You don’t usually think of wetlands when you think of transportation. Oregon Department of Transportation is often defined by what it creates: new multi-use paved paths, infrastructure to electrify transportation, repaired and replaced bridges, and much more.
But things made out of concrete and steel are only part of the bigger picture; Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) also has a green thumb. Now, you can get see how that green thumb is helping in a new, interactive story map showcasing ODOT’s wetland mitigation.
Behind some of ODOT’s ecological efforts are wetland specialists who work diligently to create and restore wetlands throughout the state. These wetlands, required by law, are used for mitigation, which is the process of creating green spaces to preemptively offset the environmental impacts of construction projects.
After these highway construction projects are completed, wetland mitigation projects get started. Each site provides a myriad of environmental benefits, which, with good stewardship, can last in perpetuity. Innovative wetland mitigation results in climate benefits, land preservation, productive partnerships and new public amenities. ODOT’s Geographic Information Systems team recently created a story map website that describes the process of wetland mitigation banking. Visit the website to learn about ODOT’s green thumb – and how the agency uses it to better the natural world and all of Oregon.