Fish Passage & Screening
Client: Trout Unlimited
Under contract with Trout Unlimited, Waterways led design and construction phase engineering efforts for the removal of a fish passage barrier on San Clemente Creek, a major tributary to the Carmel River. Our design team included Streeter Group (structural engineer) and CMAG Engineering (geotechnical). Work included topographic mapping, hydraulic modeling, concept level design alternatives analysis, and development of final 100% level design drawings. Waterways coordinated with the Resource Conservation District of Monterey County to provide technical support for permitting efforts and then coordinated engineering support during project implementation in the summer of 2020.
Client: Johnson Creek Watershed Council
Kelley Creek is a moderate gradient tributary to Johnson Creek that flows from south to north near the boundary between Clackamas and Multnomah Counties. The channel is incised and has been impacted by past land uses which have most likely straightened and ditched the channel to accommodate crossings and local and regional roads, limit flooding, and utilize adjacent areas, including historic floodplain, for agricultural use. Waterways was hired by the Johnson Creek Watershed Council (JCWC) to develop designs and help oversee construction of a fish passage project over an existing dam along Kelley Creek. The project site is located on an approximately 16- acre property that has been owned and managed for multiple generations. The property is primarily residential though the owner does graze cattle and the owner holds a water right for an off-channel pond that is primarily a landscape feature though historically it may have been used to store water for irrigation. Prior to project implementation, water entered the pond through a gravity fed system that consists of the approximately five-foot high diversion dam and intake pipe. This dam presented a total fish passage barrier for all fish species.
Client: California State Parks- Diablo Vista District
The Mitchell Creek Riparian Restoration and Fish Passage Improvement Project provides for removal of four small dams and the decommissioning of defunct access roads along a reach of Mitchell Creek, within Mount Diablo State Park. The design includes approximately 400 feet of constructed roughened channel to provide fish passage through the grade transition created by the various impoundments. In addition to the fish passage improvements, the project removed aproximately 2,500 cubic yards of impounded sediments from upstream of the site to restore floodplain function and reduce local bank erosion. The design included the installation of large wood elements obtained on site to provide bank stability and enhanced pool development. Waterways provided construction oversight for the project.
Client: Scappoose Bay Watershed Council
Waterways was retained by the Scappoose Bay Watershed Council to develop bid-ready engineering drawings for six culverts on Salmon and Cox Creeks in the Scappoose Bay Watershed that were identified as high priority fish passage barriers during an assessment conducted in 2001. The design approach consisted of replacing each culvert with a bottomless arch culvert using streambed simulation criteria established by NOAA Fisheries and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Client: South Coast Habitat Restoration
South Coast Habitat Restoration contracted with Waterways to provide design services for the improvement of fish passage conditions at Widdoes Crossing, a private road crossing on Gobernador Creek. Fish passage conditions at the site were severely impacted by incision of the streambed below a concrete and boulder ford which created an 8 foot hydraulic drop.
Client: South Coast Habitat Restoration
Waterways was retained by South Coast Habitat Restoration to prepare designs for improving fish passage at five barriers along Gaviota Creek. The sites are located north of Gaviota and directly adjacent to Highway 101. Each barrier is composed of a concrete grade control structure, originally installed to keep the creek from undermining Highway 101. Design concepts range from structural modification of individual weirs to complete removal and channel realignment.
Client: MCS, Corp.
Waterways recently prepared detailed engineering plans and specifications to construct a wetland mitigation site in the historic floodplain of Yakima River in Washington. The site was historically leveled and channelized for livestock grazing before being purchased by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). BLM has been managing the property to reduce invasive weeds for several years in anticipation of this project, which was initiated as a mitigation site for a nearby gravel mining operation with direct impacts to a nearby wetland.
Client: Latimer Environmental
The Hillsboro Landfill is a construction-demolition waste landfill situated on 400 acres south of Hillsboro, Oregon between SE Minter Bridge Road and the Tualatin River. With the landfill operations located at the northeast end of the property, the south and west sides of the property contain wetland mitigation sites adjacent to the Tualatin River. Waterways was retained to design an outfall from the constructed wetlands located at the south end of the property that provides a geomorphically stable discharge into the Tualatin River.
Client: Wasco County Soil and Water Conservation District
Mill Creek is a moderately-sized tributary to the Columbia River that originates on the eastern slope of Mt. Hood and flows northeast through the City of The Dalles, Oregon. Urbanization along the lower two miles of Mills Creek in the City of The Dalles resulted in the simplification of the aquatic and riparian habitats. In 2011, The Dalles Watershed Council (DWC) commissioned an evaluation of the urbanized reach to assess land use impacts and identify opportunities for habitat restoration. Following the initial assessment, a preliminary engineering design was developed for the Honald/Buyers property. The preliminary design included excavation and connection of a historic side channel that had been partially filled, utilization of an existing side channel as a backwater alcove, installation of a precast spanning bridge across the reconnected side channel, and installation of large wood structures along the channels and floodplain to increase roughness and improve habitat conditions.
Client: West Valley College
Waterways has provided comprehensive planning, grant writing, surveying, design, construction support, and post construction monitoring services for five distinct projects within the West Valley College campus.
- A stream restoration project to restore over 600 linear feet of Vasona Creek within the campus;
- A wetland creation project;
- A 20 acre Riparian Planting Plan along Vasona Creek within the campus, and
- A riparian trail system to provide enhanced access and learning opportunities.
