George Harris was the Visionary and Lead Designer of the team for the Badlands Parkway in Grasslands National Park, which received the 2019 Brian Eckel Award in the Environmental Category. The road was designed on site by walking the entire length of the road and laying it out manually. The points were then surveyed in and the alignment verified. The plan included an approach to minimize the ecological impact while maximizing visitor’s experience, as the site is under an Environmental Protection Order due to the critical Sage Grouse habitat.
The project consists of a 10.4km scenic road using a single lane, dual direction configuration. The Badlands Parkway provides access to six viewpoints for visitors of varied mobility, increasing park visitation and protecting the grassland from off road environmental disturbance. Work was completed with minimal disturbance, avoiding critical habitat of native grassland wildlife species. The project team provided transportation engineering, landscape architecture and planning, geotechnical engineering, tendering services, construction inspection, surveying, aerial LiDAR, and remotely piloted aircraft systems to design a solution centered around the concept of minimalist design
In 2002 the Brian Eckel Awards, named in honour of the late Brian Eckel, P. Eng. were implimented to applaude and promote innovative projects of ACEC-SK member firms. Member project profiles highlight industry leading talent and the application of solutions that meet new requirements, technology or methods.