwads were interwoven into the driven piles and each assembly was fortified with steel hardware connections. Finally, the structures were backfilled with cobble. The restoration rebuilds the floodplain and enhances and creates backwater habitat that young salmon rely on for refuge from fast-moving waters. The logjams increase the complexity and roughness of the floodplain, allowing it to slow floodwaters and capture nutrients and sediments. The log
|River Island North Restoration||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Barton, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|RiverBend Commerce Park Site Development Plan|| |
Buffalo, New York , United States As a key member of a planning/design team led by Sasaki Associates, Biohabitats oversaw the ecological restoration and green infrastructure components of the site development plan for this a 260-acre vacant brownfield site on the banks of the Buffalo River. Though the Buffalo River suffered neglect and abandonment throughout Buffalo’s industrial growth, it is now poised for a dramatic comeback. The RiverBend development will play a critical role in this revitalization process. Regeneration of the site and river’s ecological health will not only bring environmental benefits, it will also provide RiverBend with an array of recreation, cultural heritage and economic opportunities. RiverBend is intended to be a model for sustainable development that fosters long-term economic growth by leveraging the assets of the site and region. Place-making principals were applied to create special public spaces and a new community on the banks of the Buffalo River. The project aims to achieve the vision of the South Buffalo Brownfield Opportunity Area Master Plan in a manner that minimizes environmental impacts while fostering on-going remediation and environmental restoration of the Buffalo River. Biohabitats worked closely with Sasaki and other team members to ensure integration of ecological restoration and green infrastructure into the overall plan for the site. Biohabitats is also working with Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper as they pursue restoration of 2,800 linear feet of the Buffalo River riparian zone at the RiverBend site.
|RiverBend Commerce Park Site Development Plan||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Buffalo, New York, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rivers Casino Ecological Restoration|| |
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania , United States In 2007, the 4,000-square-foot Rivers Casino was constructed along Pittsburgh’s North Shore of the Ohio River. A trail running between the casino and the Ohio River is an extension of the Allegheny Heritage Trail, a prominent feature of the North Shore Riverfront Park. This park is one of many sections of the Three Rivers Park, a former brownfield site that was transformed into a 10-mile network of public and private green space along the Monongahela, Allegheny and Ohio Rivers. In an effort to restore and protect the river bank while abiding by guidelines established for the Three Rivers Park area, Biohabitats provided a bank stabilization and riparian buffer restoration plan for approximately 900 feet of riverfront associated with the casino’s construction. The plan included stabilization control measures, riparian planting plans, soil amendments, meadow restoration plans, and maintenance specifications. The native, riparian planting scheme not only fits into the local setting and provides improved habitat and trailside aesthetics, but it also can withstand the flow of water and ice along the Ohio River.
|Rivers Casino Ecological Restoration||Ohio River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rock Creek III, IV & V, and Ignacio Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
La Plata County, Colorado , United States The effects of overgrazing near southwestern Colorado’s Rock Creek resulted in major erosion, with banks up to eight feet high in some places. Biohabitats has worked with the Southern Ute Indian Tribe to address this problem through a series of four projects along the creek. The Rock Creek III project combined the stabilization of 4,000 feet of stream with the creation of riparian habitat for wildlife. The design approach involved laying back vertical banks, creating bankfull benches, installing toe protection and lowering the elevation of point bars to accommodate high flows. The Rock Creek IV project reach included large cobble substrate material as opposed to sand. For this project, the approach involved using sod mats from the inside meander to create a bankfull bench on the outside meander. The toe of the outside bank was stabilized with coarse substrate material. Riffle enhancements, pools, and root wads were used to improve aquatic habitat. Revegetation, which was installed by tribal workers and local volunteers, included container-grown cottonwoods, willows, and other riparian shrubs; willow stakes; cottonwood poles; and bare-root riparian shrubs. Conditions along the Rock Creek V project reach were similar to those of the other projects. Geomorphic assessments of this 4,000 linear foot reach were used to design the restoration of 13 specific sites along the reach. As with the other project reaches, Biohabitats prepared wetland permits, collected baseline vegetation conditions, and developed a planting plan to restore the riparian buffer. Biohabitats also provided construction oversight. Biohabitats also worked with the Tribe’s Water Quality Department on the restoration of nearby Ignacio Creek. Ignacio Creek, approximately 5,000 linear feet of stream was restored on this project which involved site investigations, stream restoration design, selection of appropriate native species (including willow cutting and preparation), collection of soil samples, and oversight of construction and planting activities
