Soft Shoreline Engineering Case Studies
Goose Bay Park - Site #21
Project Goals and Objectives: Stabilize shoreline and enhance fish habitat
Project Description: Goose Bay is one of the last remaining sheltered embayment habitats along the Detroit River. Goose Bay Park (0.9 hectae-2.2 acres), located at the foot of Pillette Road and adjacent to Goose Bay, is owned by the City of Windsor. By restoring and enhancing fish and wildlife habitat, the project aided in delisting the impaired beneficial use "loss of fish and wildlife habitat" identified in the Detroit River Remedial Action Plan.
Restoration involved utilizing soft engineering techniques that first protected the shoreline using rip-rap and native plants. This work also included submerged enhancements to improve fish spawning and refuge habitat. Submerged enhancements included groynes, rock apron, and cobble stone. Using these methods, the embayment is protected from swift current regimes and wave actions.
Partners: Environment Canada's Great Lakes Cleanup Fund, City of Windsor and Essex Region Conservation Authority
Ecological Effectiveness: Before restoration, the shoreline was severely eroded with failing steel sheet walls and broken concrete rubble. Restoration activities were completed in 2000 and included reestablishment of a shallow beach area, construction of shore-connected groynes and an offshore shoal, and placement of rock at a steel sheet piling wall. Aquatic plants were introduced in the nearshore area in the spring following construction. Monitoring was performed in 2001 and found that the nearshore areas protected by the groynes were heavily sedimented with organic ooze (20-30 cm). No submerged aquatic plants were found in nearshore areas protected by the groynes. However, in the mid-embayment area, outside the groyne protected areas, wild celery became established and growth rates averaged four plants per 10 cm2 in random transects. Wild celery density increased to 10 plants per 10 cm2 in the offshore area. Benthic invertebrate populations were sparse. However, aquatic worms, dominant in the nearshore area pre-construction, were not found in 2001. There was relatively little change in the offshore area from pre-construction conditions, with midge larva the predominant order. Additional monitoring is required to fully document ecological effectiveness.
Restoration Contact: Essex Region Conservation Authority