Toronto and Region Conservation Authority

Humber River Tributary Realignment and Restoration

Reversing the impact of historical agricultural land use with natural channel design

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About

A historically straightened reach of a tributary of Humber River compromised aquatic habitat and posed a risk to adjacent land development.

Toronto and Region Conservation Authority retained Palmer to develop a natural channel design for the realignment and restoration of a 200 m-long section of creek. Our role was to characterize existing channel morphology, evaluate erosion risks, and develop a new meandering planform, pool-riffle profile and varied cross-sectional geometry for the creek. Large woody debris was incorporated for habitat enhancement. Channel realignment prevented further erosion of the valley wall and improved fish habitat functions.

Leadership
  • Robin McKillop Principal, Geomorphologist
Client
Toronto and Region Conservation Authority
Services
  • Fluvial Geomorphology
  • Aquatic Ecology
Date
November 2017 — July 2018

What We're Doing

Re-establishment of a natural meandering channel away from an eroding valley wall restored and enhanced aquatic habitat and reduced risk to adjacent development.

Fluvial Geomorphology

Watershed-, reach- or site-scale analysis of river behaviour for baseline characterization of sediment transport patterns, erosion risk assessment and mitigation (e.g. bioengineering) for infrastructure and property protection, and 'natural channel design' for creek realignments and habitat restoration. Past trends are used to manage risk to infrastructure and land development, as well as aquatic and riparian ecology

Aquatic Ecology

Industry-leading fisheries science consulting and aquatic services assisting in minimizing project effects on fish and complying with environmental legislation. Assessment of fish population dynamics, food web interactions, fish health and aquatic habitats amid human-induced impacts supporting monitoring, permitting and habitat compensation planning.