Swan River Restoration Project Blog

Updates on construction and project milestones.

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Sep 26

Swan River Restoration Project - Construction Update for Week of September 26, 2016

Posted on September 26, 2016 at 4:49 PM by Jason Lederer

This week, Summit County’s design-build team of Ecological Resource Consultants/Tezak Heavy Equipment (ERC/Tezak) continues major earthwork operations on the Swan River Restoration project site. Most of the work this week will be focused on constructing the new crossing at the downstream (western) end of the project site and topsoil placement.

Recently, we receive the results of a fish survey conducted by Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) immediately downstream from the project site earlier this month - and the news is good! CPW’s results indicate an ecologically healthy and productive fishery. The survey reach covered 464 linear feet of stream. In that reach they captured a total of 229 brook trout and a whopping 152 mottled sculpin. There was a very high density of young-of-the-year brook trout and a wide size range of sculpin, indicating a wide age composition of their population. The numbers of sculping are surprisingly high. In fact, this is the highest-density sculpin population CPW has found in any water upstream of Dillon Reservoir. The reason why this is especially great news is that if the downstream turbidity of earlier this summer had affected the fish population, the two most vulnerable components of the fishery would be juvenile trout and sculpin, and they would have been conspicuously absent from the sample. Instead, CPW found the opposite - high densities of both. In the longer term, this fish survey data provides a great baseline from which to monitor in the future. Thank you very much to CPW for their continued work monitoring headwater streams in Summit County and partnership on the Swan River Restoration Project!

Last week, crews completed major excavation for the new crossing and installed the preliminary bridge foots (called express footers). This week, crews will be completing the bridge foundation and installing the new crossing pieces section by section. Several pieces arrived late in the day last Friday. Installation of the new Tiger Road crossing is anticipated to be fully complete by early October 2016. A temporary detour is now in place creating a new traffic pattern around this work zone. Please continue to exercise caution and courtesy while passing through the construction site.

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The site continues to be closed to public access while restoration activities are occurring. Open Space and Trails staff are harvesting timber from adjacent Open Space properties and installing buck and rail fence along the project site perimeter to further restrict unauthorized access. Please respect these temporary closures while the site is in a relatively fragile condition.

Work is scheduled to continue through October 2016, followed by a winter shut-down period, before recommencing in spring 2017. Additional information about Swan River Restoration Project is available at RestoreTheSwanRiver.com as well as on the Open Space and Trails Special Projects web page. If you have additional questions about the restoration project, you can contact Summit County Open Space and Trails Director Brian Lorch, or Open Space and Trails Resource Specialist Jason Lederer, or call 970.668.4060.