Earthworks Continue at Kus-kus-sum
The recontouring process involves excavators and large trucks to be mobilized to the site. The excavators will regrade the site to the specific elevations that are required for the native plants and plant communities that are being established. Excess soil will be removed from the site and trucked to a designated location. Soil testing occurred both last year and this past month to understand the nature of the soils, delineate the site with a high level of precision and determine the best receiving sites for the soils. Once an area has been excavated down to grade, we can introduce topsoil, large wood for habitat complexing and integrate drainage channels.
Once an area has been recontoured to the specified elevations and amended with topsoil, it is ready to be planted. The native species we will be installing range from upland riparian trees and shrubs to tidal marsh species like sedges, rushes and reeds. Approximately 5,000 plants were planted last year and another 15,000 are planned for the remainder of the site. Planting will occur in the fall, and we will be looking for a large number of volunteers to assist with this activity.
The steel wall will remain in place until we are confident that the elevations are stable, and the entire site has been planted. Other factors such as salmon use of the river and tides will also be considered when scheduling the wall removal. We estimate that the earliest the wall will be removed will be during the winter of 2024.
To learn more about the work planned for this year and next we hosted a meeting via Zoom on June 19th. The recording has been added below.