Best Stream Restoration in the Bay

This category recognizes outstanding projects in the stream corridor that are explicitly designed to enhance the function, stability and ecosystem services of an urban stream.

Strong contenders in the category met the following criteria:

  1. Be part of an integrated watershed-based restoration approach.
  2. Meets or exceed clearly stated objectives to improve stream habitat and reduce pollutant delivery to the Bay (some quantitative documentation is helpful here)
  3. Successfully withstand significant floods without failing
  4. Utilize an innovative and comprehensive approach to stream restoration such as floodplain reconnection, legacy sediment removal or natural channel design techniques.
  5. Improve biological uplift in the stream reach, enhance potential fishery habitat or restore the floodplain plant community.
  6. Promote public access, watershed education or neighborhood outreach along the stream corridor.

First Place

Alger Park Stream Restoration and Upland LID Project

Alger Park, post-restoration.

Project Team

District Department of Energy & Environment

LimnoTech

Biohabitats

Environmental Quality Resources

The Alger Park Stream Restoration Project combined public and private space LID in the upland areas with two different types of stream restorations in the stream valley to maximize the restoration opportunities the site presented to ensure environmental uplift. The RSC approach used on the upper reach helped fill gullies, up to 20ft in some areas, and dissipate flow. The downstream portion of the project created a braided stream-wetland complex of pools and riffles, planted with over 3,000 native wetland plants. The project stood out to the jurors for the scale of its impact, use of up-slope practices, and coordination with the local community.

To read the full project narrative and view more photos, visit the project folder on our Google Drive!

Second Place

Springhouse Run Stream Restoration

Springhouse Run, post-restoration.

Project Team

District Department of Energy and Environment

LimnoTech

Underwood and Associates

The Springhouse Run restoration reestablished a self-sustaining stream through a combination of regenerative stream channel and legacy sediment removal techniques. Located on U.S. National Arboretum property, the project established in-stream structures and floodplain wetlands while replacing invasive species with native plants throughout the reach. The project also excelled due to its watershed-based restoration approach and public education components.

To read the full project narrative and view more photos, visit the project folder on our Google Drive!

Third Place

Bacon Ridge Stream Restoration

Log-jam structure in Bacon Ridge project, post-restoration

Project Team

Arundel Rivers Federation
BioHabitats
Meadville Land Service
Chris & Kristin Mowry

The Bacon Ridge Branch restoration used an integrated watershed-based restoration approach consisting of a natural, low-impact design that featured interlocking log jams made from material harvested on site and placed at various points in the stream, acting as grade control structures in place of typical rock weirs. The use of wood as grade control is consistent within this coastal plain stream system and adds habitat complexity. The project reconnected the stream to its floodplain, enhanced and restored habitat, provided nutrient-reduction benefits, and improved stabilization. This project excelled for its unique and innovative design approach, as well as the cost-effectiveness of the technique that allowed for a larger restoration project.

To read the full project narrative and view more photos, visit the project folder on our Google Drive!

Honorable Mention

Dividing Creek Restoration

Dividing Creek, post-restoration.

Project Team

Anne Arundel County

KCI Technologies

RK&K

Paydirt, LLC

The restoration of Dividing Creek demonstrates an integrated watershed approach, installed in conjunction with two BMP retrofits treating upland impervious areas. The restoration took an intentional approach to minimize disturbance within portions of the stream channel. The restoration of the upstream portions were completed by only installing a few riffle/weir structures to ensure stability within those reaches, but left larger portions of the stream channel untouched to allow existing vegetation and stable habitat to remain. Seepage wetland techniques consisting of a series of shallow pools and riffle weir grade controls were used to improve the wetland community, enhance hydrology, and raise the water table.

To read the full project narrative and view more photos, visit the project folder on our Google Drive!