The state Department of Fish and Wildlife will host a public meeting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at the Brinnon School to discuss and receive feedback on the proposed restoration of the Duckabush River estuary. (Department of Fish and Wildlife)

The state Department of Fish and Wildlife will host a public meeting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at the Brinnon School to discuss and receive feedback on the proposed restoration of the Duckabush River estuary. (Department of Fish and Wildlife)

Public meeting set to discuss Duckabush River estuary restoration

Fish and Wildlife officials to be in Brinnon on Saturday

BRINNON — The state Department of Fish and Wildlife will host a public meeting this week to gather input on a potential 38-acre restoration project in the Duckabush River estuary.

State officials will be at Brinnon School, 46 Schoolhouse Road, at 9:30 a.m. Saturday. They will be looking for public guidance on what to evaluate as they prepare a supplemental impact statement through July 26.

The public can provide input online, by mail or in person. Comments should be succinct and focus on impacts that could affect the environment.

“This estuary restoration project has the potential to greatly improve conditions for multiple species of salmon, including endangered Hood Canal summer chum,” Mendy Harlow, the executive director of the Hood Canal Salmon Enhancement Group, stated in a press release.

“We look forward to continuing our long-term efforts working with landowners in the Duckabush area to communicate the importance of this project to the Hood Canal ecosystem.”

The project, estimated to cost $90.5 million, would reconnect the Duckabush River to neighboring floodplains and wetlands by modifying local roads and elevating U.S. Highway 101 onto a bridge that spans the area where freshwater from the Duckabush River meets saltwater of Hood Canal.

Congress is expected to appropriate funds for 65 percent of the project cost through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the state Legislature will fund Fish and Wildlife at 35 percent of the project costs through the capital budget, said Seth Ballhorn, a nearshore communications manager for Fish and Wildlife.

The river estuary is impacted by fill, dikes and road infrastructure, including Highway 101, which blocks water channels and limits habitat.

“Healthy estuary and wetland habitats are rare in Puget Sound due to extensive development over the last century,” said Theresa Mitchell, an environmental planner for Fish and Wildlife. “It’s exciting to realize there is this opportunity to restore important habitat in the Duckabush. This project has the potential to provide long-lasting benefits to fish, wildlife and people.”

The Puget Sound Nearshore Estuary Restoration Project selected the Duckabush River estuary as one of three from more than 500 statewide proposals. The other two selections involve the Nooksack River delta and the North Fork Skagit River delta.

More information, including an online comment form, can be found at the Fish and Wildlife website, tinyurl.com/PDN-Duckabush.

________

Jefferson County Managing Editor Brian McLean can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 6, or at [email protected].

More in News

COVID-19 vaccine clinics on Peninsula to resume Tuesday

State announces plan to provide 45,000 shots daily

Alan and Karen Selig were among the gleaners volunteering at Joyce's Blueberry Haven last summer. (Photo courtesy of Sharah Truett/WSU Clallam County Extension)
Summer tastes are still alive

Volunteer gleaners share with schools, friends and family

Clallam County Heritage Board accepting applications for grants

The Clallam County Heritage Advisory Board is accepting applications for historic preservation… Continue reading

A piece of driftwood sits on the beach on Friday at the edge of the western portion of Port Angeles Harbor. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)
Port of Port Angeles nearing deal for harbor cleanup

Potential liable parties also include city of Port Angeles

More than 1,300 in Clallam County receive shot for COVID-19

Jefferson to begin vaccinations this week

Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News
Bill Chastain of Port Angeles receives a dose of COVID-19 vaccine from Shaina Gonzales of the North Olympc Healthcare Network during Saturday's vaccination clinic at Port Angeles High School.
Appointment-only system used in Port Angeles

An appointment-only system of scheduling allowed Port Angeles to… Continue reading

Sequim group forms against present council

Petition urges reinstatement of city manager

Students to get more in-person learning

Schedules vary among districts

Most Read