The Grove on Kickapoo Creek, a new 460+ acre development on the southeast side of Bloomington, Ill., features more than 88 acres of passive parklands, a 20-acre active park, four miles of trails, a 15-acre site for an elementary school currently under construction, and a proposed daycare.
The centerpiece is the restoration of the existing stream into an 88-acre corridor serving multiple purposes: nature preserve, education, recreation, aesthetic enhancement, habitat restoration and detention.
Owner: City of Bloomington, Ill.
General Contractor: Stark Excavating, Bloomington, Ill.
Design Firm: Farnsworth Group Inc., Normal, Ill.
The $1.77-million restoration of the channel and floodplain, coupled with the riparian wetlands and pedestrian bridge, provide the necessary stormwater detention volume and habitat restoration while satisfying hydraulic design criteria critical to allowing upstream silt loads to pass through the system.
Using wetland treatment cells at the storm sewer outlets of the neighboring subdivision, reconnecting the creek to its floodplain and planting almost 40 acres of previous cropland in native prairie species will provide significant water quality improvements to the channel.
The project used Newbury weirs constructed of large riprap stone and keyed into the channel’s bed and banks at positions determined by hydraulic modeling.
The weirs provide grade control, rock habitat, streambank erosion protection, stream aeration, and are an aesthetic element for the restored channel.
The arched precast-concrete pedestrian bridge will help protect the stream by restricting flood flows, having its greatest impact at the highest flows.