|Rock Creek III, IV & V, and Ignacio Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||La Plata County, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rock Creek–Bingham Run Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Design-Build|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States Rock Creek Park, a favorite spot among Washington, DC bikers, hikers, birders, runners and skaters, is a natural oasis amidst a highly urbanized landscape. Administered by the U.S. National Park Service, this popular park contains many degraded streams. Biohabitats is currently helping the District Department of the Environment (DDOE) restore one of them, Bingham Run, an ephemeral tributary to Rock Creek. A regenerative stormwater conveyance (RSC) approach is being applied to this design-build restoration of 800 linear feet of incised stream channel. This involves raising the channel bed and reconnecting the stream with its floodplain and riparian wetlands to optimize the conversion of stormwater to groundwater and reduce its erosive energies. The aim of this project is to demonstrate this technology as an alternative to traditional approaches to stream and outfall erosion, such as piping, rip rap and hard structures. The RSC approach will improve water quality by stopping head-ward migration of the channel incision. It will also improve local hydrology by tempering the influence of stormwater runoff on the stream, converting “peaky” surface discharge into shallow seepage, reducing existing forested stream bank erosion and tree loss, and improving the quality and quantity of water delivered to downstream reaches.
|Rock Creek–Bingham Run Regenerative Stormwater Conveyance Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rock Creek–Milkhouse Regenerative Stream Conveyance Design-Build|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States Rock Creek Park, a favorite spot among Washington, DC bikers, hikers, birders, runners and skaters, is a natural oasis amidst a highly urbanized landscape. Administered by the U.S. National Park Service, this popular park contains many degraded streams. Biohabitats is helping the District Department of the Environment restore one of them, a perennial tributary to Rock Creek. This design/build effort applies a regenerative stormwater conveyance (RSC) approach to 1,000 linear feet of incised stream channel. By raising the channel bed and reconnecting the stream with its floodplain and riparian wetlands, the conversion of stormwater to groundwater is optimized, and erosive energies are reduced. The project demonstrates this technology as an alternative to traditional approaches to stream and outfall erosion, such as piping, rip rap and hard structures. The RSC approach will improve water quality as a result of the cessation of head-ward migration of the channel incision. It will also improve local hydrology by tempering the influence of stormwater runoff on the stream, converting “peaky” surface discharge into shallow seepage, reducing bank erosion and tree loss, and improving the quality and quantity of water delivered to downstream reaches. This project is funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
|Rock Creek–Milkhouse Regenerative Stream Conveyance Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rockcrest Stream Restoration|| |
Rockville, Maryland , United States Rockcrest tributary flows into Rock Creek, a tributary to the Potomac River within the City of Rockville. With drainage from an urbanized watershed, the tributary was experiencing flashy and erosive flows, which caused accelerated bank erosion and scour at its culvert crossings. City of Rockville Department of Public Works turned to Biohabitats for help in restoring this degraded stream. The Biohabitats team evaluated the Rockcrest channel and developed a restoration plan that used natural channel design techniques to stabilize the channel while also removing failed, hard armoring, enhancing the riparian buffer, and treating invasive plant species. Biohabitats also performed analysis and design to modify storm drain and sanitary structures adjacent to and crossing the stream channel. To ensure that the restoration met the needs of local residents, Biohabitats held public meetings and participated in a special community event. The project also included post-construction monitoring.The tributary is now a stable, self-maintaining system with improved aquatic habitat and a healthy, native riparian buffer.
