A large three-sided culvert will be installed under 160th Street NW to improve fish passage and fish habitat. The work will start early July and is expected to be complete in late October.
The Huge Creek culvert is being replaced to provide a clear fish passage for native trout and salmon. This project is part of a larger effort to improve fish passage in the Minter Creek basin. The current culvert will be demolished on site and hauled away. New guardrails will be added, and native plantings will be established.
Work hours will be 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday to Friday.
The two-lane road will be reduced to one lane with alternating traffic during work hours. Trucks, construction and heavy equipment will be coming and going from the project site. Drivers are asked to be aware of these construction vehicles and add extra travel time.
The culvert was initially proposed to be replaced in 2004 by the South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group; however, higher than expected bids delayed its start. Pierce County Surface Water Management worked to advance the project in 2014 and completed the design work. In 2016 it was awarded a salmon recovery grant from the Washington Recreation and Conservation Office to fund the construction. Marty Ereth, an environmental biologist on the project team, says, "Huge Creek contains native coho and chum salmon as well as ESA listed steelhead and coastal cutthroat trout. There is more than 10 miles of habitat upstream capable of supporting native salmonids. It’s exciting to see this project finally getting completed.”
Active Construction Inc. is the project contractor. The construction cost is approximately $950,000 and is funded by the Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO), Flood Control Zone District (FCZD), Kitsap County and Pierce County SWM Funds.
A project webpage is available at www.piercecountywa.gov/hugecreek.
Aaron Copado, Pierce County public information specialist