The City of Bellingham is constructing an estuary in the lower part of Little Squalicum Park where Little Squalicum Creek meets Bellingham Bay. An open house about this and an adjacent project is scheduled for May 25, with project construction set to begin in June.
The Little Squalicum Estuary project will improve water quality, bypass a fish passage barrier, and replace essential coastal habitat in an area where historical wetlands have been lost to development. The added habitat will benefit native species, including Endangered Species Act-listed Puget Sound Chinook and priority species such as steelhead, coho, and southern resident killer whales.
Construction of this project begins in June 2022. The lower park, including the lower off-leash dog area and beach, at Little Squalicum Park will be inaccessible during construction through December 2022. Installation of native plants at the site will continue through March 2023. All trails and off-leash dog areas outside of the project area will remain accessible during construction.
In the same vicinity of this project will be the Port of Bellingham’s Little Squalicum Habitat Beach Project, which will begin construction in mid-summer 2022 pending final permitting and a successful bid process. During construction, Little Squalicum Beach Park – located southeast of the Little Squalicum Estuary Project and near Mt. Baker Products – will be closed to public access. This project will improve fish habitat by removing industrial fill from historic tidelands.
The community is invited to an open house on Wednesday, May 25 to learn more about the City’s Little Squalicum Estuary project and the Port’s Little Squalicum Habitat Beach Project. Participants can stop by any time between 6 to 8 p.m. to talk to project staff and ask questions. The event will take place at Bellingham Technical College. Spanish interpretation will be provided. More details about the event are available at cob.org/lse-open-house.
More information about the City’s Little Squalicum Estuary project can be found at cob.org/lse-project. For more information about the Port’s Little Squalicum Habitat Beach Project, visit the Port’s Capital Project Highlights Map and view the first project under the “Public Priorities” tab.
The Little Squalicum Estuary Project is made possible with funds from the City of Bellingham, Greenways Levy Fund, Washington Department of Ecology Centennial Clean Water Program, Washington Department of Ecology One-Time Grant Program, Washington State Aquatic Lands Enhancement Account Grant Program, Washington State Estuary and Salmon Restoration Program, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service National Coastal Wetland Conservation Grant Program. The Little Squalicum Habitat Beach Project is funded by a Washington Department of Ecology grant.
Para información en español, visite cob.org/lse-project.