Woods Creek Restoration
Firm:HR Green, Inc.
Other Consultants:Applied Ecological Services, Central Tree, LLC
Owner:Village of Lake in the Hills
Description:Woods Creek is located in the Village of Lake in the Hills, McHenry County, Illinois, which has a population of approximately 29,000 residents and occupies 10.5 square miles. The Woods Creek Restoration Project is located on property owned by the Village of Lake in the Hills, adjacent to Ken Carpenter Park. The project area is adjacent to a paved trail system and bounded on the north and south by residential subdivisions.
The Woods Creek Watershed-Based Plan 0,NCWBP) completed in 2013 identified this project location as a critical area for improvements and recommended it as one of the highest-ranking implementation projects in the WCWBP for streambank and channel restoration and riparian area restoration and maintenance.
The project received funding through the United States Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Section 319 grant program administered by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA), as well as a grant from the local Soil and Water Conservation District.
The Village worked with HR Green, Inc. (HR Green) to design and stabilize approximately 1,817 centerline feet of Woods Creek and improve 27 acres of adjacent wetlands with native vegetation. HR Green incorporated wetland and riparian area restoration, streambank and shoreline protection, and stream channel restoration best management practices (BMPs). The installed BMPs provide much needed relief from the bank erosion and nutrient transport that was occurring in the Woods Creek Watershed.
The project required permitting through the United States Army Corps of Engineers, Illinois Department of Natural Resources - Office of Water Resources as well as other associated agencies. Construction was completed smoothly, and the project is currently in the Monitoring and Maintenance period. Applied Ecological Services, Inc. (AES) completed the construction of the Best Management Practices (BMPs) recommended in the Woods Creek Watershed Based Plan 0,NCWBP).
Woods Creek had been experiencing severe erosion. The erosion caused silt and sediment build-up which decreased the channel depth. Woods Creek Lake, which was downstream of the completed improvements, had to be periodically dredged due to silt and sediment build-up flowing from Woods Creek. Dredging typically costs $300,000 each time it is done. This project stabilized Woods Creek, improved adjacent wetlands to their natural state, reduced amount of silt and sediment being transported into the lake and therefore reducing the frequency of dredging required and improving overall water quality for the region.
Village of Lake in the Hills