Stream and Wetland Restoration
Streams and adjacent wetland areas are often sources of sediment or are considered at-risk from excessive erosion. RCI has extensive experience in the interdisciplinary analyses necessary to develop natural, self-maintaining stream channels and wetland areas. Our designs and specifications are set up so that the contractor can visualize the desired outcome. We provide project design, construction staking, construction inspection, monitoring and follow-up to demonstrate project success. Several of our projects are described in the following paragraphs:
Lonely Gulch Stream Restoration
RCI designed and managed construction for the restoration of approximately 200 feet of moderately steep, cobble-type stream channel on the west shore of Lake Tahoe. The project included removal of a concrete dam and concrete-lined reservoir, which were replaced with a natural channel. RCI designed new wetland flood plains and overhanging vegetated stream banks using soil-wrap technology. Design concepts were based upon Rosgen stream classification parameters, which were measured in undisturbed stream reaches immediately upstream of the project location. Plant material collections and propagation were coordinated with the Nevada Division of Forestry to provide indigenous plant materials for revegetation. The Lonely Gulch Stream Restoration project was selected as the 1997 recipient of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Annual Building and Erosion Control Award in the restoration project category.
Edgewood Creek Stream Restoration
Early in this century, Edgewood Creek was diverted from its natural alignment through the area that is currently occupied by the Edgewood Golf Course. Since that time, the creek has downcut as much as 7 feet in places – creating bank sloughing and channel erosion, as well as degrading from the overall aesthetic quality of the golf course. RCI was retained to assess and design approximately 1,300 feet of the creek while enhancing the overall aesthetic qualities of both the creek and areas adjacent to it. The project involved conducting site assessments, field surveys, fisheries habitat evaluations, and developing channel stabilization criteria using the Rosgen method of stream classification and critical tractive force analysis. RCI developed full construction plans and specifications, incorporating native and adapted vegetation species into the stabilization design. The project also includes a series of structures designed to restore accessibility throughout this reach to the indigenous trout population.
Bagley Valley Watershed Restoration Project
The RCI restoration team worked with US Forest Service specialists in all phases of stream and watershed restoration for this project. The restoration team analyzed and surveyed the watershed, designed stream restoration construction documents, and completed the NEPA / CEQA environmental documentation. The Bagley Valley watershed consists of approximately 6,400 acres and the main stream channel is 3.6 miles long. In order to avoid the risk of significant soil erosion due to construction activities, construction of the project is being phased over several years. RCI worked closely with the US Forest Service specialists in selecting the restoration techniques that will have the greatest success and benefit to the watershed, while minimizing the risk and disturbance.