Construction to restore a fish and wildlife habitat for over 16 acres of a former golf course is underway with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hosting a groundbreaking ceremony for the project at Ballinger Park in Mountlake Terrace, Washington, May 30 at 2:00 p.m.
“Ecosystem restoration projects like this allows the Corps the opportunity to partner with our local community, to create and preserve critical habitats in rapidly developing urban areas,” said Jeff Dillon, USACE Seattle District program manager.
The project will restore wetlands, riparian corridors, and create more places for birds, fish, turtles, salamanders, and native mammals to live.
The $5.5 million project construction cost, of which $3.4 million comes from Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) funding that President Joseph R. Biden signed into law in November 2021, includes creating a wetted creek channel, removing invasive plants, and installing a diverse array of plants.
Additional project components include replacing a vehicle crossing and adding a pedestrian boardwalk to provide access to people, while limiting damage to plants and wetland soils. Minor enhancements to pond habitat are also planned.
The cost-share during construction for ecosystem restoration projects is 65 percent federal; 35 percent non-federal.
Seattle District Commander Colonel Alexander “Xander” L. Bullock will make remarks to celebrate this milestone.
Demolition began mid-May and heavy construction activity will run through spring 2024. Residents may see heavy equipment trucks driving along the north end of the park, and several construction trucks transporting native plants around the creek for planting in the area.
“When the project is completed, park visitors will be able to enjoy an environment full of bird song, plants that originally thrived in this area, and little wild spaces close to home,” said City of Mountlake Terrace Stormwater Manager Laura Reed.
For current project updates, click here.
For more information on USACE projects in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law work plan, click here.