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February 5, 2024

National Finalist: Gold Award

Photo from ACEC Washington
The realigned channel and estuary addresses sea level rise and allows fish easier migration to Lund’s Gulch Creek.

Anchor QEA

Project: Meadowdale Beach Park and estuary
Client: Snohomish County Parks and Recreation

Meadowdale Beach Park and estuary restoration is a groundbreaking project along Puget Sound — the first stream mouth restoration project in the area, addressing the loss of barrier embayments along the Central Puget Sound’s eastern shore over the past century.

The project, spearheaded by Anchor QEA, involved removing a 20-foot rock-armored embankment, replacing a 6-foot box culvert with a five-span railroad bridge, restoring the estuary, and reconnecting Lund’s Gulch Creek with Puget Sound. The bridge was constructed in two adjacent sections to allow rail access during construction.

Key technical accomplishments include the use of diamond piers to support a timber-framed boardwalk over the wetland, a soldier pile retaining wall with lightweight foamed glass aggregate backfill, and the repurposing of the park area from passive recreation to a habitat focus.

These approaches addressed complex challenges such as landslide hazards, narrow access roads and live-track construction requirements. The project has garnered positive reception and community support, aligning with social, economic and sustainable development considerations.

“The project presented considerable complexities, expertly navigated by Anchor QEA LLC’s project management. Their efforts ensured that timelines were met, resources were allocated efficiently, all stakeholders were kept in the loop, and the successful delivery of this award-winning project — $1 million under budget,” said Tom Teigan, director of Snohomish County Conservation and Natural Resources.

“The positive attitude, problem-solving skills, and unwavering work ethic of the Anchor QEA project manager, coupled with their ability to inspire and motivate the project team, played a pivotal role in overcoming challenges during construction. This project would not have been possible without them,” Teigan said.

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