Completed Nooksack River Plans & Studies

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The lower Nooksack River starts at the confluence of the three upper forks near Deming and flows downstream to Bellingham Bay. The lower river experiences the most severe damages during flood events and has been the focus for several comprehensive planning efforts. Completed plans are listed below. Note - These documents may take a long time to load due to their file size.

Nooksack River System-Wide Improvement Framework (SWIF)

This recently completed plan provides a systematic approach for resolving deficiencies identified during recent levee inspections so that the levees remain eligible for repair through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) PL 84-99 Rehabilitation Program.

Nooksack Watershed Vision and Implementation Strategies


This draft vision was developed over a three-month period in response to a request from Floodplains by Design, a collaborative effort to promote and fund projects which integrate flood hazard reduction with salmon recovery and community and agricultural viability.  The SWIF Interagency Coordination Team was utilized to guide the development of the vision.

Lower Nooksack River Comprehensive Flood Hazard Management Plan (CFHMP)


Adopted in 1999, this plan provides detailed recommendations for flood hazard reduction strategies along the lower Nooksack River. The plan is currently being updated to integrate flood management strategies with the needs of salmon and the agricultural land uses within the floodplain.
During and since development of the CFHMP, several studies have been completed to advance specific project components recommended in the plan.

Hydrologic & Hydraulic Analyses


Sediment Management Studies


Geomorphic Investigations


Reach-Specific Integrated Project Planning


Reach 1: Interstate 5 to Bellingham Bay
Reach 4: Confluence of Upper Forks near Deming to Everson Bridge

Salmon and Salmon Habitat


In addition to flood planning, local resource agencies developed a Salmonid Recovery Plan for the Noosack River watershed and coastal tributaries within Whatcom County (Water Resource Inventory Area Number 1 or WRIA1). The plan, habitat assessments, and other salmon-related studies can be found on the WRIA 1 Salmon Recovery Board website