Historical Loss and Current Rehabilitation of Shoreline Habitat along an Urban-Industrial River—Detroit River, Michigan, USA
- stabilize shorelines for protection from flooding and erosion;
- achieve greater human safety; and
- accommodate commercial navigation or industry .
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Geographical Information System (GIS) Methods
2.2. Soft Shoreline Survey Methods
- incidental habitat (i.e., adding habitat components to a structure like a breakwater), or
- changing from steel sheet piling or concrete breakwater to some limestone rip-rap that provided some limited habitat features.
3. Historical Background
4. Results and Discussion
- less than 60% soft shoreline—poor quality;
- 60–70% soft shoreline—fair quality;
- 70–80% soft shoreline—good quality; and
- greater than 80% soft shoreline—very good quality.
5. Concluding Remarks and Outlook
- start with demonstration projects and attract many partners to leverage resources;
- treat habitat modification projects as experiments that promote learning, where hypotheses are developed and tested using scientific rigor;
- involve citizen scientists, volunteers, university students, and/or researchers in monitoring, and obtain commitments for post-project monitoring of effectiveness up front in project planning;
- measure benefits and communicate successes; and
- promote education and outreach, including public events that showcase results and communicate benefits .
Conflicts of Interest
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|Natural Resource Attribute||Description|
|Biodiversity and International Designations|
|Location||Figure 3 Locator||Project Type||Project Goals||Project Description and Cost||Timeframe||Partners||Monitoring|
|BASF Waterfront Park, Wyandotte, Michigan||1 ●||Rip-rap||Transform a former shipbuilding and chemical manufacturing site (40 ha) along the Detroit River into a public recreation area (called BASF Waterfront Park) and a nine-hole golf course||As part of a $9.1 million park redevelopment and brownfield cleanup, 390 m of shoreline were stabilized and enhanced using limestone rip-rap||Consent Decree signed in 1985; golf course and park opened in 1995||City of Wyandotte, BASF Corp., Michigan Department of Environmental Quality||None|
|BASF Park, Wyandotte, Michigan||2 ●||Small rip-rap||Demonstrate use of Elastocoast (Elastomeric revetment that stabilizes shorelines and enhances habitat by increasing interstitial spaces) along the Detroit River shoreline of BASF Park||Stabilized nine meters of Detroit River shoreline to a depth of 37 cm with five-cm crushed limestone bound together with the Elastocoast product; $6000||2008||BASF Corporation, City of Wyandotte||Qualitative|
|BASF Riverview, Trenton Channel, Riverview, Michigan||3 ●||Incidental habitat||Remediate a contaminated site, add incidental habitat to steel sheet piling walls, and create one acre of fish spawning habitat||Following remediation of a brownfield site, incidental habitat was added to 366 m of steel sheet piling, and 0.4-ha of walleye, smallmouth and largemouth bass, and sturgeon spawning habitat was created; $100,000||2007–2008||BASF Corporation, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality||None|
|Detroit RiverWalk-Stroh River Place, Detroit, Michigan||4 ●||Incidental habitat||Build a section of the Detroit RiverWalk in front of Stroh River Place and enhance riparian habitat||Built a 305-m section of the Detroit RiverWalk using a cantilever design with habitat features beneath the cantilevered RiverWalk; $1 million||2006–2007||Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, Stroh Companies, Inc., Omni Hotel, and Tallon Industries||None|
|Detroit RiverWalk-West of Milliken State Park, Detroit, Michigan||5 ●||Rip-rap||Stabilize the shoreline along the Detroit RiverWalk and enhance aquatic habitat||Stabilized 152 m of shoreline with varying sizes of rock armor stone and enhanced aquatic habitat; $100,000||2003–2004||Detroit Riverfront Conservancy and General Motors Corporation||None|
|Detroit-Wayne County Port Authority, Detroit, Michigan||6 ●||Incidental habitat||Enhance fish spawning habitat in conjunction with construction of a 61-m wharf to support Port Authority operations||Enhanced fish spawning habitat through placement of 512 m3 of limestone rip-rap covering 832 m2 (64 m by 13 m) at the base of the wharf||2007||Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority, Detroit Riverfront Conservancy||None|
|DTE’s Rouge Power Plant, River Rouge, Michigan||7 ●||Soft shoreline||Remove broken concrete and asphalt, stabilize shoreline, and enhance habitat||Reconstructed 61 m of natural shoreline using soft engineering techniques and reestablished a natural riparian buffer made up of four Michigan native plant communities; $30,000||2005||DTE Energy, Nativescape, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of Environmental Quality, and six other partners||Qualitative|
