Proposed Actions: Strategies II, III, and V
This joint strategy proposes a restoration plan is designed to:
1) Clean the stream of current pollution and prevent future contamination,
2) Restore historical continuity, and
3) Provide a natural area for community members’ enjoyment.
By restructuring the stream banks and planting native flora along this reach, degradation by erosion can be limited and flow slowed. Reconnecting the creek to its floodplain will allow the creek to flood naturally, limiting the prevalence of incising. Both of these alterations would prevent the creek from having too much solid matter and will improve water quality. Adding in-stream structures and native plants to the creek and surrounding areas provides habitat for the return of native fauna and will stabilize the floodplain. Amenities for human use will help limit the threat of anthropogenic degradation to areas only constructed for human recreation, such as pathways and picnic areas, thus increasing the stream’s resilience. The implementation of these proposed actions would include:
Trash and Litter Clean-Up Day [Enter Date Here or TBA]
- See [enter link to “Stream Clean-Up Day” here]
Bank Restoration and Floodplain Reconnection (see Fig. 3)
- Use log vanes and limestone boulders to reinforce the creek banks
- Elevate the creek bed to reconnect it with its floodplain
- Cover these areas in soil and seed this with native plants
- Place a layer of straw over the soil and stake down a coconut mesh mat
- Remove concrete buttresses
In-Stream Structures (see Fig. 4)
- Placement of boulders, cobble and gravel to create riffles and habitat
- Installation of root-wads and logs along the bank to create fish and insect habitat
- Small Bandalong Litter Trap™ at beginning and end of restored area to trap litter
Planting of Native Riparian Species and those representative of the Post Oak Savanna Ecoregion
- American Elm, Cedar Elm, Black Hickory, and Plateau Live Oak to provide shade and leafs
- Spikerush and Knotgrass, serving as perennial riparian grasses with wide root systems for bank stabilization
- Prairie grasses that extend out from the creek banks to provide ample water uptake in a natural floodplain, as well as habitat for birds and small mammals
Amenitizing the Creek for Educational and Recreational Purposes
- Trail(s) along the stream path with intermittently placed benches made of recycled plastic
- Seated picnic areas, constructed from recycled plastic
- Waste baskets to minimize pollution
- Lighting for safety
- Signage explaining:
- The previous state of the creek
- The changes made during the restoration
- The benefits of a healthy stream
- Reminders and Methods to prevent future stream pollution
- How this creek connects to the larger watershed and community.
Forest Service. 2014. Texas Ecoregions — Post Oak Savannah. Texas A&M [Internet]. [cited 2015 Feb 8]. Available from: http://texastreeid.tamu.edu/content/texasecoregions/PostOakSavanah/
Texas A&M. 2014. Riparian Restoration on Farms. [Internet]. [cited 2015 Feb 10]. Available from: http://bexar-tx.tamu.edu/files/2012/07/Riparian-Restoration-on-Farms.pdf
North State Environmental, et al. 2012. Urban Stream Restoration Cases: Lessons Learned. [Internet]. [cited 2015 Feb 8]. Available from: http://www.aces.edu/natural-resources/water-resources/documents/5ALUrbanStreamCaseStudies.pdf
IMAGES & Captions
Figure 1. Bandalong™ Litter Trap placed in a small creek.
Figure 2. PQC Stream. Eroded banks, polluted waterway, and deep incising have left the stream in an ecological impaired state.
Figure 3. Fairfax, VA. Example of a restored stream that has been reconnected with its floodplain.
Figure 4. Greenwood Creek in Tulalip, WA. Example of possible restoration techniques including reinforced banks and coconut mesh, vegetating with native species, and stream structures such as felled logs for habitat.