Consulting Solutions that Work for People and the Environment

Dam Removal/Fish Passage


During the industrial revolution our nation’s waterways were dammed to harness power for sawmills, gristmills, and tanneries. Today many of these dams sit abandoned, having outlived their intended use, yet still impacting the river’s environment. Removal of these dams leads to restoring the river system to its original free-flowing, natural condition. Gomez and Sullivan is adept at all aspects of dam removal, resulting from our involvement in more than 15 removal feasibility studies and several successful dam removals. Our experience includes removing defunct dams to help restore the riverine environment, restoration of diadromous fish passage, improving water quality, and restoring the natural transport of sediment and nutrients.

For functioning dams, we have a thorough understanding of various fish passage alternatives such as denil, steeppass, nature-like bypass channels, ramps, etc. These facilities allow fish migration throughout the year past the dam structure. Our team of fishery biologists and design engineers work jointly from conceptual planning through final construction to ensure a sound and functional fish passage unit. Additional studies include passage effectiveness and fish monitoring programs post construction.

Our Dam Removal/Fish Passage Services Include:
  • Stream Restoration
  • Sediment Sampling and Evaluation
  • Sediment Management Plans
  • Sediment Transport
  • Public Outreach
  • Geomorphic Assessments
  • Hydraulic Modeling
  • Hydrologic Assessments
  • Design for Dam Removal and Fish Passage
  • Alternatives Analyses
  • Permitting and Agency Consultation
  • Wetland Assessments
  • Construction Phase Services
Case Studies