The long-awaited Boise Creek reroute project is about to begin.
After three years of planning, the Enumclaw City Council awarded a bid for the $3 million project during its May 22 meeting; taking on the task will be Active Construction, based out of Tacoma.
As it runs through the Enumclaw Golf Course, Boise Creek floods annually, making some holes unplayable for weeks at a time, not to mention the damage it causes to the fairway and driving paths.
The creek is also unhealthy for migrating fish; its current path allows the sun to warm the water, which can be fatal to salmon and trout.
Boise Creek currently runs through the golf course on its west side, but Active Construction will re-channel about 0.6 miles of the creek to the east side of the grounds so it skirts along the forest edge. Moving the creek to the opposite side of the course will shade the river, and additional work on the creek will diversify the habitat, providing better areas for fish to rest, eat, or hide.
Chappel Creek, an offshoot of Boise Creek, will also be rerouted.
Shovels are expected to be in the ground this June.
While this project has been a long time coming for Enumclaw, it was even longer for the Puyallup Tribe, which started studying how to improve the Boise Creek fish habitat in 2008. The final report recommended returning the creek to its historic channel.