|Rockcrest Stream Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Rockville, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rockville Forest Conservation Inspection Services|| |
Rockville, Maryland , United States Located northwest of Washington, DC, Rockville is Maryland’s third largest city. Despite its location in this densely populated region, the 12-square-mile city holds 1,035 acres of open space and a deep commitment to protecting its natural resources. Among those resources are city trees. The City Forester’s Office is responsible for maintaining all trees along the street within the public right-of-way, in parks, and around City facilities. Under an on-call contract with the City of Rockville, MD, Biohabitats has been assisting the City Forester’s office in conducting field inspections and plan review associated with the City’s Forest and Tree Preservation Program. Field work has included construction inspections to verify the use of tree protection methods and devices during construction, pre-planting inspections to verify the quality of the plant material, post-planting inspections to verify that approved planting locations, mulching and staking techniques were used, and warranty and bond release inspections to quantify plant survival and determine replacement requirements. Plan review has included reviewing Forest Stand Delineation and Forest Conservation Plans for completeness and accuracy, then providing comments on revisions required
|Rockville Forest Conservation Inspection Services||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Rockville, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rowan University Stormwater Management & Landscape Master Plan|| |
Glassboro, New Jersey , United States From its modest beginnings in 1923 as teacher training school, Rowan University has grown to become a comprehensive public research university with a strong regional presence and reputation. Along with this growth has come substantial reduction of pervious surfaces and inadequate stormwater management, which has adversely impacted the quality and biodiversity of Chestnut Branch, the stream system that runs through the center of campus. Having developed in spurts, Rowan’s 225-acre campus includes buildings of various styles and open spaces of several scales and types. A major roadway bisects the campus, impacting mobility and safety, as well as ecological and campus connectivity. With significant growth predicted for the future, and several capital improvement projects in the planning phases, the University called upon Biohabitats to develop a master plan to guide the creation of sustainable, functional campus landscapes that integrate stormwater management, open spaces, and connectivity. Biohabitats began by dividing the campus into zones, based on watershed catchment areas. Within each zone, we evaluated the interrelationships and environments of open spaces, performed hydrologic analyses to determine potential impacts on current, ongoing and future development by 5, 10 and 100 year storms, and examined overall campus connectivity. The Biohabitats team then identified opportunities for restoration, retrofitting, conservation, and new development within each zone, as well as opportunities to connect the zones to create integrated, functional, and aesthetic open space environments. The team also developed a strategy to guide the implementation of these campus improvements. Inherent in the master plan is the goal to protect, enhance, and create functional or “working” landscapes that demonstrate and embrace water as a natural resource, while also providing benefits such as habitat, microclimates, aesthetics, recreation and respite, social spaces, and learning landscapes. The plan provides a framework for future campus management and planning, while also defining
|Rowan University Stormwater Management & Landscape Master Plan||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Integrated Water Strategies,||Glassboro, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Ruppert’s Ravine Phase II Tributary Restoration|| |
Anne Arundel County, Maryland , United States Ruppert’s Ravine is an unattractive, low quality stream system characterized by channel erosion and sedimentation resulting from unstable soils and a stormwater dominated hydrologic regime. Areas in the stream’s flow path are dominated by invasive species such as multiflora rose and honeysuckle. Outside of the flow path, however, relatively mature woodlands with an open understory persist. Biohabitats was awarded a contract to develop a restoration design for the severely degraded and incised tributary. The design employs a regenerative stormwater conveyance (RSC) approach, converting the headcutting stream channel into a stable seepage wetland ecosystem well linked to its historic floodplain. By recharging the groundwater table, a number of threatened plant species associated with Anne Arundel County’s native acid seep wetland systems can be supported. The design also includes two acres of reforestation.
