Upper Clear Creek Habitat Enhancement
Prior to this project, Clear Creek (near Tacoma and Puyallup) had been confined to a straight ditch with a berm isolating it from its floodplain, which had been degraded by agricultural activities. Herrera designed, permitted, and oversaw construction of a project to enhance the creek, wetlands, and habitat on 44 acres along the creek within the lower Puyallup River valley. Our design provides diverse fish and wildlife habitat. It realigned the creek through the wetland floodplain; installed large woody debris structures, standing snags, hummocks, ponds, and secondary channels in the stream channel and floodplain; removed invasive reed canarygrass; and revegetated the site with emergent, scrub-shrub, and forested communities. Herrera engineers and scientists conducted groundwater monitoring and hydraulic modeling in support of their design work. We prepared applications and worked with regulatory agencies to get project permits from the US Army Corps of Engineers, Washington State Department of Ecology, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and Pierce County. The project received the NWCCC Distinguished Project Award for 2016 Green Project of the Year.