Phenix City, Alabama
Print Case Study
Redfish Marine of Santa Rosa Beach FL for
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
May 01, 2010
After an evaluation by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Uchee Creek was designated as critical habitat for several mussel species such as the shiny-rayed pocketbook and oval pigtoe. Other species of concern include the rare southern elktoe mussel as well as 10 species of fish including the shoal bass and the extremely rare Halloween darter. In order to restore the habitat for these species, a deteriorating earthen / concrete crossing was deemed an obstruction and needed to be replaced with a structure having a natural bottom.
“Once the area was designated as critical habitat, the area became a high funding priority” added Chris Metcalf, Private Lands Coordinator with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “The original structure’s small openings did not provide adequate passage for aquatic life and needed to be replaced with a structure that could span from bank to bank” In addition, the new structure had to meet the challenges of the site which included site remoteness, extremely difficult access and numerous heavy rain flooding events. To meet these site challenges, a 120’ x 10’ Contech vehicular truss bridge was chosen to replace the deteriorating structure. The design of the new structure also corrected flooding issues of the old structure by placing the chord well above the 100 year flood elevation. The installation of the new truss bridge - chosen for its cost efficiency, quality and style - restored normal flows and habitat conditions in this section of the stream channel. Overall, this project opened up 25 miles of aquatic organism passage and created 400 linear feet of habitat for shoal bass.
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