Linville Creek Watershed Assessment & Stream Restoration
This project was started in 2015 with a Technical Assistance (TA) Grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) to conduct a watershed assessment to develop a prioritization ranking for water quality projects within the developed area of the Linville Creek watershed, which is a listed impaired water body for bacteria and benthic (sediment) standards.
The Linville Creek Stream Restoration Project was the most highly ranked project from the assessment. The project will restore approximately 1,150 linear feet of Linville creek and 210 linear feet of an unnamed tributary to Linville creek within heritage park located in the Town of Broadway, Virginia. Restoration on Linville Creek will start just downstream of Turner Avenue Bridge and continue to the baseball field within Heritage Park. The project is being undertaken for TMDL compliance and water quality improvement specifically sediment and nutrient reductions.
Currently Linville Creek is incised and entrenched lacking both floodplain connection and available depositional areas to and transport the large incoming sediment supply. Excessive fine sediments have built up within the channel from the large supply being produced by the agriculturally dominated watershed. Linville Creek is actively widening and creating new inner floodplain benches in select areas especially downstream where multiple trees are being undermined and posing risks to increased flooding from debris jams and loss to baseball field’s playable area. The bed form and flow diversity of the tributary have been impacted by erosive stormwater flows.
With funding through the Stormwater Local Assistance Fund (SLAF) and NFWF Small Watershed Grant Program, Ecosystem Services created a restoration approach for the main stem of Linville Creek that will increase available flood prone area and improve the channel’s sediment transport competency and power. This will improve the channel’s ability to move the large supply of fine sediment through the channel and deposit onto available planted areas for trapping and nutrient processing. In addition to work in the stream, Ecosystem Services designed a food forest and a native riparian planting plan for the stream banks, adjacent meadow, and riparian buffer.
Restoration on the tributary will involve channel grading and excavation and the installation of constructed riffles with embedded woody material, and log drop structures to improve bed form and flow diversity. Scour pools in conjunction with stable channel geometry will provide energy dissipation during storm flows and areas for retention and nutrient processing during base flows.
- Assess the Urban Limit of the Linville Creek Watershed
- Create a MCDA Tool to Prioritize Work Areas
- Provide Technical Grant Writing Assistance
- Water Quality Improvement
- Riparian Food Forest Planting
- Invasive Species Removal
- Create Experiential Educational Opportunities for Local Students
- Engage Regional Partners to Create a Regional Model for Restoration