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GLIN==> Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority Announces Soft Engineering/Demonstration Training Project



Posted on behalf of John Hartig <jhartig@msodetroit.uscg.mil>

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Press Release
SOURCE: Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority
Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority Announces Soft Engineering/Demonstration
Training Project
The Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority (DWCPA) will announce a second-round
of funding for the "Lake Muskoday Shoreline Habitat Project," a soft
engineering training and demonstration project that targets numerous "high
risk" areas around the Lake Muskoday shoreline on Belle Isle in downtown
Detroit. The project consists of a two-day, hands-on course in basic soft
engineering design principles and techniques, showing participants how to
use native plants and geotextile fabrics to stabilize the shoreline, prevent
erosion, and consequently improve circulation, public access, and wildlife
and habitat.

"Soft engineering techniques can provide tremendous benefits over 'hard'
engineering," said John Kerr, DWCPA Project Manager, who assisted with the
organization of last year's two-day seminar attended by public officials,
private contractors, regulators, landscape architects, and city maintenance
workers.

On Thursday, July 18, 2002, a special reception will be hosted by DWCPA and
the Greater Detroit American Heritage River Initiative from 11:30 a.m.- 1:30
p.m. at the Detroit Yacht Club, to kick off the "Lake Muskoday Shoreline
Habitat Project," unveil the interpretive sign for the site and to announce
new funding for a second round of work. Funding partners in this year's
effort include the Great Lakes Commission (Soil Erosion and Sediment Control
Program), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Michigan Sea Grant/Michigan State
University Extension and the Michigan Garden Club.

In last year's training project, about 40 staff and volunteers stabilized
more than 300 feet of shoreline along Lake Muskoday, enhancing the
environment for waterfowl and fish while reducing soil erosion. The project
was exemplary of how collaborative and cooperative stakeholder involvement
can lead to successful results. Collaborative organizations included the
U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resource and Conservation Service,
the Greater Detroit American Heritage River Initiative, Cameron Contracting
of Wixom, Michigan and NTH Consultants, Ltd.

In 1998, the Detroit River was honored to become one of 14 American Heritage
Rivers in the United States. The American Heritage River Initiative is a
multi-stakeholder program whose goal is to support local communities in
their efforts to enhance economic development, promote environmental
stewardship, and celebrate history and culture. On July 19, 2001 the Detroit
River received a Canadian Heritage River designation, making it the first
international heritage river system in North America.



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