St. Vrain Creek Restoration – Reach 3
Construction along Reach 3

St. Vrain Creek Restoration - Reach 3

Post-flood restoration work is underway along the St. Vrain Creek between US 36 and Airport Road, also referred to as Reach 3.

Flood Restoration

Reach 3 is located east of Lyons and west of Longmont. The approximate project boundaries are US-36 to the west, Ute Highway (SH-66) to the north, N. 75th St. to the east, and Hygiene Road to the south. The area was severely damaged by the September 2013 floods due to many streambank breaches and concentrated flow in areas of the floodplain.

Along 1.5 miles of creek the following work will be done by American Civil Constructors Mountain West Division:

  • Repair four of the nine stream breaches (1, 2, 6, and 7a, see map) to reduce the risk of future catastrophic failure
  • Remove the metal and concrete debris left behind by the flood
  • In select areas, restore, grade, and shape the channel to minimize future erosion
  • Restore riparian vegetation to areas stripped bare by the flood

Please note: while this project is in the area of the proposed gravel mining operation along the St. Vrain Creek, it is not a gravel mining project.


The goal of the project is to restore and improve the channel and surrounding floodplain to protect life and property and provide a safe, natural, resilient, functioning, and ecologically rich habitat utilizing natural system principles. The project will expedite recovery from the 2013 floods and make the area more resilient in future flood events.

Specific components of the project include:

  • Incorporating natural channel diversity and character
  • Re-establishing floodplain benches for lateral connectivity
  • Improving flow conveyance and sediment transport
  • Protecting public and private infrastructure
  • Repairing unstable erosion scars in high-risk areas
  • Revegetating denuded areas with native species

St. Vrain Creek Reach 3 Project Area Map

Please note this is an active construction site, and members of the public are not allowed to enter the site.


Funding for this project is from the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Emergency Watershed Protection program, the State of Colorado through the Colorado Water Conservation Board, and Boulder County.


Project Background

Boulder County Parks & Open Space began planning and design work on Reach 3 of Saint Vrain Creek in 2016. The planning phase, funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant for Disaster Relief (CDBG-DR) was a collaborative effort with stakeholders throughout the Saint Vrain Creek watershed.

Through a series of public meetings with neighbors, the City of Longmont, the Saint Vrain Creek Coalition, and other stakeholders, we developed a comprehensive plan and a 30% design.

We then sought and received preliminary approval for a grant from the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) Program from the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) as administered by the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB). Utilizing this funding source, the 80% design for Reach 3 was completed in June 2017.

Past Public Meetings

30% Design Presentation – December 14, 2016

The project team presented the final 30% design of the stream restoration. The team addressed concerns, provide responses, and make appropriate changes as necessary.

Preferred Alternative – August 10, 2016

The project team presented the preferred alternative and addressed concerns, provided responses, and is considering appropriate changes as necessary.

Presentation of Alternatives & Site Visit – July 12, 2016

The project team presented draft alternatives and conducted a site visit with the public. The meeting was attended by members of the public as well as members of the Saint Vrain Creek Coalition. On the following evening, a shortened version of the presentation was presented to the Saint Vrain Creek Coalition Advisory Committee.

Project Goals and Scoping – June 1, 2016

Parks & Open Space and it’s consultant, Engineering Analytics, provided a brief presentation on the project approach, including a general outline of the engineering and restoration design process and the project goals and objectives. The team led a discussion gathering public input and concerns that will inform the design of the restoration project.

Contact Us

Parks & Open Space

Obadiah Broughton