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Idlewood Creek Dam Removal and Stream Restoration

Designing natural stream to re-establish fish passage into Idlewood Creek

  • 400m

    Restoration Works

  • 4

    Barriers Removed

  • 4500

    Metres Square Habitat Banking Credits

  • Kitchener, Ontario

    Kitchener, Ontario

Bringing fish back to the Idlewood Creek headwaters—naturally.

Along Idlewood Creek in the City of Kitchener, two small dams and an old farm crossing were preventing fish from accessing the upper reaches of the creek from the Grand River. Identified as an important project to support the City’s vision for sustainable vibrant communities, replacing the barriers would be critical to the natural habitat.

Stantec’s stream engineers and landscape architects worked closely with the City of Kitchener, residents, and regulators to design three reaches of natural channel to replace the barriers. This project had its challenges—the Idlewood Creek valley in the project reach was steeper and narrower than usual for southern Ontario, and target fish species were small with limited jumping and swimming abilities. Our team studied stable creeks and valleys and used advanced two-dimensional modelling techniques to produce a resilient design providing fish passage and channel stability for low and high flow conditions.

Our design re-established fish passage from the Grand River to the upper reaches of Idlewood Creek and integrated the natural channel design into a new section of the Walter Bean Trail, allowing the community to enjoy the restored natural habitat for generations to come.

Meet Our Team

Heather Amirault, Surface Water Engineer

Rivers tell stories. I read them, and when needed, do a rewrite for a happy ending.

Jeff Muirhead, Water Resources Engineer

The real key to a successful project is working “between the silos” with diverse, open-minded, cross-discipline project teams.

Heather Amirault

Surface Water Engineer

Jeff Muirhead

Water Resources Engineer

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