Biohabitats Inc. > Portfolio > Search results for 'Design-Build'
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|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, Design-Build,||Cleveland, Ohio, 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|
|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|
|Bonnie Branch Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
Ellicott City, Maryland , United States In helping Howard County, Maryland’s Stormwater Management Division improve water quality in the Patapsco River, a major tributary to the Chesapeake Bay, Biohabitats assessed a half-mile segment of Bonnie Branch, a degraded stream that winds through a residential area on the outskirts of Ellicott City and portions of Patapsco State Park, to explore opportunities for restoration. Historic landscape modifications had caused the stream to become disconnected from its floodplain, with banks in one area measuring as high as 10 feet. Similar conditions were observed in a tributary draining to the project reach. With funding through the County’s Watershed Protection and Restoration Fund and a Chesapeake Bay Trust Fund, the County initiated the restoration of 700 linear feet of Bonnie Branch and 300 linear feet of the nearby tributary. Biohabitats worked with the County and their construction contractor Angler Environmental, to design and construct solutions that restored floodplain connectivity to Bonnie Branch and channel stability to its eroded tributary. For Bonnie Branch, a low-impact approach was taken to grade the banks, forming a bench that allows the stream to flow onto the floodplain and deposit sediment and nutrients. The tributary stabilization involved a similar approach, creating an inset floodplain. Fill material and woody debris removed from Bonnie Branch was harvested and reserved for use in future restoration projects. Months after the project was completed, the restored stream survived an historic, 1000-year storm, which caused severe and devastating flash floods in the region.
|Bonnie Branch Stream Restoration Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Ellicott City, Maryland, 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, Design-Build,||Washington, District of Columbia, 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|
|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 a multidisciplinary team of architects, engineers and general contractors 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. Moving from the planning phase to design, Biohabitats has been coordinating and collaborating with the design team in preparing phased design documents since 2013. For this effort, Biohabitats prepared site development plans and/or waiver petitions, as well as required permits from State and Federal authorities. To date, Biohabitats has designed and overseen twenty acres of forest restoration, including three full seasons of invasive species management. We completed a design-build stream restoration of two thousand linear
|Downtown Columbia Planning, Restoration, and Design||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Regenerative Design,||Columbia, Maryland, 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|
|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, Design-Build,||Hinckley Township, Ohio, 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|
|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, Design-Build,||Summit County, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|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|
|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, Design-Build,||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, Design-Build,||Washington, District of Columbia, 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|
|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|
|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, Design-Build,||Concord Township, Ohio, United States||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, Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||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|
|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|
|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 Large Wood and Riparian Enhancement|| |
Vernonia, Oregon , United States The Columbia Soil and Water Conservation District (the “District”) is working with a private landowner along Rock Creek to address bank erosion that both threatens private property and is degrading aquatic and riparian habitat. Rock Creek is a tributary to the Nehalem River, which provides critical habitat to salmon and steelhead trout. Rock Creek has been hit hard by flood events that have required innovative repair solutions with willing stakeholders. Projects on private property like this support the District’s county-wide approach of engaging urban and rural communities in voluntary conservation. Biohabitats provided technical assistance in developing a preliminary bank stabilization and riparian enhancement design. The design process included a field assessment of existing conditions and active channel processes along with development of a design approach for installation of large woody debris structures along the eroded bank. Structures were configured to redirect flows from the embankment and positioned to minimize disturbance to existing resources. Special fish habitat structures composed of large and small woody debris were also included to provide refugia. Additional design features included a revegetation plan and the installation of downed habitat logs within existing wet meadow depressions. A detailed construction cost estimate was developed to support grant funding requirements and to promote an efficient future design-bid-build or design-build process.