|Elizabeth Park—Phase 2, South River Walk, Trenton, Michigan||8 ●||Soft shoreline||Stabilize and enhance 183 m of shoreline, recreate river walk, and enhance underwater fish habitat||Removed a 1910 concrete breakwall from the north end of Elizabeth Park, stabilized the shoreline using soft engineering techniques, and created two oxbow islands for nursery habitat for fish; $925,000||2005||Clean Michigan Initiative and Wayne County Parks||Quantitative|
|Elizabeth Park—Phase 3, North River Walk, Trenton, Michigan||9 ●||Rip-rap||Stabilize 250 m of Detroit River shoreline, complete the River Walk, and enhance riparian habitat||Graded back the shoreline and stabilized it with Armor stone and landscape plantings, and completed River Walk; $400,000||2012||Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund and Wayne County Parks||None|
|Ellias Cove, Trenton, Michigan||10 ●||Soft shoreline||Remediate mercury, lead, zinc, and PCB contaminated sediment from Ellias Cove and restore the shoreline using soft engineering techniques||Removed 88,000 m3 of sediment and disposed contaminated sediment in special contaminant cell at Pointe Mouillee Confined Disposal Facility in western Lake Erie and restored 270 m of shoreline habitat, including nursery habitat for fish; $150,000 for habitat portion||2006||U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Great Lakes Basin Program for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control, and seven other partners||Qualitative|
|Gabriel Richard Park, Detroit, Michigan||11 ●||Rip-rap||Stabilize river shoreline, restore fish habitat, and provide aesthetically-pleasing environment||Stabilized and restored 300 m of shoreline with fish habitat components, including the addition of two fishing overlooks; $300,000||2006–2007||Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, Detroit Parks and Recreation, and JJR||None|
|Maheras Gentry Park, Detroit, Michigan||12 ●||Soft shoreline||Create an oxbow and restore fish and wetland habitat as mitigation for the construction of Conner Creek Combined Sewer Overflow Control Facility||Removed 38,300 m3 of soil to create an oxbow, restored 508 m of shoreline habitat, planted native aquatic plants to improve fish habitat, and created fish spawning and nursery areas; $2.3 million||2000–2004||Detroit Water and Sewerage Department and Detroit Parks and Recreation||Qualitative|
|Mt. Elliott Park, Detroit, Michigan||13 ●||Rip-rap||Restore shoreline using limestone of varying sizes and native plant materials in an effort to help restore fish and wildlife habitat||Restored 200 m of shoreline, including providing an interactive water feature and playscape for children that will teach the importance of water; $200,000 for shoreline habitat work||2012–2013||Detroit Riverfront Conservancy and Detroit Recreation Department||None|
|Refuge Gateway Shoreline along the Trenton Channel of the Detroit River, Trenton, Michigan||14 ●||Soft shoreline||Stabilize shoreline using soft engineering techniques and restore coastal wetland and upland buffer habitats||Stabilized 365 m of shoreline using soft shoreline engineering techniques and restored 4.2 ha of emergent marsh, 1.7 ha of submergent marsh, and 4.8 ha of upland buffer habitats; $746,000||2010||Wayne County, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and six other partners||Qualitative|
|Refuge Gateway, School Ship Dock and Fishing Pier, Trenton, Michigan||15 ●||Incidental habitat||Enhance fish spawning habitat in conjunction with construction of a 61-m fishing pier||Nearly 418 m2 of 15–25 cm diameter limestone was placed along a 69 m long × 4.6 m wide fishing pier at a depth of 3–4.6 m to provide spawning habitat and refuge for fish and other aquatic species. Benefiting will be speleophilic (cave spawners) and lithophilic (rock spawners) fish species such as the northern madtom (endangered in State of Michigan and Province of Ontario), lake sturgeon, rock bass, smallmouth bass, and walleye. $100,000||2015–2016||Wayne County, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Great Lakes Fishery Trust, Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund, CN Rail, DTE Energy, and others||None|
|Solutia Plant (now called Eastman Chemical), Trenton, Michigan||16 ●||Rip-rap||Stabilize shoreline and enhance habitat||Stabilized 300 m of dike walls on two existing ponds located on the Detroit River using a variety of limestone rip-rap to enhance shoreline habitat (in lieu of concrete breakwalls or steel sheet piling); $150,000||2000||Solutia Chemical Company||None|
|Street-End Parks, Trenton, Michigan||17, 18, 19 ●||Rip-rap and underwater fish habitat||Construct three street-end parks and enhance fish habitat to improve fishing opportunities||Created three pocket parks, stabilized 25 m of shoreline at each park (total of 75 m), and rehabilitated habitat in the Detroit River; $816,000||2001–2002||City of Trenton, Clean Michigan Initiative, Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund, and Michigan Coastal Zone Management Program||None|