|Ruppert’s Ravine Phase II Tributary Restoration||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Anne Arundel County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Russo Properties Wetland Delineation|| |
Moonachie, New Jersey , United States Biohabitats delineated tidal and non-tidal wetlands for a 300-acre property. In addition to the wetland delineation and survey, Biohabitats assessed the flora and fauna on site, the potential for future wetland restoration, and conducted a hydrology study to determine groundwater elevations within the freshwater wetland areas located on the site. Russo Development required the delineation to determine which of six parcels could be used for wetland restoration and mitigation purposes and which parcels might be usable for future development in the Meadowlands District properties. The work performed by Biohabitats included delineating and surveying the wetlands in accordance with the 1987 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Wetland Delineation Manual and the 1989 Interagency Federal Manual for Identifying and Delineating Jurisdictional Wetlands. Biohabitats alsoprepared and submitted the Jurisdictional Determination to the Corps.
|Russo Properties Wetland Delineation||Hudson River Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Moonachie, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rutgers University Busch & Livingston Stormwater & Landscape Management Master Plan|| |
Piscataway, New Jersey , United States Applying a holistic, ecosystems-based approach, Biohabitats developed a Stormwater and Landscape Management Master Plan (SWLMMP) for the Busch and Livingston Campuses of Rutgers University. The Biohabitats team began by developing a sound understanding of the existing ecological conditions and green infrastructure resources of the 1,700 acres of campus and surrounding areas. The Biohabitats team was then able to explore opportunities to enhance and integrate these assets throughout the campuses while also providing the highest level of water quality and quantity controls. The recommended strategy considered fiscal efficiency of treatment measures that optimize treatment capability, ecological function and landscape position. Long-term operation and maintenance considerations were also factored into the strategy to account for desired longevity and performance. The overall planning approach for this project focused on conservation, restoration and retrofitting and sustainable landscape and stormwater management for future development. Biohabitats identified principles and techniques that could be applied throughout various University settings, yet were specific enough to reflect the unique ecological characteristics and opportunities on the Busch and Livingston campuses.
|Rutgers University Busch & Livingston Stormwater & Landscape Management Master Plan||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Piscataway, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Rutgers University Cook/Douglass Stormwater & Landscape Management Master Plan|| |
New Brunswick, New Jersey , United States Biohabitats developed a Stormwater and Landscape Management Master Plan (SWLMMP) for the Cook/Douglass campus of Rutgers University, utilizing the same holistic, ecosystems-based approach that it employed to successfully develop SWLMMPs for two other Rutgers’ campuses. The Biohabitats team began by developing a sound understanding of the existing ecological conditions, which included GIS basemap analysis of existing topographic, geologic, soil, and watershed data. The team then conducted field assessments to gain an understanding of current green infrastructure resources and further opportunities for on-campus stormwater management. To conduct a thorough watershed assessment, Biohabitats divided the Cook/Douglass campus into six major drainage basins or catchments, based on their unique discharge points. Various storm events were modeled for each catchment in order to understand how stormwater flow of different magnitudes occurs throughout the campus. In the field, the Biohabitats team examined existing conditions and identified opportunities for the implementation of stormwater management techniques, such as constructed wetlands, bioretention, and biofiltration swales. Following the field assessments, the Biohabitats team was able to explore opportunities to enhance and integrate these assets throughout the campus while providing the highest level of water quality and quantity controls. Biohabitats worked closely with a separate team of planners looking at campus wide facilities improvements to ensure that landscape and stormwater opportunities and needs were recognized and incorporated into the facilities master plan update. Inherent in Biohabitats’ master planning approach for the Cook/Douglass campus is the focus on green infrastructure and the need to protect, enhance, or create functional or “working” landscapes that demonstrate and embrace the manner in which water serves as a resource. For this reason, the overall planning approach for this project focused on conservation, restoration, and retrofitting that results in sustainable landscape and stormwater management for future development. Biohabitats identified principles and techniques
|Rutgers University Cook/Douglass Stormwater & Landscape Management Master Plan||Hudson River Bioregion,||Conservation Planning, Integrated Water Strategies,||New Brunswick, New Jersey, United States||featured-project featured|
|Sage Property Levee Repair|| |
Vernonia, Oregon , United States The Nehalem River in northwest Oregon is host to abundant salmonids. This wild river continues to behave like a typical coastal rainforest river, as it frequently accesses its floodplain. Columbia County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), working in coordination with the Oregon State office of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), received Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) funds to aid private landowners in Columbia County. Biohabitats was contracted to reconstruct a flood protection berm on private property that eroded and breached during the December 2015 floods, threatening the Sage family residence and agricultural outbuildings. Biohabitats worked with NRCS engineering staff and SWCD project managers to revise the initial design to provide greater flood protection while staying within the project permit conditions, budget, and schedule. Biohabitats facilitated an on-site design revision meeting, secured the specified material, prepared the site, deconstructed the existing failed berm, and installed a new berm to meet the geotechnical specifications set by the project plans. The landowners were left with a much longer, higher, wider, and compacted berm than what was originally constructed on the site. The late fall timing of the project permit acquisition did not provide enough time for the 2016 in-water work period portion of the project. Biohabitats plans to return to the site during the 2017 in-water work period to install the bioengineered bank portion of the project, which includes engineered log jams and soil encapsulated lifts along the bank of the Nehalem River.