|Rock Creek Large Wood and Riparian Enhancement||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Vernonia, Oregon, 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|
|Rockburn Branch Park Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
Elkridge, Maryland , United States Located along the densely-populated Baltimore-Washington corridor, Rockburn Branch Park is a 400-acre wooded oasis containing freshwater marshes, stream valleys, miles of trails, several multipurpose athletic fields, and numerous recreational facilities. When stormwater from surrounding development began degrading and severely eroding an un-named tributary to Rockburn Branch, a tributary to the Patapsco River that flows through the park, the Howard County Stormwater Management Division took action. With funding through the County’s Watershed Protection and Restoration Fund and the Chesapeake Bay Trust, the County initiated a project to restore stability and function to Rockburn Branch. Working alongside the County and construction contractor Angler Environmental throughout the design and construction process, Biohabitats crafted and implemented a design to reduce erosion while creating opportunities for ecological uplift and nutrient processing. The design incorporated constructed riffles to raise the stream invert using soil from nearby Bonnie Branch stream restoration, saving money on both projects. The riffles also formed deep backwater pools to drive hyporheic and riparian exchange and restore hydrology to adjacent wetlands. In addition, coarse woody debris was salvaged and placed in both the in-stream and riparian areas to improve structural complexity and reduce haul off during construction. The restoration not only stabilized the eroding channel, but enhanced the stream and riparian corridor and yielded nutrient and sediment removal credits toward the County’s MS4/TMDL requirements. Recognizing opportunities for potential uplift coupled with our efficient design process delivered a shovel-ready project in less than one year, saving the County approximately 20% of the allotted budget.
|Rockburn Branch Park Stream Restoration Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Elkridge, Maryland, 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, Design-Build,||Savage, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Silver Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
Russell Township, Ohio , United States Silver Creek was impounded in 1925 to form Silver Lake, which provided power for a small mill. The lake spanned 14 acres, capturing water from a 10.5 square mile watershed. In 1994, when the Geauga Park District acquired the lake, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources ordered the dam be removed because it was detrimental to trout habitat. The Geauga Park District dismantled the dam in 1996. In September of that same year, remnants of Hurricane Fran delivered rainfall that created the wettest month on record. The record high flows caused extreme erosion through the newly created channel in the former lake bed and large quantities of sediment deposition in the channel downstream. After the channel continued to experience erosion for six years, the Geauga Park District retained Biohabitats to design and restore Silver Creek to a stable, natural channel. Using an upstream section of Silver Creek as a reference reach, Biohabitats designed a more stable channel cross section, plan form, and profile. Because the soil in the old lake bed was easily eroded, the design incorporated wood structures such as rootwads, large woody debris deflectors, log toe, and log vanes to stabilize meander bends. Portions of the old channel were converted into wetlands to mimic natural oxbow channels. Native riparian trees, shrubs, grasses, and flowers were planted throughout the project area.
|Silver Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build||Great Lakes Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Russell Township, Ohio, United States||featured-project featured|
|South Boulder Creek Aquatic Habitat Design-Build|| |
Boulder, Colorado , United States South Boulder Creek is a major stream corridor that provides significant ecological and recreational benefits for the City of Boulder. The City Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) department wanted to improve aquatic habitat in approximately two miles of the creek which had suffered the impacts of water diversions, channel modifications, and grazing. Of particular concern was the lack of available overwintering fish habitat during low-flow winter months. To address the low flow concerns, the City negotiated a minimum flow of seven cfs in the winter--an improvement from the previously common low flows of 1 cfs. The Colorado Division of Wildlife, which awarded a ‘Fishing is Fun’ grant to help fund the project, will stock the project area with a Whirling Disease-resistant rainbow trout (Hofer-strain) to try to establish a self-sustaining population for recreational fishing. Biohabitats was selected as the design-build contractor for this major fish habitat restoration project. Because the channel morphologic conditions varied within each reach of the project area, a spectrum of solutions was required. The overall approach is to enhance, create, and maximize fish habitat throughout four reaches by leveraging existing stream features and applying treatments in targeted locations to address specific morphologic issues. Techniques such as boulder clusters, a low flow meander channel, side pools, meander cut off, log pools, log wing deflectors, and woody debris clumps will be used to improve aquatic habitat. Biohabitats completed all Section 404 permitting, including biological assessments for Federally Endangered Species.
