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May 26, 2023

Roland Middleton
Whatcom County Public Works

'The Berm' Earns Statewide Recognition as Public Works Project of the Year

The American Public Works Association (APWA) Washington Chapter selected Whatcom County's Birch Bay Drive & Pedestrian Facility Project as a 2023 Public Works Project of the Year. Locally known as 'The Berm,' the project was chosen as one of only seven award recipients in Washington State.

Each year APWA recognizes the efforts of public works agencies, contractors, and consultants who develop, own, and maintain infrastructure projects that promote excellence in construction management and administration. 

"The WA Chapter is honored to be able to recognize high-quality projects across the spectrum of public works and showcase the value that public works provides to our everyday lives," said Tina Nelson, APWA-WA Award Committee Chair.

Awards are provided in four divisions and five categories. Whatcom County won 'Project of the Year' in the Environment category's $5M - $25M division. Whatcom County Public Works staff accepted the award Thursday, April 27, 2023, at the Greater Tacoma Center in Tacoma, WA. 

About the Project
Completing a vision that began in 1975, the Birch Bay Drive & Pedestrian Facility Project constructed a 1.58-mile-long soft shore berm parallel to Birch Bay Drive. 'The Berm' provides mitigation for both beach erosion and roadway protection, as well as reduces coastal flooding impacts, improves pedestrian safety, and restores the beach and marine habitat. 

To view the winning submittal PDFs, visit http://washington.apwa.net/PageDetails/10593 

About APWA
The American Public Works Association is a not-for-profit, international organization with more than 30,000 members involved in public works. APWA supports those who operate, improve and maintain public works and infrastructure through advocacy, education, and member engagement. APWA has 63 chapters in North America.

        We acknowledge that Whatcom County is located on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples. They cared for the lands that included what we’d call the Puget Sound region, Vancouver Island and British Columbia since time immemorial. This gives us the great obligation and opportunity to learn how to care for our surrounding areas and all the natural and human resources we require to live. We express our deepest respect and gratitude for our indigenous neighbors, the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, for their enduring care and protection of our shared lands and waterways.
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