|U.S. Steel Shoreline near 203-cm Rolling Mill, River Rouge, Michigan||20 ●||Rip-rap||Restore riparian shoreline habitat using soft shoreline engineering techniques and enhance adjacent upland habitats||Restored 335 m of riparian shoreline habitat (bank stabilization was achieved with large limestone boulders and over 200 live stakes; sand ramps were also created to allow turtles to exit the river and lay their eggs) and 1.9 ha of upland habitat (native wildflowers, shrubs, and trees, and several large snake hibernacula) adjacent to the shoreline; $670,000||2010–2013||Detroit River Remedial Action Plan, Friends of the Detroit River, U.S. Steel, and others||Qualitative|
|U. S. Steel Shoreline West of Belanger Park, River Rouge, Michigan||21 ●||Soft shoreline||Restore shoreline using soft shoreline engineering techniques and enhance fish and wildlife habitat||Restored 610 m of Detroit River shoreline; created wetlands that provide spawning and fingerling habitat, and created an upland buffer area to provide water quality protection; $211,000||2004–2005||U.S. Steel, Nativescape, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service||Qualitative|
|Delisting Project||Figure 3 Locator||Brief Description||Status|
|Detroit River Reefs||▲||Construct fish spawning reefs for native fishes at six locations||Two fish spawning reefs off Belle Isle, two off Fighting Island, and one off Grassy Island constructed in 2004–2016, totaling 4.05 ha; one additional 0.93-ha reef to be constructed in 2017|
|Detroit Upper Riverfront Parks Restoration||1, 2, 3 ●||Restore shoreline habitat at Mariner Park, Lakewood East Park, and A.B. Ford Park||In design phase|
|Belle Isle Hydrologic Analysis, Feasibility and Pre-Design||4 ●||Investigate the waterways of Belle Isle in order to effectively design the habitat restoration projects in the Belle Isle forested wetland and Lake Okonoka||Underway|
|Belle Isle Forested Wetland Restoration||5 ●||Restore approximately 81 ha of wet-mesic flatwoods complex and adjacent habitat||Underway|
|Lake Okonoka Restoration with River Connection and Shoreline Restoration||6 ●||Enhance habitat for birds, fish, amphibians, and reptiles||Underway|
|Milliken State Park Pocket Marsh with River Connection||9 ●||Create a naturalized area of nearshore, protected, shallow water habitat and shoreline with direct connection to the Detroit River||In design phase|
|Hennepin Marsh Restoration||10 ●||Protect and enhance the existing submergent wetlands and create additional emergent wetland||Not started|
|Stony Island Shoal Reconstruction||11 ●||Restore 610 m of shoals to protect the island from further degradation of existing wetlands, and provide an environment for the natural regeneration of additional wetland habitat over time||Started in 2016 and to be completed in 2017|
|Sugar Island Restoration||12 ●||Stabilize the island and restore fish and wildlife habitats||Not started|
|Celeron Island Restoration and Shoal Construction||13 ●||Prevent further degradation to the southern end of the island by constructing shoal system and concurrently enhance fish and wildlife habitat||In design phase|
|Blue Heron Lagoon Restoration||7 ●||Reconnect and naturalize the connection between Blue Heron Lagoon and the Detroit River, restoring fish access to over 16 ha of existing wetlands, shallow and deep-water habitat and over 3.5 km of canal habitat, including coastal wetlands specifically designed for fish rearing and nursery habitat||Completed in 2013|
|Belle Isle South Fishing Pier Restoration||8 ●||Increase fish populations by providing connectivity between fish spawning and nursery areas in the river by creating 1 ha of wetlands immediately downstream of an existing spawning reef and creating deep and shallow water habitats in the flat bottomland of the pier||Completed in 2013|
|U. S. Steel Shoreline Restoration||14 ●||Restored 335 m of riparian shoreline habitat and 1.9 ha of upland habitat adjacent to the shoreline||Completed in 2013|
|Shoreline Restoration at Wayne County’s Refuge Gateway||15 ●||Stabilized 365 m of shoreline using soft shoreline engineering techniques and restored 4.2 ha of emergent marsh, 1.7 ha of submergent marsh, and 4.8 ha of upland buffer habitats||Completed in 2010|
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Hartig, J.H.; Bennion, D. Historical Loss and Current Rehabilitation of Shoreline Habitat along an Urban-Industrial River—Detroit River, Michigan, USA. Sustainability 2017, 9, 828. https://doi.org/10.3390/su9050828
Hartig JH, Bennion D. Historical Loss and Current Rehabilitation of Shoreline Habitat along an Urban-Industrial River—Detroit River, Michigan, USA. Sustainability. 2017; 9(5):828. https://doi.org/10.3390/su9050828Chicago/Turabian Style
Hartig, John H., and David Bennion. 2017. "Historical Loss and Current Rehabilitation of Shoreline Habitat along an Urban-Industrial River—Detroit River, Michigan, USA" Sustainability 9, no. 5: 828. https://doi.org/10.3390/su9050828