Client: Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County
Waterways contracted with the Santa Cruz County Resource Conservation District (SCRCD) and the State Coastal Conservancy to provide design services for the improvement of fish passage at a stream crossing along Shingle Mill Gulch. The project site had a 6-foot diameter corrugated metal pipe culvert which provided conveyance beneath a private driveway servicing the Koinonia Conference grounds. Hydraulic analyses of the culvert determined that it was undersized for design flood flows and presented a fish passage impediment to migrating salmonids.
Client: South Coast Habitat Restoration
Waterways provided design and construction support services to South Coast Habitat Restoration to improve fish passage conditions and vehicular access at a private bridge that crosses Carpinteria Creek. The project site had a concrete-lined channel with drop structures that impeded the upstream migration of salmonids and an undersized bridge that could be overtopped during flood events. Site improvements included removing the concrete-lined channel, recontouring the banks, and revegetating the riparian area.
Client: Monument Soil and Water Conservation District
Cottonwood Creek is a major tributary to the North Fork John Day River and has been identified as critical habitat for Middle Columbia River steelhead. The lower four miles of the creek enters a broad valley, providing opportunities for agriculture that relies on the water of Cottonwood Creek for production. There are currently 12 diversion sites along lower Cottonwood Creek, referred to as points of diversion (POD’s). Many of these diversions result in fish passage barriers during the low flow season. The Monument Soil and Water Conservation district requested Waterways assistance in the assessment of channel stability and fish passage for all 12 PODs and designs for three of the known fish passage barriers.
Client: Sonoma County Public Works
Waterways provided planning and design services to the Sonoma County Department of Transportation and Public Works to address two fish passage barriers associated with stream crossings on County roads. The sites consisted of two large concrete box culverts that were limiting fish passage to high quality spawning and rearing habitat located upstream. At each of these culverts, the natural streambed had incised to at least 4 feet below the culvert outlet, resulting in a partial barrier to migrating salmonids. The design solution included structural retrofit of the culverts using concrete baffles, and the construction of a roughened channel to aggrade the stream profile sufficiently to eliminate the passage barrier. Work included topographic mapping, hydrologic and hydraulic modeling, and preparation of preliminary and final design drawings and specifications.
Client: Sempervirons Fund and Peninsula Open Space Trust
Mill Creek is the largest tributary of San Vicente Creek, in Santa Cruz County, an important stream for steelhead and coho salmon on the central California coast. Mill Creek drains a small, steep watershed containing a localized area of granitic rocks within the highly erosive marine sediments that dominate the Coast Range. Because of this, Mill Creek is an important source of resistant spawning gravel, which is limiting for fish in many watersheds in the central Coast Range. Within the recently-acquired San Vicente Redwoods Preserve, two dams on lower Mill Creek impound gravel and prevent fish passage.
Client: Boy Scouts of America, Monterey Bay Area Council
The Boy Scouts of America own and operate an 800-acre property on the Little Sur River that is used as a summer camp. A flashboard dam was installed in the 1950s to create an impoundment for recreational and educational uses. The seasonal operation of this dam impeded juvenile and adult steelhead passage at the site.
Client: Tualatin River Watershed Council
Waterways staff prepared engineering designs and specifications to improve passage for steelhead and cutthroat trout on a headwater tributary to the Tualatin River in Washington County, OR. The site consisted of a seasonal flashboard dam. Downstream of the flashboard dam the channel had incised 3-feet creating a fish passage barrier under most flow conditions. The design consisted of a series of five rock weirs to build the bed up downstream of the structure and provide fish passage under all flow conditions by creating a backwater condition at the dam. Waterways assisted the Tualatin River Watershed Council (TRWC) with the permitting and construction supervision. The project was constructed in Summer 2008.
Client: San Lorenzo Valley Water District
Waterways is assisting the San Lorenzo Valley Water District by leading the design team on the Fall Creek fish ladder and diversion screening project. The project involves retrofit of an existing fish ladder and diversion intake structure to comply with current DFW and NOAA fish passage and screening standards. The design lowers existing intake screens and weirs while also adding two additional weirs downstream of the existing ladder to reduce individual jump heights. Phase one was constructed in 2014 and phase two is planned for the summer of 2021.
Client: County of San Luis Obispo
Waterways was contracted by the County of San Luis Obispo Public Works Department (Utilities Division) to provide assessment, design and construction observation services for the improvement of fish passage conditions and the protection of a waterline in Arroyo Grande Creek at the Rodriguez Bridge crossing. Our work also included preparation of a design report and response to comments from NMFS fish passage engineers.
Just upstream of Rodriguez Bridge there was an exposed concrete encased water supply line within the bed of Arroyo Grande. Channel scour on the downstream side of the encasement had nearly undermined the encasement, potentially leading to structural failure of the pipeline, and leaving a 3 foot hydraulic drop that created a partial barrier to fish passage.
The designs for fish passage improvements and pipeline included installation of a roughened channel. The channel was reconstructed for approximately 250 feet, using imported rock to provide a smooth transition in the stream profile and hydraulic conditions conducive to fish passage. Two pools and a woody debris structure were incorporated into the project to provide resting and rearing habitat. Additionally, boulder weirs were installed to maintain pool scour and grade control through the project area.
Steelhead were not found in the project reach during pre-construction field surveys. However, steelhead were observed both upstream and downstream of Rodriguez Bridge, and near the installed woody debris structure during post-construction monitoring. The project has greatly improved fish passage conditions and is meeting established success criteria.