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Owner: Vancouver Park Board Engineering: Moffatt & Nichol Environmental: Raincoast Applied Ecology Landscape: Sharp & Diamond Landscape Architecture Inc Contractor: Sumas Remediation and Vancouver Pile Driving Funding by: City of Vancouver

Credit 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 TOTAL

TOTAL COSTS Design and Permitting: $325,000 Demolition and Rough Grading: $1,351,000 Restoration and Landscape: $851,000 Total: $2,527,000


To be filled in by the Green Shores group

Points Awarded 2 1 0 4 3 2 4 1 2 2 1 22

Certification Level GOLD


Create a diverse marine riparian forest composed of big‐leaf maple, western redcedar, Sitka spruce, bitter cherry, and Douglas fir in the adjacent park area.

Improve sand and gravel intertidal habitat which can be used by surf smelt and Pacific sandlance for spawning.

Jericho Beach, Vancouver, British Columbia


To demolish the Jericho Marginal Wharf for reasons of public safety and ecological restoration.

To restore the site with stakeholder input to create an environmentally sensitive, sustainable, and functional solution.


To combine ecological restoration with an exceptional urban waterfront experience and program.

An Environmental Protection Plan was prepared that outlined extensive sedi‐ mentation and pollution control measures.

Maintain recreational values.

Acknowledge the site’s history.

The priority concern was creosote contamination management during removal of the wood pilings. An experienced operator removed as many piles as possible during low tide. Small debris was captured during demolition with tarps, booms and hand removal. Absorbent booms and pads were used to capture mobilized hydrocarbons. Wood piles and debris were contained and then properly disposed of off‐site.

PROJECT BACKGROUND The Jericho Marginal Wharf (the “Wharf”) was built more than 60 years ago to serve the needs of the Royal Canadian Air Forces amphibious aircraft operations. In July 2008, the Vancouver Park Board adopted a concept plan that included demolition and removal of the Wharf, restoration of the natural beach and foreshore, and retention of a small portion of the deck railings for historic purposes.

OVERALL DESIGN STRATEGY Changes to the shoreline: 

Removal of the Wharf decking, wood piles with creosote‐derived contaminants, and concrete debris from the intertidal zone.

Addition of sand fill to enhance and improve intertidal substrates.

Addition of boulders in the intertidal and shallow subtidal zones.

Activities with the potential to introduce contaminants into the marine environment were undertaken away from the intertidal zone or fully contained. A spill‐containment kit was kept on site during construction and fuel and other potential contaminants were stored in designated, contained areas away from the foreshore.

Key ecological components: 

Restore backshore beach‐grass community with dune wild‐rye, beach pea, yarrow, and silvery burweed. 2


BEACH THICKET           306 Cornus sericea           408 Salix hookeriana           306 Rhamnus purshiana

Red Twigged Dogwood Hooker's Willow Cascara

BEACH GRASS MEADOW           236 Achillea millefolium           118 Camas quamash           236 Eriophyllum lanatum           236 Lathyrus japonicus      10,639 Leymus mollis           236 Lupinus littoralis           236 Solidago canadensis           236 Fragaria chilioensis

Common Yarrow Common Camas Wooly Sunflower Beach Pea Beach Grass Seashore Lupine Canada Goldenrod Coastal Strawberry

SHRUB THICKET           263 Cornus sericea           263 Ribes sanguineum           350 Rosa nootkana           350 Rubus parviflorus           263 Salix hookeriana           263 Symphoricarpus albus

Red Twigged Dogwood Red Flowering Currant Nootka Rose Thimbleberry Hookers Willow Snowberry

RED OSIER DOGWOOD THICKET        1,639 Cornus sericea        1,595 Fragaria chilioensis

Red Twigged Dogwood Beach Strawberry

MARINE RIPARIAN FOREST           523 Oemleria cerasiformis           523 Physocarpus capitatus           523 Rubus parviflorus           523 Rubus spectabilis

Indian Plum Pacific Ninebark Thimbleberry Salmonberry

VIEWING DECK PLANTING           635 Gaultheria shallon


LOW POINT PLANTING        1,983 Juncus effusus

Common Rush

BULBS          431           431           431           431           431

Nodding Onion Harvest Brodea Common Camas Indian Paintbrush White Fawn Lily


Public engagement was essential for finding a design solution that balanced recreation use with ecological values.

To determine how best to remove the wharf structure, the project team had to determine what type of fill materials would be found beneath the upslope portion, the risk of contaminant mobilization during demolition, and how to create a stable beach profile in a dynamic shoreline.

Because the project was divided into two phases (demolition + restoration) it allowed the design team to review the beach dynamics for 10 months including several large storms. This allowed us to revise some of the shoreline features to address minor erosion.

The expertise of an experienced contractor (Vancouver Pile Driving) was essential for undertaking the complex job of wharf demolition.

OUTCOMES Allium cernuum Brodiaea coronaria Camassia quamash Castilleja affinis Erythronium oregonum

The project has created a new beach that is already an important part of Vancouver’s shoreline park system. On summer days, it supports swimmers, kayakers, dog walkers, and sun‐bathers.

The ecological features are beginning to develop as shrubs and trees mature. As usual, invasive species are already a management issue, and recreation use and trail access cause some wear‐and‐tear on the plant communities.

The project has also raised the bar for shoreline projects in City of Vancouver parks and will be an important precedent for future projects.


Site design that balances active recreation with ecological restoration in an urban waterfront context.

Creating a stable shoreline without extensive use of rock armour or sea walls.

Managing the removal of contaminated wood pilings and wharf structure to minimize environmental impacts.

Undertaking a rigorous public engagement process with multiple stakeholders in order to build support for removing the wharf and restoring the shoreline and prioritizing ecological restoration.



Aerial photograph of the wharf that was removed


Conceptual option (not the final design)



The Wharf

Pilings supporting the wharf deck

Aerial photograph of the site

Construction Phase

Oct. 25, 2011 – Shoreline restoration

Sept. 21, 2011 ‐ Demolition


Marine riparian forest planting

Beach meadow planting

Viewing deck with interpretive signs

For More Information Contact: Nick Page, Raincoast Applied Ecology, Vancouver, BC Phone: 604‐742‐9890 Website:



The Jericho Marginal Wharf (the “Wharf”) was built more than 60 years ago to serve the needs of the Royal Canadian Air Forces amphibious air...

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