|Sage Property Levee Repair||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Vernonia, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
Redwood City, California , United States Biohabitats provided ecological restoration and sustainable design services for a 1,400-acre property in the San Francisco Bay region. Using a green neighborhood development approach, the program encompasses a variety of mixed uses seamlessly integrated into a green infrastructure of stormwater management, wildlife habitat, parks, open space and landscape restoration buffers. Biohabitats composed a set of sustainability guidelines for the project outlining water, energy, ecology, transportation, materials, and livability goals, most of which surpass LEED Gold certification requirements for Neighborhood Development. The project not only involves a significant landscape restoration and conservation component, but also a commitment to sustainable design throughout the development. Innovative and comprehensive stormwater management strategies were integrated throughout the development and water harvesting and reuse is a significant component of the program. Biohabitats participated in and led community design charrettes, public workshops, government agency workshops, and roundtables on ecological restoration, water quality, sustainability and habitat throughout the design process.
|Saltworks||Regenerative Design,||Redwood City, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Saltworks Carbon Emissions Comparison|| |
Redwood City, California , United States Biohabitats provided ecological restoration and sustainable design services for a 1,400-acre property in the San Francisco Bay region. Using a green neighborhood approach, the development encompasses a variety of mixed uses seamlessly integrated into a green infrastructure of stormwater management, wildlife habitat, parks, open space and landscape restoration buffers. As part of the sustainability guidelines Biohabitats evaluated the carbon reduction and sequestration potential of the proposed project. A final report calculated and compared the projected carbon footprint of the proposed transit-oriented development to that of an average local greenfield commuter development. The research results indicated that providing residences close to jobs significantly reduces transportation-related carbon production. These carbon savings, combined with those based on projected residence and business energy efficiency, made the case for locating residences near jobs even stronger. The final report also included a comparison of the development’s projected annual net reduction in carbon production to that of the carbon sequestration potential of restored saltmarsh ecosystems. To help ensure true stakeholder involvement in the project, Biohabitats participated in and led community design charrettes, public workshops, government agency workshops, and roundtable discussions on ecological restoration, water quality, sustainability and habitat throughout the design process.
|Saltworks Carbon Emissions Comparison||Regenerative Design,||Redwood City, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Sam’s Branch Tributary Watershed Assessment and Baseline Stream Monitoring|| |
Harford County, Maryland , United States Biohabitats is providing watershed assessment and stream monitoring services to establish baseline conditions in this predominantly residential drainage area. The goal of the project is to identify problems and pollution sources and recommend upland and stream corridor restoration opportunities. The project involves an upland assessment, the development of conceptual recommendations for stormwater retrofit and BMPs and surveys of physical/geomorphic condition, riparian condition, water quality and quantity, and instream biological condition. Because restoration opportunities will likely involve public education, Biohabitats is also preparing, conducting and evaluating a community survey to determine citizen’s: behaviors affecting their watershed; awareness of their watershed and its conditions; and willingness to change behaviors that negatively impact their watershed. Baseline monitoring efforts include stage/discharge, temperature, stream cross sections, profiles, channel stability and habitat survey, fisheries and benthic macroinvertebrate data, tributary baseflow and storm event water quantity and quality sampling and all relevant analyses of the data. A suite of upland assessments includes windshield surveys of drainage area to characterize homeowner practices related to lawn care, pet waste management, and household and automotive waste handling. In addition, this effort will identify simple and cost effective stormwater retrofit opportunities including source reduction such as downspout disconnection, tree planting opportunities, and impervious cover reduction. The data collected during this assessment and monitoring will not only support problem identification and recommendations for improvements, but will also provide a pre-implementation database to be compared with post-implementation database documenting water quality, quantity and biological improvements along Sam’s Branch.
