• Stanley Park Stormwater Treatment Wetland

  • Vancouver, BC

Winner of the Consulting Engineers of BC's Award of Excellence

Stanley Park is one of the world's premier urban parks with a major commuter route, the Stanley Park Causeway, cutting through its middle. Until recently, contaminated runoff from the causeway flowed uncontrolled to adjacent forest and streams where pollutants were dispersed and impossible to clean up.

Wetland Solution

To eliminate this diffuse contamination of the environment, Kerr Wood Leidal recommended channelling causeway runoff to a stormwater treatment wetland. Constructed in Lost Lagoon, the wetland minimizes disturbance to the park's natural environment.

Design Challenges

Given its prominent location at the park's entrance, the wetland had to blend convincingly with its natural setting. Aside from aesthetics, the major technical challenge was building the wetland on Lost Lagoon's soft, silty, and weak bottom sediments. Building directly onto these soils was impossible because the construction equipment, let alone the structure itself, would sink. Using ingenuity and meticulous analysis, the KWL design team devised a complex soil structure that 'floated' on the sediments and gradually settled during construction.

Sustainable Environmental Protection

The Stanley Park Stormwater Treatment Wetland is an innovative solution that represents a leap forward in environmental protection. Using natural filtration and treatment processes, the wetland will aid in improving water quality in the entire ecosystem that formerly received uncontrolled runoff. Unlike more conventional solutions that scar the landscape with unsightly structures, the wetland blends with and enhances the environment through the creation of new and sustainable wildlife habitat matching the original natural state of Lost Lagoon.