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Jack Tennant Memorial Bridge Fish Habitat Offsetting

Project Summary

A fish habitat offsetting project was required by Fisheries and Oceans Canada to offset the impact on fish and fish habitat resulting from the temporary instream bridge berm installed for the Jack Tennant Memorial Bridge Project in the Town of Cochrane, Alberta. Montrose’s Consulting & Engineering Division (formerly Matrix Solutions) devised and executed a plan to create and enhance fish habitat in a side channel 225 m downstream of the bridge.

Our Role

Our team acted as prime consultant to the Town. We prepared an offsetting design, which created and enhanced fish habitat and increased connectivity between the side channel and the main Bow River channel. Our scope of work included: 

  • conducting a hydrologic and a hydraulic assessment 
  • establishing design grades for the lowered side channel 
  • obtaining regulatory approvals and leading a First Nations consultation 
  • completing vegetation surveys, including rare plant, plant communities, and weeds 
  • completing wildlife surveys, including habitat, nests, mineral licks, and dens that may require setbacks 
  • conducting hydrotechnical field engineering and water quality monitoring during project construction and instream work 
  • conducting postconstruction monitoring annually in 2020, 2021, and 2022 


The creation of fish habitat features in the side channel is a high value solution and will increase instream cover and spawning habitat and therefore improve the functionality of this reach of the river. Our project team monitored this side channel from 2020 to 2022, confirming the project is functioning as designed. 

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