Bridge to replace culverts between Indian, Marrowstone islands

Posted 9/23/14

A bridge would be installed to replace road fill and twin culverts on the highway connecting Indian Island and Marrowstone Island, part of a $24.8 million boost to salmon recovery projects in Puget …

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Bridge to replace culverts between Indian, Marrowstone islands

Posted

A bridge would be installed to replace road fill and twin culverts on the highway connecting Indian Island and Marrowstone Island, part of a $24.8 million boost to salmon recovery projects in Puget Sound.

The "restoring Kilisut Harbor" project is one of four Salmon Recovery Board and Puget Sound Partnership projects set in Jefferson County, according to a press release from the Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office.

Four projects in Jefferson County are earmarked to receive a total of $4,212,388. The largest single project, $3,114,230, would replace road fill and twin culverts from under State Route 116 with a bridge that would allow fish to pass through from Kilisut Harbor (separating Marrowstone and Indian islands) and Oak Bay.

The North Olympic Salmon Coalition is to oversee the project, and contribute $427,475 toward this project from an Estuary and Salmon Restoration Program grant. The work is expected to benefit Hood Canal summer chum, Puget Sound steelhead and Chinook salmon, all listed as threatened with extinction under the federal Endangered Species Act.

"We are in the initial design phase of the project, with a construction schedule unknown at this time," Miranda Berger, NOSC development manager, told the Leader Sept. 22.

The Jefferson Land Trust is receiving a grant of $161,160 to buy and restore 14 acres that include a quarter mile of riverbank along both sides of the Big Quilcene River near Quilcene. The project increases the amount of protected land along the river; the Land Trust is contributing $28,440 in conservation futures.

A $746,000 grant has been awarded to the Jefferson Land Trust to buy about 215 acres along the south side of the Duckabush River, south of Brinnon along Hood Canal. The purchase is to help conserve ecological integrity and biological diversity of the Duckabush watershed. The purchase includes 1.3 miles of river waterfront. The Duckabush has been recognized as a high priority conservation watershed, and this acquisition would protect the bulk of the remaining private land in the streamside area, contributing to a 2.6-mile protected corridor from the Olympic Canal Tracts at the river's mouth to the Olympic National Forest boundary. The project builds on additional Jefferson Land Trust holdings, and additional working private timberlands would be protected with an easement held by the U.S. Navy through a partnership between the Trust for Public Lands, NBGC LLC, and the Navy. The Land Trust would contribute $225,500 in donations of cash and land.

Also in south county, a $190,998 grant to the Hood Canal Salmon Enhancement Group would remove a barge from the Dosewallips River estuary. The grant would be used to buy 1.5 acres, known as the Barnhouse property, to restore the shoreline and estuaries. The salmon enhancement group would remove a 200-foot-long creosote barge and fill. The land is at the mouth of Walker Creek, which is part of the greater Dosewallips Estuary complex, which provides rearing habitat for Hood Canal summer chum and Puget Sound Chinook, as well as fall chum, pink and coho salmon. The Hood Canal Enhancement Group would contribute $37,095 from a state grant, and donated labor.

Details of the grant are available online at

rco.wa.gov/documents/salmon/135-PSAR-GrantDescriptions.pdf.

The two agencies awarded 28 grants in 10 counties surrounding the state's largest estuary, where wild Chinook salmon are now one-third as abundant as they were a century ago. The grants focus on improving salmon habitat and conserving pristine shorelines and riverbanks.

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