Cabin Branch Stream Restoration
Funded by National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Innovative Nutrient and Sediment Reduction Grant and the Maryland Department of the Environment State Revolving Loan Fund Green Grant
Chesapeake Rivers Association, Inc. (The Severn Riverkeeper Program)
The primary focus of this project is to restore a degraded stream and reduce the export of sediments and nutrients from a heavily urbanized sub-watershed to downstream waterways and wetlands. By eliminating sources of erosion and increasing the residence time of water in stream, we seek to mimic not only the historic configuration of our stream valley floodplains but also important ecosystem services such as nitrogen processing, and phosphorous and suspended sediment retention.
The restoration and rehydration of the streams and headwaters, adjacent floodplain and riparian areas along Saltworks Creek will occur as a result of the installation of a system of weirs, berms, and sand seepage wetlands – Regenerative Stream Conveyance (RSC). These techniques have been successfully utilized to restore stream and wetland function, reconnect the watertrain to the floodplains, and restore floodplain storage and historic native plant communities in both of the targeted watersheds. Restoring these important ecosystem functions provides opportunity to improve habitat for spawning and resident fish and delivers much improved water quality downstream to receiving tidal waters. This significantly reduces the high nutrient and sediment loadings to the receiving creek
By monitoring the targeted stream, before and after restoration, this project will provide much needed information about the cost effectiveness and sustainability of this promising approach to in-stream restoration. The University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, Chesapeake Biological Laboratory is performing monitoring in conformance with an EPA approved QAPP.
Goals and Outcomes
- Re-establish important ecosystem functions for the stream, such as the capacity to process pollutants like nitrogen, to moderate water discharge, and to control erosion, especially during storm flows. By controlling sediment export from the catchment to the tidal zone, restoration will help reduce or eliminate dredging, which is costly and environmentally unfavorable.
- Reduce nutrient and sediment loads to the Chesapeake Bay
- Add to the scientific documentation of the RSC performance in nutrient load reduction of stormwater.
- Provide a case study of RSC technology utilization in communities experiencing rapid growth and new development that can be replicated by both the private and public sectors
Together, with its sister project on the South River, which is also partially funded by NFWF, Saltworks will create high quality non-tidal wetlands to treat stormwater coming from these highly impervious watersheds, and will result in significant reductions in the amount of sediments and nutrients delivered to tidewater. Significant pollutant loads from stormwater runoff represent a significant systematic resource loss that is symptomatic of the problems of the Chesapeake Bay. The proposed RSCs provide much needed data for this promising technique, which is becoming widespread in highly urbanized regions, with existing development such as Anne Arundel
Project Management by the Severn Riverkeeper Program.
We will use a Pre-Bidding Qualification process, which will run co-terminus with the advertising period. For those firms that meet the qualifications, Bid will be invited by no later than September 24, 2012. Pre-Bid Meeting will be scheduled with qualifying bidders prior to September 24, 2012. Bids will be opened September 28, 2012. Notice to Proceed is expected by November with Construction taking no more than 16 weeks.
This project requires the cooperation of several commercial property owners – each owning a piece of the floodplain or stream that flows through it. Temporary construction easements have been obtained from those property owners. The project will require sensitive coordination with a few of these businesses with regards to access, especially. Additionally, this project required a Forest Management Plan, which is based on adherence to the Planting Plan and Details (Sheets 16 and 19) and some additional monitoring and removal of invasive species currently on site. (Attachment H of the Bid Documents).
© 2012 Severn Riverkeeper 329 Riverview Trail Annapolis, Maryland 21401
a 501(c)(3) nonprofit conservation organization