WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
NEWS RELEASE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

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August 21, 2013
Contact: Betsy Lyons (ESRP), 360-902-2572
Patricia Jatczak (EPA grants), 360-902-2597

20 projects receive state grants
to restore Puget Sound shorelines

OLYMPIA – The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has begun distributing $12 million in funding for 20 local projects designed to protect and restore the natural shorelines around Puget Sound.

Project sponsors include local governments, tribes and non-profit organizations from Hood Canal to the San Juan Islands who applied for funding through two competitive grant programs administered by the department.

Funding distributed by WDFW through those programs comes from a combination of state capital funds and federal grants from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Betsy Lyons, who manages WDFW’s Estuary and Salmon Restoration Program (ESRP), said most projects funded this year involve removing unnecessary bulkheads, correcting barriers to salmon passage and restoring tidal functions altered by land-use practices over the past century.

“More than a quarter of Puget Sound’s 2,500-mile shoreline is currently lined with bulkheads or other types of shoreline structures,” Lyons said. “These restoration projects will play an important role in advancing salmon recovery and ensuring our natural areas are healthy and productive.”

Twelve projects will be funded this year through ESRP, which is supported by revenue from the state’s capital construction budget. Six other projects, specifically geared to beach restoration, were funded through EPA grants administered by the WDFW’s Marine and Nearshore Grant Program, and two other projects were funded by both programs.

Patricia Jatczak, WDFW manager for the EPA grant program, said this year’s funding was directed to qualified projects at shoreline parks that are accessible to the public.

“One goal of these projects is to give the public a chance to learn about beach processes and the role shorelines play in salmon survival,” Jatczak said. “People may not realize, for example, that sediment from bluffs is critical in providing new beach material and creating healthy shorelines. Loss of sediment can lead to reduced breeding habitat for nearshore fish such as surf smelt that salmon feed on.”

While both grant programs focus on restoring Puget Sound shorelines and salmon runs, they also provide other public benefits, said ESRP Manager Betsy Lyons.

“These projects provide a number of additional benefits for local communities by creating jobs, reducing the risk of floods and expanding public access to Puget Sound shorelines,” she said.

Here is a summary of the 20 restoration projects funded this year:

CLALLAM COUNTY
3 Crabs Nearshore and Estuarine Restoration ($261,963 – includes $130,981 in federal EPA grant funds)
Grant funds will be used to restore the 3 Crabs site located in the Dungeness estuary for future restoration and to develop designs and permits.  Site prep includes demolition of existing buildings and removal of septic systems.  Designs developed for future restoration will include removal of 5 acres of fill and creosote pilings, shoreline armoring and dike removal, bridge construction and road relocation.
Phase: Design and partial implementation
Sponsor:  North Olympic Salmon Coalition
Contact: Jamie Michel (360) 504-5646

JEFFERSON COUNTY
Dabob Bay Shoreline Restoration and Protection ($210,000)
Grant funds will be used to permanently protect and restore 1,200 linear feet of saltmarsh and riparian forest shoreline along inner Tarboo-Dabob Bay.  Restoration actions include removal of a house, utilities, driveway, shoreline fill, and a bulkhead.
Phase: Restoration and acquisition
Sponsor:  Northwest Watershed Institute
Contact:  Peter Bahls (360) 385-6786

Discovery Bay Railroad Grade, Beach and Estuary Restoration ($1,219,912)
Grant funds will be used restore 16 acres of salt marsh and estuary.  Restoration will include removal of 1,465 feet of a railroad grade and 3 trestles around and between Salmon and Snow Creek; relocation of 3,200 ft. of private waterline that currently runs along the railroad grade; removal of 1,250 feet of shoreline armoring and 11,160 cubic yards of nearshore fill; and planting over 3.9 acres of shoreline with native trees and shrubs.
Phase: Restoration
Sponsor:  North Olympic Salmon Coalition
Contact:  Kevin Long (360) 379-8051

Kilisut Harbor Restoration ($427,475)
Grant funds will be used to develop a final design and permits for the removal of 450 feet of causeway acting as a barrier to tidal flow and fish passage at Kilisut Harbor, a coastal inlet between Indian and Marrowstone Islands near the convergence of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Puget Sound, and Hood Canal. This project would restore unimpeded fish access to 2,300 acres of highly productive salmonid rearing, foraging and migration habitat in Kilisut and improve water quality and tidal flushing within the bay.
Phase: Final design
Sponsor:  North Olympic Salmon Coalition
Contact: Jamie Michel (360) 504-5646

Fort Townsend Shoreline Restoration ($52,126; source federal EPA funds)
Grant funds will be used to develop a feasibility assessment, final design, and permitting for the removal and of roughly 1,400 cubic yards of fill and large rip-rap from a bluff-backed beach and adjacent intertidal area in the park. The project also entails restoring approximately 9,000 square feet of nearshore habitat benefiting salmonids and forage fish and waterfowl at Fort Townsend State Park in Jefferson County.
Phase: Feasibility and design
Sponsor:  Northwest Straits Foundation
Contact: Joan Drinkwin (360) 733-1725