|Sam’s Branch Tributary Watershed Assessment and Baseline Stream Monitoring||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Conservation Planning,||Harford County, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|San Antonio River Improvements Project Concept Design|| |
San Antonio, Texas , United States To prevent flooding around San Antonio, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had reconfigured and reconstructed the San Antonio River with a trapezoidal channel, flat bottom, and floodplain levees. Recognizing the impacts of the flood control channel on aquatic life, water quality, and quality of life, the Corps, along with the San Antonio River Authority, developed an ambitious plan to restore over 13 miles of the river. Biohabitats, a key member of a team led by the SWA Group, helped prepare the San Antonio River Improvements Plan, a master plan to restore habitat, water quality, and recreation opportunities. Biohabitats’ responsibilities included comprehensive geomorphic assessment, hydrologic and hydraulic (H&H) modeling, community stakeholder facilitation, and preparation of preliminary engineering and concept plans. A key project goal was to not compromise existing flood elevations and to increase floodwater capacity wherever feasible. Biohabitats modeled proposed channel modifications using HEC-RAS. Critical to the modeling effort was the estimation of roughness coefficients due to proposed revegetation of the floodplain and re-meandering of the river channel. Through research and collaboration with peer H&H modeling professionals, Biohabitats was able to develop roughness coefficients for various revegetation scenarios and meandering patterns. The plan was enthusiastically adopted and approved by the City council and river authority board.
|San Antonio River Improvements Project Concept Design||Regenerative Design,||San Antonio, Texas, United States||featured-project featured|
|San Diego Wild Animal Park Water Master Plan|| |
San Diego, California , United States The San Diego Wild Animal Park is a zoo in the San Pasqual Valley area of San Diego, California. It is one of the largest tourist attractions in the city and Southern California. The Park houses a fabulous array of wild and endangered animals including species from the continents of Africa, Asia, Europe, North and South America, and Australia. The animals are housed in free-range enclosures similar to their natural environments. The park, visited by 2 million people annually, has an area of 1,800 acres (7 km²) and, in 2005, housed 3000 animals of more than 400 species plus 3,500 species of unique plants. Biohabitats participated in a master planning exercise for storm water management and restoration of ponds and water sheds. Overgrazing of the enclosures and concentrations of large animals led to accumulations of animal manure and sediment in habitat/stormwater ponds. Biohabitats identified opportunities to implement a series of techniques including stormwater wetlands for sediment control, edge details for bank protection and animal access control, and reed beds for treatment of pond sediment and organic matter. These techniques were included in the master plan not only for water management (reuse for irrigation) but also to control nutrients and sediment in off-site discharges of storm water.
|San Diego Wild Animal Park Water Master Plan||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||San Diego, California, United States||featured-project featured|
|Santa Cruz Quilehtla Wastewater Treatment System|| |
Quilehtla,Tlaxcala , Mexico Quilehtla is a small community of 6,000 people east ofMexico City in the Central Highlands. The community required a simple wastewater treatment system that required little or no maintenance, was inexpensive to build, and had no machinery. The requirements at Quilehtla are common in many small Mexican communities. The wastewater treatment system consists of modified Imhof tanks for primary treatment, sub-surface flow constructed wetlands for advanced secondary treatment, and reed beds for treatment of sludge from the Imhof tank. The system is totally passive and is capable of treating both wastewater and sludge. The water quality consistently meets a 20/20 design standard and requires a minimal amount of energy to operate. Additionally, the system was constructed with local labor and 90% local materials.
