Hydromorphological restoration of the Glandon riverbed at Maurienne (France)
The Glandon river, which flows through the Savoie province of Maurienne before flowing into the Isère, had previously suffered a series of ecological problems following its artificial modification. The hydromorphological restoration project to restore the watercourse to its former route and improve its hydraulic functioning will eventually (over the next 3 to 5 years) restore its biological communities of animal and plant life to their proper balance by making more habitats available, for example. The erosion of minor beds has been reversed using plant engineering techniques.
One of the primary goals of the project was to restore aquatic species to their natural habitat so that they can move freely through the watercourse, feed and breed. For example, large blocks of quarried stone have been placed in the watercourse and arranged to accelerate or decelerate water flows. In this way, they create deeper pools where trout and char can rest, as well as faster running and more extensive areas where they can feed. Free blocks create an easily accessible ramp between the Gardon and the Isère.
A wider riverbed to accommodate a more diverse range of plants
The hydromorphological restoration of the Glandon river has also enabled the creation of a new bed for one section of the river. Thanks to a series of particularly dry autumn months, the teams of Equo Vivo were able to widen the riverbed from 5-7 metres to 10-20 metres over a short period of time. This wider bed will allow the gradual development of a more diverse range of plants. Returning water to the river clearly reveals its new route, complemented by new plantings of native species, such as willow.