KING COUNTY
Seahurst Park North Shoreline Restoration ($1,209,912; includes $600,000 in federal EPA funds)
Grant funds will be used to expand upon beach restoration at Seahurst Park in Burien that was initiated in 2004-05.  This Phase II restoration of the north half of the park includes removal of armoring along approximately 2,800 feet of shoreline, restoration of natural beach slopes, re-vegetation, and connection of the riparian vegetation and sediment supply to the aquatic portion of nearshore.
Phase: Implementation
Sponsor:  City of Burien
Contact: Steve Roemer (206) 248-5513

KITSAP COUNTY
West Bainbridge Shoreline Protection ($396,000)
Grant funds will be used to permanently protect some of the most intact nearshore habitat on Bainbridge Island. The acquisition involves two contiguous undeveloped parcels, including 4.3 acres of tidelands, approximately 550 feet of shoreline, and 7.57 acres of uplands that host eel grass beds, active feeder bluffs, sandy beach, riparian vegetation, mixed mature forest, and open meadow
Phase: Acquisition
Sponsor:  Bainbridge Island Land Trust
Contact: Brenda Padgham (206) 842-1216

Carpenter Creek Estuary Restoration and Protection (TBD - partial award)
Grant funds will be used to permanently protect 56 acres of high-quality estuarine intertidal habitat and furnish a final design for the replacement of the West Kingston Road culvert. Carpenter Creek Estuary, located in Kingston, is one of very few remaining intact, undeveloped forested intertidal bays in the South Central Puget Sound.  Replacement of this culvert is the final step in restoration of Carpenter Creek Estuary and builds on previous restoration work, which replaced the South Kingston Road culvert that was replaced with the popular Stillwaters fish passage bridge.
Phase: Acquisition and design
Sponsor:  Kitsap County
Contact: Patty Charnas (360) 337-4558

MASON COUNTY
Skokomish Estuary Restoration – Skokomish Flats ($344,444)
Grant funds will be used to complete this third phase of the Skokomish River Estuary Restoration located within the exterior boundaries of the Skokomish Indian Reservation, near the Great Bend of Hood Canal in Mason County. This phase will restore estuarine functions and fish passage by re-connecting wetland channels through the salt marsh, restoring tidal channels, enhancing roads to connect natural wetland flow or tidal channels, and filling or enhancing ditches for wetland channel habitat.  A total of 14 culverts will be abandoned; 3 small bridges constructed, and 36 culverts installed through roadways that were built across historic channels.
Phase: Implementation
Sponsor: Mason Conservation District (with Skokomish Tribe)
Contact:  Rich Geiger (360) 877-5213

Twanoh State Park Beach Restoration ($402,900; source federal EPA grant funds)
Grant funds will be used to restore nearshore and delta processes in Twanoh State Park in southern Hood Canal. The first phase of the project will include the removal of fill, shoreline armoring, and a concrete bulkhead; installation of soft shore armoring; beach nourishment; culvert replacement; large wood placement; and marine riparian planting. This will result in the restoration of a historic barrier embayment on the eastern shoreline of the park, improved beach profile along 1,500 feet of marine shoreline, and improved habitat conditions in the lowest reach of Twanoh Creek (below the Highway 106 culvert).
Phase: Implementation
Sponsor: Wild Fish Conservancy
Contact: Micah Wait (425) 788-1167

PIERCE COUNTY
Titlow Restoration ($92,065; source federal EPA grant funds)
Grant funds will be used to develop design and permits documents for replacement of a culvert with a 40 foot railroad bridge to improve connectivity and fish passage between Titlow Lagoon and Puget Sound. Project efforts will also develop design and permit documents for removal of pool and parking lot infrastructure on the footprint of the historic Lagoon/saltwater wetland for expansion of the existing lagoon and restoration of riparian and salt marsh habitat. Historically, Titlow Lagoon provided over five acres of intertidal habitat, with over 25 acres of marsh and forested wetland habitat. Currently the outlet to the lagoon is impounded by a 4-foot culvert which greatly inhibits fish passage and tidal connection between the lagoon and Puget Sound.
Phase: Design
Sponsor: South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group
Contact: Kristin Williamson (360) 412-0808

SAN JUAN COUNTY
Brown Island Feeder Bluff Bulkhead Removal ($69,975; source federal EPA grant funds)
Grant funds will be used to restore nearshore processes, improve upper beach habitat and provide a demonstration project for shoreline managers and landowners through removal of unnecessary shoreline armoring. The project will restore approximately 4,000 square feet of shoreline to its historic complexity. This includes the direct uncovering of 767 square feet of beach and restoration of the immediate adjacent buffer, restoring coastal processes such as upper intertidal and back shore sediment, sediment source, littoral drift, and other natural processes such as detritus potential and recruitment.
Phase: Implementation
Sponsor: Friends of the San Juans
Contact: Tina Whitman (360) 378-2319

