Originally designed and constructed in 1972, the Garden’s 60 acres of lakes are a vital part of the Skokie River watershed and a jewel in the Forest Preserves of Cook County’s land holdings. In storm events the lakes take on a huge influx of water offering more than 120 million gallons of stormwater storage. Wave action against steep, turf lined shores, combined with radically fluctuating stormwater levels, had resulted in the original lake shoreline progressively failing over the years. This enduring multi-phase project has involved many miles of restored shorelines that are now able to handle regular stormwater flux and stand today as beautiful aquatic native plant gardens and ecologically rich resources that also serve as a model for resiliency.
We are incredibly proud of our long-term relationship with this venerable institution and remain actively engaged in the ongoing efforts to see our Shoreline Restoration Master Plan through to fruition by completing all related scopes of work from wetland delineation and permitting, to bid documentation and construction administration. The Shida Shade Garden Shoreline restoration work was completed in fall of 2021; with of 5 of their 5.7 miles of shoreline now recreated, the Garden stands as a remarkable regional resource of applied best practices.