|Santa Cruz Quilehtla Wastewater Treatment System||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Quilehtla,, Tlaxcala, Mexico||featured-project featured|
|Santa Fe Botanical Garden Stormwater Management|| |
Santa Fe, New Mexico , United States The Santa Fe Botanical Garden is an increasingly popular destination, attracting more the 30,000 visitors a year and providing educational opportunities for the local community and beyond. Accordingly, the garden is now building a considerable expansion to their facilities: a new set of garden features called Ojos y Manos. Biohabitats was contracted to design the water management system for the new gardens. The site is situated in a severely eroded arroyo, so Biohabitats’ first task was to stabilize and restore several fingers of the existing gullies. The second set of designs developed a comprehensive stormwater system for the site and extended the potable water lines from nearby visitor space into the new construction. The Biohabitats design brings functioning and attractive stormwater channels through the garden spaces, allowing seepage that passively irrigates the site’s trees. In addition, Biohabitats helped design and install two raingardens to capture and retain precipitation onsite while enhancing the diversity of the garden’s plantings. Based on the success of that design collaboration, Biohabitats was also asked to provide a preliminary analysis of the potential to develop onsite wastewater treatment there, to serve as a more environmentally sensitive approach than piping about 1,250 gallons of water per day offsite to the city’s sewer system.
|Santa Fe Botanical Garden Stormwater Management||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Santa Fe Greenhouses Rainwater Harvesting and Reuse|| |
Santa Fe, New Mexico , United States Santa Fe Greenhouses is a full-service retail greenhouse and tree nursery that specializes in waterwise plants that are appropriate for the region. Since water is an expensive necessity for nursery operations, a rainwater harvesting system was an obvious addition. As land is at a premium in this urban environment, above ground cisterns were not acceptable. Using a greenhouse roof collection system, and an underground cistern (Invisible Structures Rainstor®), Biohabitats engineered a rainwater reuse system that provided rainwater for the spray irrigation system in the greenhouses. Use of the Invisible Structure system allowed Santa Fe Greenhouses to store nursery stock on top of the cistern. Biohabitats also transformed a pond on the property, which had become an eyesore, into a demonstration garden in which runoff from parking lots and roads was managed through a sedimentation and detention pond featuring native plants.
|Santa Fe Greenhouses Rainwater Harvesting and Reuse||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Santa Fe River Greenways|| |
Santa Fe County, New Mexico , United States In a 1774 report to the Spanish crown Don Pedro O’Crowly described the Santa Fe River: “Santa Fe was founded … at the foot of a high mountain range from which flows a crystal clear river full of small but choice trout.” The Santa Fe river valley, like so many places in the Southwest, has seen a transition of land use from small irrigated farms to urban development. Over the years the middle reaches of the river valley became steadily degraded by the cumulative effects of water diversion, over grazing, gravel mining, and urban development. Santa Fe County has taken on the challenge of restoring the ecologic condition of the river and is in the midst of a comprehensive Greenways project to restore the river corridor and create parks and a continuous 12-mile pedestrian/bicycle trail. Working with the City of Santa Fe and community groups, the County has implemented several segments of the project and brought in Biohabitats to assist with the work. Channel incision in the reach is severe in places due to past disturbance by mining activities which is made worse by flashy urban runoff. Banks have eroded and the flood plain has become disconnected from the channel in many sections exacerbating stability problems. Non-native exotic plant species have invaded the abandoned flood plains. Biohabitats staff performed a fluvial geomorphic survey of the reach and analyzed the data to determine the characteristic channel depth and width parameters for a stable design. The geomorphic data was then used in engineering design for regenerative channel restoration using natural materials. In incised reaches the Biohabitats design employs boulder grade control structures to raise the degraded channel bottom. Boulder side slope protection reinforced with native willow plantings provides protection from high water velocities at the outsides of bends
|Santa Fe River Greenways||Southwest Basin and Range Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Santa Fe County, New Mexico, United States||featured-project featured|
