Status: In Progress


The project site is located on the St. Joe River approximately 10 miles upstream from St. Maries in Benewah County. The sites are on private land with 10 properties and nearly 1,500 feet of streambank.


The project is led by the Benewah Soil and Water Conservation District with funding support from the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) 319 Nonpoint Source Management subgrant, Avista, DEQ Lake Management Plan, the Restoration Partnership, and landowners. Overall, the project will provide streambank stabilization and revegetation on 1,456 linear feet of streambank along the St Joe River. Cottonwood trees will be planted in the riparian zone with willows along the banks. The sites are on nearly vertical, bare, and unstable banks which provide little habitat value and produces sediment (with associated nutrients) and temperature loading to the St Joe River. Bank heights are 5 to 15 feet. The site is not contaminated by mine waste and has good potential to provide healthy habitats for native trout and wildlife.


Major construction for the project occurred in fall 2018. Engineering design was completed by the Idaho Soil and Water Conservation Commission, and used rock stabilization along with 320 willow bundles to stabilize banks. Cottonwood trees will be planted in the approximately five acres of riparian zone in 2019 with monitoring of the site’s condition and maintenance of the new structures and plantings.


The expected benefits from stabilizing and revegetating the sites are: reduction in sediment loads and associated nutrients, reduction in solar loading, and enhanced fish and wildlife cover and habitat.


Leann Daman, Administrator
Benewah Soil and Water Conservation District
(208) 987-4011


Idaho Department of Environmental Quality
Contact: Kajsa Van de Riet
(208) 769-1422


Idaho DEQ – Coeur d’Alene Lake Management Plan
Idaho DEQ – 319 Nonpoint Source Management Program
Idaho Soil and Water Conservation Commission
Private Landowners

Eroding bank at the St. Joe River Streambank Stabilization and Vegetation Project site before the project.

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