|South Boulder Creek Aquatic Habitat Design-Build||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Boulder, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|South Boulder Creek Bank Restoration Design-Build|| |
Boulder, Colorado , United States The City of Boulder, Open Space and Mountain Parks Department (OSMP) maintains a vast array of hiker/biker trails, including a popular trail along South Boulder Creek. In several locations, heavy foot traffic down to the creek had left the banks vulnerable to stream erosion, threatening both the creek and the trail. OSMP recognized the problem and retained Biohabitats to design and build natural bank stabilization for three areas on South Boulder Creek. Biohabitats performed field assessments and developed design-build design drawings in close cooperation with OSMP staff to ensure that the restoration would not only be stable but would also allow the proper function of the trail. OSMP used the design drawings to obtain Federal, State and Local permits to perform the channel work. Shortly before construction was to begin in April 2014, before spring runoff, OSMP still needed a floodplain permit from Boulder County. OSMP turned to Biohabitats to assist with obtaining the floodplain permit. Biohabitats performed the modeling, submitted the necessary computations/reports, and shepherded the permit submittal through to approval. We were able to obtain the floodplain permit within a week, just one day before construction was scheduled to begin. Biohabitats performed the construction with our grading partner, Budhoe’s Backhoe. The construction was completed in only five days, with minimal disruption to trail use. In each of the three areas, the creek channel was realigned to reduce stress on the banks and to allow pedestrian access to the creek via point bars with minimal erosion potential.
|South Boulder Creek Bank Restoration Design-Build||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Boulder, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|South Meadow Lake Restoration Design-Build|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States As part of an on-going effort to ecologically restore degraded landscapes within Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park system, the Natural Lands Restoration and Environmental Education Program (NLREEP) targeted South Meadow Lake. Over the past 50 years, the freshwater lake had been reshaped, and filled and armored to facilitate its conversion to a swimming pool. The lake bottom had been lined with concrete to provide a hard bottom surface. What was once a fully functioning, six-acre lacustrine ecosystem had been systematically converted to a neighborhood swimming pool. Recognizing the ecological and historical significance of South Meadow Lake, NLREEP selected Biohabitats in a design-build capacity to restore South Meadow Lake to a fully functioning lacustrine ecosystem. Biohabitats’ restoration approach began with an assessment of the historical condition of the lake prior to modifications and an examination of current ecological, hydrological and morphological conditions. From there, the Biohabitats team developed concept drawings and a final design and construction package suitable for permitting. The restoration involved removing the concrete bottom, re-contouring the lake bottom and shoreline, and restoring the lake littoral zone by amending soils and revegetating with native freshwater marsh species. A pedestrian trail and interpretive signs were designed and installed, providing the neighborhood with new opportunities for recreation and education.
|South Meadow Lake Restoration Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Spa Creek Headwaters Retrofit & Stream Restoration Design-Build||The headwaters of the Spa Creek watershed flow through Annapolis, MD and ultimately into the Chesapeake Bay at the mouth of the Severn River. The creek is a treasured natural and recreational resource, and it provides habitat for many species native to the Chesapeake Bay. In recent decades, however, development and population growth in the area have put pressure on Spa Creek’s headwaters, causing many of them to become eroded sluiceways through which stormwater swiftly carries sediments and pollutants downstream. To address these problems, the Spa Creek Conservancy, a volunteer organization dedicated to the stewardship of this important tributary, initiated restoration efforts in the watershed’s upper reaches. With assistance from Biohabitats, the Conservancy applied for and received grant funding from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bay Trust Fund. The project includes the restoration of 5,000 linear feet of stream, beginning at an outfall that had been lined with gabions years earlier and ending at a stand of Phragmites established on a sediment deposit formed as a result of channel erosion and upland sediment transport into tidewater. After assessing the site and conducting H&H analyses, Biohabitats crafted a design to establish long-term, stable channel geometry, increase nutrient uptake and other water quality improvements, and enhance aquatic, wetland, and riparian habitat. The design involves removing gabions, creating step pools to slow flows, and raising the channel bed to reconnect the stream to its floodplain. The floodplain reconnection allows stormwater to rehydrate non-tidal wetlands. The design also incorporates the excavation of two acres of Phragmites and restoration of emergent tidal wetlands. Biohabitats design-build capability facilitates the ability of the Spa Creek Conservancy to implement a project of this scale. Biohabitats and our subcontractors executed all elements of the project, including topographic survey, resource mapping, public||Spa Creek Headwaters Retrofit & Stream Restoration Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Annapolis, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Sterling Pond and Josh Ames Structure Ecological Restoration Design-Build|| |
