Surprise at the end of the trailer! Engineering With Nature – An Ode to Water, Wood, and Stone, film 5 years in the making, follows the birth of what began as a neighborhood flood-control project initiated by Seattle Public Utilities. Working with an assembled team of federal, state, and local partners, which included research scientists and engineers, ultimately resulted in a project that far exceeded everyone’s expectations.
Today, adjacent neighborhoods no longer flood annually, and this section of the urban creek is once again functioning as an integral part of a historic natural green corridor. Pollutants associated with urban runoff are being removed through natural processes and the water is cooler, thanks to a cutting-edge engineered streambed. Further validation of the project came when, for the first time in 20 years, Chinook salmon returned to spawn in the project area, just a few feet from their human neighbors.
The bigger story however, may well be that this visionary project is showing what is possible when the best of informed science, artful design, innovative engineering, creative construction techniques, and a respect for the Wisdom of Mother Nature come together in search of better solutions to the environmental challenge of our time - creating resilience to coming Climate Change.