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River Projects: Watersheds

Projects include: encouraging and assisting watershed-scale conservation projects; coordinating efforts of agencies and groups; developing resource materials. Recent projects involve: facilitating watershed restoration planning to identify priority projects, visioning, organizational development; assisting with public involvement; and developing interpretive materials.




Neff Run Watershed Restoration
From Vision to Reality

Allegheny Mountain Region, MD (February 2002) - The Neff Run Phase I project - a Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance (Rivers & Trails) project - demonstrates the benefits of a multi-objective approach stream restoration. Over 40 rock vane weirs were installed, fish blockages were removed, stream banks were stabilized and riparian areas enhanced with vegetative plantings, and fencing was installed on an adjacent farm to keep cattle out of the stream. The damaging effects of acid mine drainage (AMD) are being mitigated through a combination of limestone dumpings, and the construction of a limestone leachbed to treat AMD before it enters the stream.

The initiative includes on-the-ground restoration activities, community outreach and educational components. Rivers & Trails coordinated development of the Neff Run Watershed Restoration Plan, completed in March 2000, which is providing overall guidance for the restoration activities.

This truly impressive effort was made possible through a partnership of 20 public, private, and non-profit entities including Allegany County, Maryland Bureau of Mines, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Maryland State Highway Administration, Georges Creek Watershed Association, Trout Unlimited and the National Park Service Rivers & Trails program. For information contact: Ursula Lemanski, Rivers & Trails Program, Potomac Field Office, 304-535-4018.


Rappahannock River Watershed Restoration

Water quality and wildlife habitat improved through new riparian forest buffer: Upper Rappahannock watershed, VA (June 5, 2000)-Over the last two years the Friends of the Rappahannock River (FOR) have completed a series of streambank restoration projects to improve water quality and wildlife habitat within the upper Rappahannock watershed. This summer FOR completed the last of the major projects they have scheduled. To date, FOR has planted approximately 3 miles of forested buffer along tributaries to the Rappahannock, totaling close to 10 acres of new riparian forest. Almost a half-mile of actual streambank restoration, using soil bioengineering techniques, was completed in conjunction with these projects. These projects were undertaken exclusively on private lands. A total of $75,000 in federal, state and private funds were raised to complete the projects. State and local partners volunteered the use of heavy equipment, while dozens of FOR members provided the hand labor. RTCA assisted FOR in the public involvement that was necessary to gain approval by local landowners to conduct the projects on their property. Public involvement included the completion of a reduced impact guide, "Growing Greener in Your Rappahannock River Watershed," and the establishment of a "citizen network" in the upper watershed area. For more information, please contact: Chuck Barscz, Rivers & Trails Program, Philadelphia, PA, 215-597-6482.



Discovering the Colorado: A Vision for the Austin-Bastrop River Corridor (Contact Kathryn Nichols)

Center for Watershed Protection

Urban Subwatershed Restoration Manual series

Watershed Planning Information (specific to the Chesapeake Bay but applicable to all)

Best Management Practices Guide for Medina River Landowners- (Contact: Steve Bonner)

Growing Greener in Your Rappahannock River Watershed - (Contact: Chuck Barscz)


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