Larimer County, Colorado , United States Throughout the early 20th century, Colorado’s Cache la Poudre River was heavily manipulated for irrigation and mining, particularly in the Fort Collins area. Today, the City of Fort Collins is taking steps to restore flows, fish passage, and ecological function to the river. After working with the City to assess its natural areas and identify opportunities for restoration, Biohabitats implemented the restoration of this priority site: along a 2,000 linear foot reach of the Poudre that had been disconnected from its floodplain by a high berm that was originally constructed to protect an adjacent gravel pit. With mining operations long since completed, the pit had become a pond that offered habitat but did not meet its ecological potential in terms of ecosystem processes. In separating the river from its floodplain, the berm diminished the river’s ecological function and value by reducing the potential for overbank flooding. To make matters worse, a defunct, abandoned, concrete diversion structure for irrigation was located just downstream, creating a barrier to natural ecological and physical processes. Biohabitats’ approach to this design-build project involved three key strategies: widening the riparian zone along the Poudre, creating additional shallow wetland habitat in the pond, and working with The Colorado Water Trust to remove the abandoned dam. Biohabitats and our subcontractor, Budhoe Backhoe, lowered the steep berm on the river bank and placed the excavated material in the adjacent former gravel pit pond to create a mosaic of riparian woodland, wet meadow and emergent wetland. Following the dam removal, Biohabitats restored the channel to recreate a pool and riffle system that offers improved aquatic habitat and fish passage and allows for better sediment transport. Using the sediment from behind the dam, Biohabitats also created benches along the banks, to not only restore a more natural
|Sterling Pond and Josh Ames Structure Ecological Restoration Design-Build||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Larimer County, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Swedish Embassy Rock Creek Bank Stabilization Design-Build|| |
Washington, District of Columbia , United States The nation of Sweden selected a site along the banks of Rock Creek near the Potomac River in Washington, DC for its new embassy in the U.S. Rock Creek, under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service, serves as a valuable natural and recreational resource for the Washington metropolitan region. Concerned about the potential impacts of the new embassy on the physical stability and ecological integrity of Rock Creek, the developers of the site, Armada Hoffler Construction, contracted with Biohabitats to develop a streambank stabilization plan utilizing a natural materials approach. Challenges included a very short construction schedule, logistical constraints, and the project’s high profile, urban location adjacent to the confluence of Rock Creek and the tidal Potomac River. Biohabitats monitored site conditions, including tidal fluctuations, biological benchmarks, and reference sites. We developed alternative design concepts and worked with the designer, architects and developers to develop a shoreline/streambank stabilization approach and hiking/biking path consistent with the site development envelope and building features. We also obtained Federal and local permits, developed conceptual restoration plans, and solicited proposals from five contractors to participate in the completion of the design and construction of the project.
|Swedish Embassy Rock Creek Bank Stabilization Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Washington, District of Columbia, United States||featured-project featured|
|Tarryall Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build|| |
Park County, Colorado , United States Biohabitats was retained by Colorado Open Lands, a land conservation organization, to restore portions of Tarryall Creek along a two-mile reach that flowed through a working ranch. This narrow stream valley had been used for grazing and hay cutting for over 100 years. The riparian buffer contained only sporadic clumps of willows, and the stream banks were severely eroded. The goals of this design-build project were to stabilize eroding banks, re-establish a natural riparian buffer, and provide habitat for trout. A stable reach of Tarryall Creek on private fishing club land was measured and utilized as a reference reach. Biohabitats obtained the 404 permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and approval from the Colorado Department of Wildlife. The design restored a stable pattern and dimension to the degraded reaches while maintaining the existing, stable riffle/pool sequences. Trees and boulders from another location on the ranch were harvested and used to construct log vanes, rootwads, and large, woody debris. These structures, along with gravel/cobble point bar material and transplanted willow clumps, were combined to stabilize eroding banks while also creating cover for trout.
