Birch Bay Drive & Pedestrian Facility Project

Artist rendering of completed project

Rendering of Path Type I on Berm
Rendering of Path Type II Adjacent to Paving

Project Summary

This project will restore the natural shoreline, protect the roadway from storm damage, and support pedestrian safety with a separated berm that runs from the mouth of Terrell Creek (Lora Lane) to Cedar Avenue approximately 1.58 miles in length along the beach. The project will be constructed over two seasons concluding in April 2021.

Project Details:

Status: Construction began December 9, 2019 and will continue through March 2020 for this first project season. The project will be on hiatus from April through September 2020.

  • Contract Awarded: Yes
  • Contract Amount: $8,724,841.00
  • Contractor: Granite Construction, Inc.

Project Updates - Construction Schedule:  

Due to the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic and changing limitations put in place to keep the community safe, the current construction schedule may frequently change to accommodate a safe work environment and community. 

It is the Contractor and Whatcom County’s intent to finish the following work before the suspension of work at the end of May:

  • Drainage improvements and concrete work immediately adjacent to the Bay Breeze Restaurant.
  • From Bay Breeze Restaurant to Lora Lane including installation of swale overflow structures, path access points, and gravel paving along the path.

Traffic impacts are likely to include some single lane and shoulder closures. Wait times for lane closures should be less than 5 minutes.

The web will likely not be updated again until the suspension of work begins at the end of May.


  1. Project Description
  2.            News Flash          

Soft Shore Protection

Construction contract is planned to be awarded November 2019 with major elements of the project's 1st phase (soft shore protection) includes the following:
Project Limits: Lora Lane to Cedar Avenue, 1.58 miles
Remove the rip rap, sea walls, groins, and bulkheads along Birch Bay Drive and replace them with a "natural" soft shore beach; reestablishing the beach profile and improving flood protection for the roadway and adjacent structures; this will improve habitat functions and the currently disrupted natural littoral drift of the beach.
Replace and retrofit substandard stormwater facilities and out falls to improve water quality for this significant shellfish area.
Provide beach access and a pedestrian facility as a portion of the Coast Millennium Trail.
Project construction will be over two seasons; September 2017 - May 2018 and September 2018 - May 2019. These work windows were established to avoid construction during the summer high tourism season at Birch Bay and in-water work windows established by environmental permits.



Other Project Information