Miquon School Stream Restoration
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.