Dog River floodplain restoration

Client Name
Friends of the Winooski River
Vermont, USA
  • Water resources engineering

Our team combines current science and engineering with the art of application to create projects to restore or replicate natural river and floodplain form and processes. We integrate the disciplines of hydrology, hydraulics, fluvial geomorphology, flood mitigation, water quality, instream habitat, and aquatic biology to create natural, sustainable, and resilient projects. Our work hinges on the geomorphic-engineering approach to integrate river science and engineering to assess and design projects.

One of our niche areas is resolving conflicts between natural processes and the built environment such as public infrastructure and private property. We seek alternatives that allow as much of natural river form and process to take place in the most stable equilibrium state with the highest level of floodplain connection. We understand that natural and connected systems perform vital functions such as maintaining good water quality and habitat. We also know that naturally functioning systems provide cost-effective ecosystem services to humans such as reducing flooding.


The Dog River Floodplain Restoration in Northfield, Vermont created flood storage in a floodprone Village Centre to reduce flooding and a public park.


We performed an alternatives analysis using a hydraulic model to evaluate the removal of a berm and fill to naturalise floodplain function.


Following our design, we applied for and received regulatory permits, assisted with the bidding process, and provided construction oversight. The completed project included a restored floodplain and a new town park with walking trails, play areas, river access, and a small shelter. This project improved flood resiliency by reducing historic flooding in the adjacent residential neighbourhoods, storing sediment and debris, improving floodplain function, and reducing erosion risk of infrastructure, while also creating community amenities.