SR-9 Tawes Creek & Two Tributaries to Tawes Creek Fish Passage

Project Summary

IMCO removed three fish barriers under State Route 9 in the Van Zandt community in Whatcom County. The small round culverts previously in Tawes Creeks, and two of its tributaries, had too steep of a slope, too much distance between the culvert and the water for fish to jump through, and the water was too swift for fish to easily swim through.

IMCO crews removed and replaced the Tawes Creek culvert with a 20-foot bridge. The previous culverts on the two tributaries were replaced with larger, 12-foot wide, box culverts. This fish passage improvement work opened up more than 11,000 feet of additional habitat for steelhead, chum, Coho, sockeye salmon, and resident and Searun Cutthroat trout.

Upon completion, the bridge and new culverts helped restore the creek bed to a natural state and improved fish passage in the area.



Van Zandt, WA


Washington State Department of Transportation

Contract Amount

$5.5 Million


July 2019 - present

Anticipated Completion

October 2019

Project Highlights

Working with WSDOT on a sensitive project to improve fish habitat.