Upper Nisqually River Levee Retrofit Environmental Assessment and FONSI

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The National Park Service (NPS) has completed its environmental review and issued its decision to permit Pierce County Public Works to retrofit the upper Nisqually River levee in Mount Rainier National Park with deflectors.

The decision, detailed in the Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the Upper Nisqually River Retrofit Environmental Assessment (EA), authorizes Pierce County to move forward with plans to construct deflectors within the park once all permits are secured. The county has a right-of-way that permits the construction, operation and maintenance of the upper Nisqually River revetment, also referred to as the levee, within the park. The purpose of the deflector project is to reduce erosion and reoccurring levee damage by reducing adjacent water velocity and shifting the main channel away from the levee and toward the center of the floodplain. The county proposes to add large wood to at least half of the deflectors, which would increase roughness and add habitat complexity to the existing levee face. The project is expected to reduce long-term maintenance costs of the nearly one-mile long flood control levee. About one half of the levee is located within the park. The work will occur as early as the summer of 2019.

The FONSI, its appendices, and the EA can be found on this website by selecting Document List from the left navigation bar.

The National Park Service appreciates the public taking time to share their comments, ideas and concerns, and contributing to the Mount Rainier National Park planning process. If you have questions about the project contact Kevin Skerl or Karen Thompson at 360-569-6510.

Contact Information

Karen Thompson, Environmental Coordinator
Kevin Skerl, Chief, Natural and Cultural Resources