Indiana University Campus Jordan River Restoration
Winding through the heart of Indiana University’s (IU) Bloomington Campus is a charming river which regularly helps IU rank on “most beautiful US campuses” lists. With decades of patchwork repairs and neglect, segments of the river were eroded and caused problems with pedestrian access and green-space usability along the waterway. We worked closely with the university’s landscape architect team to develop a river enhancement plan for this nearly one-mile stretch through campus, using stream restoration techniques that supported the river’s existing character. Thoughtful yet practical additions included an upgraded boardwalk system for improved pedestrian traffic flow and accessibility, as well as intimate gathering spaces near the river and opportunities to increase students’ interaction with the water.
Goals included returning the river to its original form using techniques that will reduce the need for future bank repair work.
While IU was interested in improving the river corridor, they did not want to distract from the river’s current character. They felt the corridor provides a statement of its own and is a significant part of the campus history. Our stormwater and ecology experts worked with IU to develop very detailed practices that provided the repair and enhancement needed while reusing materials and forming to the existing landscape.