Thatcher Bay Restoration ($260,055)
Grant funds will be used to supplement previously awarded grants for the removal of 12,900 cubic yards of wood waste covering 1.8 acres of valuable nearshore habitat on Blakely Island in the San Juan archipelago. Thatcher Bay was the site of a wood milling operation from 1879 to 1942. Mill waste in the form of sawdust and wood chips was disposed of in the intertidal area surrounding the mill. Wood chips in the upper intertidal area have completely buried substrates suitable for forage fish spawning. The site will be refilled with sediments common to the surrounding areas.
Phase: Implementation
Sponsor:  Skagit Fisheries Enhancement Group
Contact: Alison Studley (360) 336-0172  

SKAGIT COUNTY
Bowman Bay Armoring Removal ($55,820; source EPA grant funds)
Grant funds will be used perform a feasibility assessment and develop conceptual designs for the removal of approximately 540 feet (1,600 tons) of armoring from the shoreline at Bowman Bay in Deception Pass State Park. Restoration of the shoreline and the cross-shore sediment transport processes at Bowman Bay will improve forage fish spawning habitat, improve nearshore habitat for juvenile salmon and bull trout, and restore resilience to the system, allowing for lateral shifts in sea grass beds in response to sea level rise.
Phase: Feasibility and Design
Sponsor:  Northwest Straits Commission
Contact: Joan Drinkwin (360) 733-1725

Fir Island Farms Restoration ($525,239)
Grant funds will be used to develop final designs and permits for restoration of 126 acres of former estuarine habitat at the Fir Island Farm site, owned by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) as part of the Skagit Wildlife Area. A feasibility study was completed and a preferred alternative for restoration was selected that includes dike removal and construction of a 5,800 foot set-back levee. The primary objective of the restoration project is to restore juvenile chinook salmon rearing habitat area, within the constraints of other land use. 
Phase: Design
Sponsor: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
Contact: Brian Williams (360) 466-4345

SNOHOMISH COUNTY
Leque Island Alternatives Analysis and Final Design ($520,673)
Grant funds will be used to evaluate options for restoration of estuarine wetlands on diked lands owned by WDFW within the Leque Unit of the Skagit Wildlife Area. The project has the potential to restore up to 294 acres of estuary for the benefit of salmon and other wetland dependent wildlife. Ducks Unlimited and WDFW will collaboratively implement an analysis of tidal restoration options with local stakeholder input, and select a preferred alternative that can be designed, permitted and implemented by 2016.
Phase: Design
Sponsor:  Ducks Unlimited
Contact: Graham Peters (360) 885-2011

Smith Island Estuary Restoration ($2,000,000)
Grant funds will be used for restoration of up to 400 acres of estuarine wetlands at the Smith Island restoration site located in the heart of the Snohomish Estuary. Proposed restoration actions include construction of a set-back dike, removal or breaching of the existing dike, excavation or initiation of started channels and reconnection to historic channels. This restoration project is critical for achieving 10-year estuary habitat benchmarks identified in the Snohomish Basin Salmon Conservation Plan to recover Chinook salmon.
Phase: Restoration
Sponsor:  Snohomish County
Contact: Bob Aldrich (425) 388-6424

Howarth Park Restoration ($600,000; source federal EPA funds)
EPA Grant funds will be used to remove shoreline armoring from the beach at Howarth Park where existing riprap bank protection and associated fill will be removed from the beach to expand the backshore area and improve public access to one of only two city saltwater parks. Other funding for this project will be used to explore using dredge spoils from the Snohomish River to nourish the beach at four locations adjacent to stream deltas along the 4.5 mile drift cell which includes the City of Everett’s Howarth Park site.
Phase: Restoration
Sponsor:  Snohomish County
Contact:  Dave (425) 388-3464

Matterand Estuary Restoration Design ($82,516)
Grant funds will be used to conduct a feasibility/design assessment for restoring estuary habitat on an 83 acre parcel of floodplain ground that lies along the old Stillaguamish Mainstem, across from Leque Island and the City of Stanwood.  This site is contained within the estuary priority restoration area listed in the 2005 Stillaguamish Chinook Recovery Plan and is important for meeting recovery plan targets.
Phase: Design
Sponsor:  Stillaguamish Tribe   
Contact: Jason Griffith (360) 631-0868

WHATCOM COUNTY
Smuggler’s Slough Fish Passage Improvement ($365,730)
Grant funds will be used to open up 1.72 miles of habitat for fish passage by replacing two culverts at Haxton Way and Lummi Shore Road and remove two field culverts considered to be passage barriers on Smuggler’s Slough. An inventory and measurement of beaver structures is also proposed to assist in the operation of the recently installed self-regulating tide-gate to allow more flow into the project area.
Phase: Restoration
Sponsor: Lummi Nation
Contact: Jill Komoto (360) 384-2340