|Tarryall Creek Stream Restoration Design-Build||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Park County, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|
|Tidal Wetland Mitigation for Cox Creek Dredge Disposal Containment Facility|| |
Baltimore, Maryland , United States To satisfy Section 404 Clean Water Act wetland permit conditions, the Maryland Port Administration (MPA) was required to mitigate wetland and open water impacts associated with the rejuvenation of the Cox Creek Dredge Disposal Containment Facility. The facility, which is surrounded by water on three sides, was initially created to service the dredging needs of the Patapsco River and Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The Maryland Environmental Service, working for the MPA, retained Biohabitats as a key design member to assist with the design and construction of a 12-acre tidal estuarine mosaic of open water and emergent marsh. Biohabitats performed site assessments and designed and conducted a monitoring study to evaluate biological, physical and chemical conditions to support the development of restoration plans. Biohabitats assessed tidal hydrology and sediment transport to properly size the tidal connection to the Patapsco River. Biohabitats also developed a comprehensive invasive species management program to treat and manage common reed (Phragmites australis) that threatened to overtake the restored marsh. After preparing design and construction drawings, specifications and a cost estimate, Biohabitats provided permitting assistance and oversaw construction of the marsh, which was implemented as a design-build project. Biohabitats also helped coordinate a volunteer planting effort with the National Aquarium in Baltimore. Within a month of project completion, Hurricane Isabel hit Baltimore with an eight-foot tidal surge, tearing out goose exclusion fencing, pushing river debris (e.g., tree trunks, boats, etc.) across the site, and dramatically altering the sediment transport conditions. Biohabitats continued the monitoring program and used pre- and post-Isabel physical, chemical and biological monitoring data to identify site problems and remediation solutions. The post-hurricane monitoring revealed the restored marsh to be resilient with limited need for remedial measures.
|Tidal Wetland Mitigation for Cox Creek Dredge Disposal Containment Facility||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Baltimore, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Valley Road Channel Restoration Design-Build|| |
Fairgrounds Park, Hagerstown, Maryland , United States Biohabitats was chosen by the City of Hagerstown to lead a design-build effort to restore an unnamed tributary to Hamilton Run, which is a tributary to Antietam Creek. The stream begins at a storm drain outfall and flows approximately 1,000 feet along the edge of a park to Hamilton Run. The two-acre, wooded site was infested with non-native plant species such as Catalpa, Osage orange, Bush honeysuckle, Multi-flora rose, and Clematis. Because the stream channel was mostly on bedrock, Biohabitats recommended enhancing the floodplain with forested wetlands in order to achieve the project’s ecological improvement goal. The project also included a hiker/biker trail with educational signage through the site. Biohabitats assembled from its staff a diverse and experienced project team with a fluvial geomorphologist wetland scientist, forest ecologist, landscape architect, and invasive plant specialist. The design-build team included Meadville Land Service, Ecological Restoration & Management, and Invasive Plant Control. This assemblage of experts in ecological design and implementation provided the City of Hagerstown with a Supplemental Environmental Project that was beyond their initial expectations yet within budget.
|Valley Road Channel Restoration Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Fairgrounds Park, Hagerstown, Maryland, United States||featured-project featured|
|Wallace Property Stabilization/Habitat Structure Design-Build|| |
Clatskanie, Oregon , United States The Clatskanie River, in northwest Oregon, flows through mostly rural agricultural and forestry land. Though it hosts abundant salmonids, uniquely, the river has never had a salmon and steelhead hatchery program implanted in it. Severe flood events during the winter of 2015 forced existing main channel meanders to translate downstream, bringing down large trees and further damaging vulnerable and eroded embankments. Flooding also caused serious bank and channel erosion within the creek. The Columbia Soil and Water Conservation District acquired FEMA Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) funding to support the landowners’ recovery from flood damages and reduce the risk of future channel migration toward their homes. Due to continued erosion during the winter of 2016, Biohabitats was asked to contribute design support regarding modifications for the strategic incorporation of additional wood, rock, and earthen materials; for the adaptation of the stabilization/habitat structure to newly evolved site morphology; and for the enhancement of existing side channel capacities opposite the structure. In June 2017, as construction contractor, Biohabitats performed the installation of the newly redesigned 160-foot long stabilization/habitat structure. The structure includes approximately 160 logs, 150 boulders, 300 rebar connections, and 600 cubic total yards of pit run, native cobble, and earthen fill. Geotextile fabrics were then installed to stabilize the finished ground surface. In the fall of 2017, Biohabitats will return to the site to plant a native riparian vegetation community of willow stakes and potted shrubs.