|Savage Branch Environmental Site Design|| |
Savage, Maryland , United States When officials in Howard County, Maryland, a highly urbanized municipality located between Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD, planned to renovate the Howard County Library System’s (HCLS) Savage Branch, they envisioned it as a model for best practices for stormwater treatment, and a place to support their Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) curriculum. For help in realizing this vision, they turned to Biohabitats. Water from the site drains to a Use IV recreational trout stream, and ultimately, to the Chesapeake Bay. Through a design-build contract, Biohabitats transformed the branch’s landscape from a concrete and asphalt-dominated site to a functioning, engaging space that enhances local ecology, beauty, and learning opportunities. With input from County agencies and HCLS staff, Biohabitats crafted a design which distributes stormwater to multiple treatment points and uses natural, vegetated systems, porous paving, and cisterns to store runoff and filter pollutants from the water before it flows off site. These techniques, which mimic natural hydrologic conditions by retaining and slowly releasing runoff close to the source, not only clean polluted water, but help restore natural flow patterns. The site’s most unique feature is a multi-tiered “stormplanter,” comprised of interconnected cells containing native wetland plants and lined with bench seating. The planter captures stormwater from the building’s roof, filters it through the wetland cells, and allows clean water to soak into the soil. A hand pump provides customers of all ages with the opportunity to draw filtered water from the planter and send it along a concrete flume reminiscent of the nearby historic Savage Mill. The renovated landscape also includes native rain gardens, and porous pavers. Structural soils support the pavers while nourishing an urban tree canopy that shades the parking lot and plaza. By filtering and storing water through the soils and giving space
|Savage Branch Environmental Site Design||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design,||Savage, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Serenbe Community Wastewater Collection, Treatment and Reuse System|| |
Fulton County, Georgia , United States Located within a half-hour’s drive from Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, the 100-acre Serenebe community is a model for the future of balanced development in the U.S. Focused on land preservation, agriculture, energy efficiency, green and high density building, walkability, arts and culture, and community living for multiple generations, the development includes private residential homes, commercial space, art galleries, original shops, stables, and a 20-room inn with conference facilities. Serenbe’s land plan calls for the preservation of at least 70% of its acreage while accommodating as many, or more people as traditional subdivision-style developments, which typically disturb nearly 80%. 30 acres are devoted to farming. The Serenbe Farm is certified organic and biodynamic, with a thriving CSA program and Saturday markets. Dubbed “Sonoma for the New South” by the New York Times, the community is home to three thriving restaurants. Biohabitats designed and permitted a community wastewater collection, treatment and reuse system that is in keeping with the development’s environmental stewardship goals. A small diameter collection system minimized construction impact and damage to the environment by following the topography of the land and being kept within the roadways. The system consists of primary treatment (septic tanks at each home), subsurface flow constructed wetlands, recirculating sand filters and UV disinfection. Treated wastewater, reclaimed water, is supplied to a subsurface irrigation system in a beautiful pasture in the landscape. The current operating system has approximately 30,000 gallons per day. As additional phases of the project are developed, additional collection treatment system will go on line. Future systems will include a reuse water system that will deliver a non potable supply for landscape irrigation and toilet flushing throughout the development. Serenebe has garnered numerous awards, including The Atlanta chapter of the Urban Land Institute’s inaugural Sustainability Award, the Atlanta Regional Commission’s
|Serenbe Community Wastewater Collection, Treatment and Reuse System||Southeast Atlantic Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Integrated Water Strategies,||Fulton County, Georgia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Severn Feasibility Study and Retrofit Concept Development Study|| |
Anne Arundel County, Maryland , United States As part of Anne Arundel County, Maryland’s efforts to meet 2017 and 2025 TMDL goals for the Chesapeake Bay watershed, the Department of Public Works (DPW) identif