Reedy Creek RiverWise Community
Beginning in 2006, the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay has successfully partnered with the Reedy Creek Coalition to develop a holistic stormwater management and habitat improvement program for property owners in the Reedy Creek Watershed. The Reedy Creek Watershed is located in south Richmond along a 3.68 mile creek that experiences heavy flash rates due to urbanization and parts of the creek being channelized. Through the partnership, the Reedy Creek Watershed Protection Program was developed to gather information on homeowner habits and property features as they related to stormwater runoff, water quality habits and wildlife habitat. Volunteers and staff conducted assessments of homeowner properties and provided a personalized plan for implementing best management practices. Other tools for the program were also developed including contractor and volunteer training programs, assessment protocols for non-residential properties, and a financial incentive program that included implementation funds for recommended practices.
To date, over 140 property owners have been successfully engaged. As of December 2013, 58 rain barrels, 23 tree plantings, 35 BayScapes, 17 rain gardens, and 19 pervious surface projects were installed. The stormwater management practices throughout this small watershed resulted in the treatment of over 1 million gallons of stormwater per year.
The Alliance then focused on reaching larger property owners in the Reedy Creek watershed. As of December 2013, we have conducted four commercial assessments. Two of those commercial properties committed to working with us to install recommended practices. A total of six rain gardens, 8,400 square feet of BayScapes, a 600 gallon cistern and 7,660 square feet of lawn area was stabilized.
Workshops focusing on BayScapes, native plants, rain barrels, rain gardens and watershed tours take place with regular frequency. Those tours have led to new partnerships with local material providers, resulting in more innovative ways to implement practices and bring down costs to further incentivize practices.
As a result of our successes and lessons learn the Alliance embarked upon developing the Chesapeake RiverWise Communities program that provides guidance and resources on implementing similar projects and will be available to watershed organizations and local governments throughout the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Please be sure to check out Alliance work in the Bellemeade’s Goodes Creek and Upham Brook.
This Spring 2014, the Alliance is partnering with the City of Richmond to improve stormwater management on the property of library’s local branch. Stay tuned for updates and pictures!
To sign up for a RiverWise Assessment please click HERE to fill out a pre-assessment questionnaire.