The Columbia Bottom Conservation Area is located at the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, north of St. Louis. Once the site of a town known as Columbia, and later St. Vrain, the area was established as a conservation area in 1997. Ecosystem restoration projects are underway to create bottomland forests, wetlands, prairies and cropland.
How could this mosaic of ecosystems, and their corresponding maintenance regimes, provide an alternative model for the JNEM riverfront site?
Could the concrete-lined ponds at JNEM be reconcieved of as wetlands? Could the ornamental plantings surrounding the Arch be treated as bottomland forests growing on a natural levee?