Major Stream Restoration Project Begins

Posted on: August 19th, 2015 by Leslie_Zucker

A mas­sive hill­s­lope bor­der­ing the Stony Clove Creek in the Town of Hunter is active­ly erod­ing and con­tribut­ing sed­i­ment to the stream. The AWSMP is sup­port­ing a major stream restora­tion project at the site about one mile north of Lanesville on NY-214. The project uses the last of fed­er­al Emer­gency Water­shed Pro­tec­tion funds avail­able for fix­ing streams bad­ly dam­aged by Trop­i­cal Storm Irene. The repairs cov­er 2,000 feet of stream. Con­struc­tion will run from August-Octo­ber, 2015.

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The Stony Clove is heav­i­ly clogged with sed­i­ment and woody debris at the project site. The stream runs through a nar­row val­ley flanked by two large, fail­ing hill­slopes cov­ered in tilt­ed trees and slump­ing clay and sand-filled banks. Large bars of sed­i­ment deposit­ed in the chan­nel by Irene are forc­ing water toward the vul­ner­a­ble stream banks.

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Cur­rent­ly, the site is choked with inva­sive species and the chan­nel braids through storm debris with lit­tle pock­et water or shad­ed habi­tat for fish.

The project will restore a sin­gle chan­nel and the ripar­i­an veg­e­ta­tion need­ed to shade the stream. Sed­i­ment piled in the chan­nel will be incor­po­rat­ed into the stream bed and banks. Flood­plain bench­es will bor­der the new­ly shaped chan­nel to fur­ther dis­si­pate the ener­gy of fast flows.

A replanted floodplain bench on Warner Creek immediately after construction.

A replant­ed flood­plain bench on Warn­er Creek imme­di­ate­ly after con­struc­tion.

 

Rock “vanes” will angle into the stream bed to deflect water away from banks. Some erod­ing banks will be sta­bi­lized with rock. Even­tu­al­ly, replant­ed stream­side veg­e­ta­tion will fur­ther hold the banks.

The project will cost $1.8 mil­lion to con­struct. Total project cost is over $2 mil­lion includ­ing design and sur­vey. The Town of Hunter is spon­sor­ing the project, but the Nat­ur­al Resources Con­ser­va­tion Ser­vice, which admin­is­ters the Emer­gency Water­shed Pro­tec­tion fund, and the New York City Depart­ment of Envi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion will cov­er all of the project’s cost.

Kingston Equip­ment Rental, Inc.-Baker Broth­ers Exca­vat­ing out of West Hur­ley will con­struct the project, which was designed by con­sult­ing firm Milone & MacB­room, Inc. About 13 stream­side landown­ers sup­port­ed the project to halt the march of erod­ing banks toward their prop­er­ty.

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