The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Philadelphia District and the Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) co-hosted an Engineering With Nature (EWN) workshop on June 7-8 in Philadelphia.
A multi-disciplinary team from around the country met to discuss the EWN program and highlight best practices and capture new project ideas.
The two-day workshop featured opening presentations on a number of topics, including coastal resiliency; marsh restoration; natural and nature-based features; habitat enhancement and regional sediment management, and interactive breakout sessions to identify opportunities for applying EWN concepts in participants’ respective areas of responsibility.
The 35 participants included planners, regulators, environmental resources professionals, engineers, project managers, two Philadelphia District team members from reservoir projects in Eastern Pennsylvania, EWN Leadership Team members and ERDC subject matter experts.
“Traditionally, most EWN projects have been in the navigation and coastal areas, but we are trying to involve other members of the District team and grow the program,” said Monica Chasten, a Project Manager from the Philadelphia District’s Operations Division.
The Philadelphia District has demonstrated the potential to engineer with nature on multiple projects.
After Hurricane Sandy, the District team faced the task of clearing critical shoals from the New Jersey Intracoastal Waterway.
The team partnered with ERDC, the state of New Jersey, and non-profit organizations to beneficially use the dredge material to restore marsh and build coastal resilience.