Oak Point


Through an agreement with the NYSDEC, the owner of this parcel in the Bronx was allowed to develop the property interior in exchange for building wetlands along the water’s edge. The purpose was to beautify the shoreline, create a haven for day-tripping birds coming from the North and South Brother Islands nearby, and stop silt and contaminants from seeping into the East River. The project had two major components: the removal of the decaying wood bulkheads and other debris from the former float yard, and the expansion of an intertidal marsh wetland.

Lessons Learned

  •  Steep slopes at restoration sites make wetland establishment extremely difficult if not impossible.
  •  The impact of ice damage and debris washed up during storm events should be accounted for in project design. 
  • Restoration sites with fully-developed root systems are much more likely to survive major storms.
  • It takes time for plants to become established, and temporary protection such as fencing or wave-breaking structures may be needed for long-term success
  • The constraints posed by limiting fill to areas above the mean high water line, meeting FEMA base flood elevation requirements of +13 ft NAVD88, and trying to maximize the buildable area pose a significant challenge at the site.