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Summary of Services

Skagit Conservation District (SCD) offers civil and environmental engineering services for soil, water and habitat conservation projects in Skagit County.  We work with private landowners, non-government organizations, drainage districts, and tribal and local government agencies to provide assistance with project planning, feasibility studies, engineering design, permitting and construction management on projects that help conserve natural resources.  In some situations, we also can assist in obtaining grant funding for project construction.

SCD, like all Washington conservation districts, is a political subdivision of Washington State.  Our engineering program is funded through grants from state agencies and project-specific funding sources.  We also work under inter-local agreements with local government agencies.  SCD’s engineering program works in coordination with and shares resources with our counterpart conservation districts in Island, San Juan and Skagit counties.

SCD’s engineering services program specializes in designing and permitting wetland and salmon habitat restoration and enhancement projects. Our recent projects have included:

  • stream channel design

  • removing culverts and small dams to improve fish passage

  • removing shoreline armoring and restoring natural beaches

  • modification of tide gates to allow tidal flow and fish passage

  • bioengineered stormwater management facilities

  • bioengineered bank and shoreline stabilization

For these projects, we typically carry out the following in-house engineering tasks:

  • basic hydrologic and hydraulic engineering evaluation

  • topographic surveying of channel profiles and cross sections

  • channel and shoreline geomorphologic field evaluations,

  • engineering design and cost estimating

  • preparation of permit applications

  • preparation of engineering drawings and construction specifications

skagit forks wetland reconnection project photo

Skagit Forks Wetland Reconnection

Completed engineering studies and design for a project that reconnects a large wetland complex on WDFW’s Skagit Wildlife Area to the SF Skagit River.  The project will provide critical rearing habitat for juvenile Chinook salmon. SCD collaborated with WDFW, Skagit Fisheries Enhancement Project and Skagit Dike District 3 on this $410,000 project to be completed summer 2021.

Statement of Qualifications
Natural Resource Conservation Engineering Services
Skagit Conservation District


Organization Identification

Skagit Conservation District
2021 E. College Way, Suite 203
Mount Vernon WA 98273
Tel. (360) 428 4313,

Fax. (360) 424-6172

Chuck Gerdes
Conservation Districts NW Region Engineer

Rains Fish Passage Barrier Removal photo

Rains Fish Passage Barrier Removal

Designed a project for a Skagit Fisheries Enhancement Group fish passage barrier removal program along Carey’s Creek near Hamilton, WA.  The project removed two undersized culverts on a private driveway and replaced them with a prefabricated steel bridge. Project was completed summer 2020 at cost of $102,000.

Crescent Harbor salt marsh restoration photo

Crescent Harbor Salt Marsh Restoration

Oak Harbor , 2007 - 2009
Worked with the Skagit River System Cooperative and Naval Air Station Whidbey Island to design and construct a suite of projects to restore tidal connectivity into approx. 200 acres of the Crescent Harbor salt marsh.  Projects included tidal channel construction, breaching of dikes, and rerouting utilities associated with the City of Oak Harbor’s wastewater treatment plant, which is located at the site

Orcas Recycling Services planning map

Orcas Recycling Services SWPPP

Orcas Island, 2014 ongoing
Worked with a start-up company that took over operation of Orcas Island’s solid waste transfer station and community recycling center to develop a stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP).  The ongoing work has included operationalizing WDOE stormwater monitoring and reporting requirements, consolidating stormwater outfalls and designing operational and structural “best management practices” for reducing pollutants in st
ormwater runoff from the site.


Howard Miller Steelhead Park Stream Channel Restoration

Skagit County, 2012
Worked with Skagit Fisheries Enhancement Group and Skagit County Parks Department to design and permit channel grading and large wood habitat structures for reactivating a relict side channel of the Skagit River and restoring the channel of a tributary creek at a large county park. Project supported the goal of restoring ESA-listed Chinook salmon rearing habitat.

Project cost $273,000.

Island County Annex building rain garden photo

Island County Gov. Annex Building Rain Garden Retrofit

Coupeville, 2008
Using WDOE grant funding, designed and constructed a rain garden to treat and infiltrate runoff from a parking lot at the Island County Government Annex Building.  The project location outside of the county permitting office building serves as a high-profile example of “low impact development” techniques for improving stormwater runoff quality.  Project cost $20,000.

Appel Farm Fish Passage photo

Whatcom County Flood Control Zone District Appel Farm Fish Passage and Floodgate Replacement

Designed a project that removed two deteriorated floodgates that blocked fish passage into a tributary of the Nooksack River with a new system that utilizes  “muted tidal regulated” flood gates that allow fish passage while improving overall drainage and flood protection.  Collaborated with Whatcom County Public Works and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Project was completed Fall 2017 at a cost of about $325,000.

Bertrand Creek Bank Stabilization photo

Bertrand Creek Bank Stabilization

Designed a project to stabilize an eroding creek bank on private property using bioengineered techniques that deflected high flow and improved fish habitat.  Project funded by USDA NRCS and managed by Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association.  The project design and construction was coordinated with WCPW’s West Badger Road Bridge replacement project during summer of 2019 at cost of about $50,000.

Horse Stall

Contact SCD to discuss engineering assistance with your natural resource conservation projects.


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