|Wallace Property Stabilization/Habitat Structure Design-Build||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Clatskanie, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Wallooskee-Youngs Restoration|| |
Astoria, Oregon , United States Where the Wallooskee and Youngs Rivers meet, the Cowlitz Indian Tribe sponsored a project to restore almost 200 acres of agricultural land to a tidal wetland complex. Like many fields in the Lower Columbia, the site was protected by a levee that prevented brackish water from entering with the tides. The levee itself was in disrepair, regularly overtopped and covered in a dense growth of invasive species. Biohabitats worked with a diverse array of stakeholders to convert the ditched, tiled, and seeded pastureland back to a vibrant mosaic of floodplain habitats. Doing so required excavating backwater channels, breaching the levees, removing tide gates, installing a sheet pile wall to protect a highway, and adding large woody debris habitat complexity. The full restoration of the site included altering the vegetative composition as well, removing the invasive species that dominated the levy. Biohabitats provided design-build preconstruction consultation services to a large team that included civil and geotechnical engineers, wetland scientists, and staff from Bonneville Power Administration, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, the National Marine Fisheries Service, and the Army Corps of Engineers. Biohabitats professional services included backwater channel design layout, selecting locations for breaching the levee, producing and reviewing design plans, designing fish salvage and construction sequencing, and providing construction value-engineering and cost estimates. Biohabitats also played a key role in the project’s permitting, including assisting the team on the Biological Assessment, Environmental Impact Statement, and federal and state project permitting.
|Wallooskee-Youngs Restoration||Cascadia Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration,||Astoria, Oregon, United States||featured-project featured|
|Washington Avenue Green Design-Build|| |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , United States The city of Philadelphia recently adopted a new vision for its riverfront. The Delaware River Waterfront Corporation (DRWC) wanted to implement early action projects to help build a constituency of riverfront users and illustrate the City’s commitment to the riverfront. The abandoned Pier 53 provided the perfect opportunity to begin this process. Beyond providing new green space and public river access, the project was viewed by Biohabitats as a way to actively engage South Philadelphians in the restoration and stewardship of their riverfront. DRWC hired Biohabitats to provide turn-key design-build services to create a park along a section of riverfront trail and restore urban habitat. With simplicity, inspiration and sustainability in mind, Biohabitats developed a design for Pier 53 and its surroundings that will serve as a catalyst for regenerating a healthy waterfront, and an incubator for the creation of a greater riverfront greenway. Biohabitats’ approach incorporated elements of sustainable design such as porous paving, the reuse of on-site material, a rain garden, and native plant landscaping. It also created a place to learn about the future of the riverfront and the ecology of the Delaware River. Finally, the site was designed to accommodate a changing riverfront with changing needs and environmental conditions, such as sea level rise.
|Washington Avenue Green Design-Build||Chesapeake / Delaware Bays Bioregion,||Regenerative Design, Design-Build,||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States||featured-project featured|
|Wetland, River, & Floodplain Ecological Restoration Design-Build|| |
Fort Collins, Colorado , United States The City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department manages over 1,000 acres of open space along the Cache La Poudre River, including numerous former gravel pits with significant water resources and habitat values. For several years, the City had been performing small planting projects to enhance natural resource values and the visitor experience. In 2008 and again in 2014, Biohabitats was retained to provide on-call professional consulting and construction services to assist with the assessment, planning, design, permitting, and construction of wetland and riparian restoration projects. Overall project objectives vary and include protecting the City’s natural resources, improving water quality, enhancing aquatic and riparian habitat, and restoring wetland and floodplain functions. Biohabitats performed vegetation assessments, hydrologic evaluations, and geomorphic assessments to support a Conservation Action Planning approach to identify conservation priorities and restoration strategies. Biohabitats prioritized potential restoration projects based on locations where a water source is most predictable and/or controllable; maintaining and expanding previous restoration areas to protect gains; and selecting high visibility locations with partnering or educational opportunities. To date we have designed, permitted, and constructed three projects within two of the natural areas along the Poudre River. These projects have included the removal of flood-control levees to restore floodplain connection, placement of fill material in abandoned gravel pits to create wetland benches, and removal of an old water diversion dam in the river to provide fish passage. These projects created 10 acres of willow shrubland, wet meadow, and emergent wetland; restored 13 acres of riparian forest including native cottonwood regeneration; and improved 1 mile of the Poudre River.
|Wetland, River, & Floodplain Ecological Restoration Design-Build||Southern Rocky Mountain Bioregion,||Ecological Restoration, Design-Build,||Fort Collins, Colorado, United States||featured-project featured|