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Erosion at Pilchuck Park in Snohomish being monitored

Tribune staff photo

City staff are checking on erosion at Pilchuck Park to monitor for

SNOHOMISH — The erosion of the bank at Pilchuck Park has the attention of city staff, but it is not getting resolved anytime soon. 
“We are planning on monitoring it as it gets closer and closer to the road,” said city engineer Yosh Monzaki. “As the river flows, it’s going to continue to erode the access road itself. Right now, it’s safe.” 
The muddy and seemingly disintegrating bank was looked at by a geotechnical engineer this time last year, and the same consultant will return soon as river waters reveal what erosion has done  so far to the drive leading into Pilchuck Park, at 169 Cypress Ave. 
Options to resolve the erosion problem include reinforcing the bank, applying methods to reduce velocity at the bank, relocating the road or just dumping rock right along the bank, Monzaki said. 
But for now, the planning process for erosion control has not yet begun, and it is unlikely that anything will happen this year, Monzaki said. 
It’s hard to predict whether it will need repair sooner rather than later. 
“It’s a river, right? And that’s basically what they do — they meander,” he said. 
He said it’s being actively montiored , with three to four staff members sharing the task of checking on the area “at least every other week, on average.”
Next planned steps are to gather details in order to estimate costs of a permitting process.
Permitting will be needed from the city — yes, the city has to get a permit from itself — as well as state and federal agencies including the state Department of Fish & Wildlife, the Army Corps of Engineers, and Federal Emergency Management Agency.  
“The permit process is going to take longer than the construction,” he said. 
Still, if something occurs at the site, the project will move up the list. In the meantime, Monzaki said, “stay as far away from the bank as you can.” 
He also said people should not drive too close to the edge of that area and it’s not a bad idea for larger trucks to avoid it altogether.
“If the bank erodes drastically and all of a sudden the road’s underwater,” the process would move more quickly, he said. 



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