Historically, many river shorelines were stabilized and hardened with concrete and steel to protect developments from flooding and erosion, or to accommodate commercial navigation or industry. Typically shorelines were developed for a single purpose. Today, there is growing interest in developing shorelines for multiple purposes so that additional benefits can be accrued. Soft engineering is the use of ecological principles and practices to reduce erosion and achieve the stabilization and safety of shorelines, while enhancing habitat, improving aesthetics and saving money.
- Best Management Practices for Soft Engineering of Shorelines (manual)
- “Soft Engineering: Skillful Blend of Technology and Ecology Enhances Urban Waterfronts,” Upwellings, Fall 2000 (PDF)