Baker Wetlands Reserve
South Lawrence Trafficway
The enhancement of the Baker Wetlands (927 acres of protected natural wildlife reserve) was a challenging piece of the K-10 project. With smart, safe, and conscious engineering and construction practices, Emery Sapp & Sons were able to replace approximately 58 acres of wetlands and impacted habitat by creating and restoring more than 300 acres of new wetlands, with accessible bike paths and walking trails stretching from Iowa Street to Haskell Avenue. Of the 317 acres of new wetlands reserve, 37 acres were restored of the Upland Prairie and 16 acres of Riparian Habitats were restored and preserved. A wetland education and research center was built with the dedication of studying and stewarding the Baker Wetlands environment for future generations. The facility is operated and owned by Baker University and with assistance from the state of Kansas, an endowment is being provided for covering maintenance, operations, and administration of wetlands enhancements.
Owner Kansas Department of Transportation
Reserve Owner Baker University
Civil Engineer Kansas Department of Transportation & HNTB
ESS Role General Contractor
Project Duration 40 months
Awards ABC Heart of America Excellence in Construction
Scope of Work
ESS had to implement special measures to limit the disruption to this area. In order to protect and preserve the wetlands ecosystem, all clearing and grubbing had to be performed by hand and recycled timber mats were used when hauling to limit surface impact. Equipment used to place foundation stabilization and lower 2 feet of embankment had less than 5 PSI (pounds per square inch) of ground pressure. In addition, 102,000 square feet of noise walls and landscaping were implemented to create a barrier along K-10 providing increased protection to the ecosystem. Scope details include the excavation & grading quantities from the South Lawrence Trafficway (K10) & Baker Wetlands project as a whole.