Crews working for the state Department of Transportation have begun restoring 2.4 acres of wetland at Bellevue’s Kelsey Creek Park. The improvements are intended to balance environmental impacts from the construction of additional traffic lanes on nearby Interstate 405.
The site, where Richards Road meets Lake Hills Connector, now contains old construction debris, including concrete and asphalt, surrounded by native wetland habitat. Crews will remove approximately 17,000 cubic yards of fill – about 850 truck loads – from the area, then plant native vegetation and install logs and woody debris.
The work is part of an “environmental mitigation” effort by the state DOT. In order to address, or "mitigate" adverse environmental impacts from the I-405 construction, WSDOT is allowed to restore wildlife habitat and improve water quality at Kelsey Creek.
In addition to restoring the Kelsey Creek wetland, the I-405 South Bellevue Widening Project includes other environmental improvements:
- Building ecology embankments to improve water quality. Ecology embankments are environmentally-engineered ditches along the freeway designed to remove pollutants from highway runoff.
- Building a tank and ponds for flood control near Coal Creek Parkway. A large storm water detention tank and five detention ponds will slow the release of runoff and reduce pollution by allowing sediment to settle before it’s released.
- Planting trees and shrubs and applying aesthetic treatments. Crews will plant trees and shrubs along the corridor, build walls and bridges with architectural treatments, and construct terraced walls with planter boxes near the I-405/Southeast Eighth Street interchange.
The I-405 South Bellevue Widening Project widens four miles of I-405 in Bellevue, between 112th Avenue Southeast and Southeast Eighth Street. Construction began in July and will finish at the end of 2009.
For more information on the project or to subscribe to e-mail updates, visit the WSDOT project website.
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