This project targets retrofit stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) on public land to assist partnering Local Government Units (LGUs) achieve water quality goals identified in local stormwater plans. The Dakota County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) provides technical assistance and distributes Clean Water Funding (CWF) to leverage local funding through its time-proven Stormwater Retrofit Partnership (Partnership) cost share program.
This project is a continuation of the Dakota County Community Initiative, which has received Clean Water Funds in 2012 and 2013. It will provide cost share funding to organizations and associations who voluntarily construct medium sized water quality best management practices (BMPs) in Dakota County.
The Faribault Soil and Water Conservation District will provide mini-grants to conservation-conscious community organizations who voluntarily construct best management practices that provide storage and treatment of stormwater runoff at its source.
This project will use the Dakota County Soil and Water Conservation District's existing Conservation Initiative Funding program to provide technical assistance and monetary incentives for targeted, medium-sized projects such as raingardens, bioinfiltration, biofiltration, bioswales, shoreline stabilizations, and other best management practices (BMPs). Project proposals will be solicited from faith based organizations, homeowner associations, school organizations, lake associations, and others that own or manage large areas of land.
The Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) is currently being developed for the Minnesota River-Headwaters. Part of the WRAPS and subsequent implementation addresses targeting locations for specific projects (e.g., conservation practices) which are expected to results in measurable water quality benefits for impaired lakes and rivers. Protection strategies are also developed to maintain water quality.
As part of the Dakota County Transportation Department's highway 78 road reconstruction project, the Vermillion River Watershed Joint Powers Organization is partnering with Dakota County to install a nitrate treatment practice on a tributary to the South Branch Vermillion River adjacent to the road. The South Branch Vermillion River subwatershed is the highest nitrate loading subwatershed in the Vermillion River Watershed and is a significant contributor to contaminated drinking water in the eastern portion of the watershed.
The purpose of this program is to engage community groups for the installation of community accessible rain gardens and other water quality best management practices in Ramsey County. The goal is to install 6-12 storm water best management projects that will help protect and improve water quality of surrounding lakes. The installed practices will reduce an estimated 10 acre-feet of storm water runoff, 9 pounds of phosphorous, and 3 tons of sediment annually. Significant measurable outputs, with development of long-term partnerships, are primary objectives for this program.
The Plymouth Creek Restoration Project will improve water quality in Plymouth Creek and Medicine Lake, the creek's primary receiving water. The project will reduce total phosphorus and suspended sediment in Plymouth Creek and Medicine Lake stemming from streambank erosion. Streambank erosion is a common source of pollution, particularly in developed landscapes where flows in streams are considered flashy and can easily scour unprotected and disturbed streambanks.
This project engages private property owners including non-profits, businesses, and institutions, in the Harrison Neighborhood of Near North Minneapolis to install storm water best management practices. The BMPs will reduce pollution in Bassett Creek including chlorides and bacteria, for which the creek is impaired. The primary focus is on Glenwood Avenue, a focal point in the community and a highly impervious area.
Installation of a 43,000 sf infiltration gallery in Becker Park in the City of Crystal to infiltrate 0.5 inches of runoff from a 147 acre currently untreated mixed use subwatershed with 51% impervious surface. The project will reduce total phosphorus to Impaired Water Upper Twin Lake by 118 pounds annually, and reduce street flooding on Bass Lake Road (Hennepin County Road 10).
With limited funds and limited staff time available for targeting critical service areas and implementing Best Management Practices (BMPs), Geographic Information System (GIS)-based tools that pinpoint locations where BMPs will have the highest effectiveness are increasingly important. The Blue Earth County/SWCD Watershed Implementation Targeting project will utilize LiDAR topographic data to determine areas of high importance for BMP implementation. The county is located in the Blue Earth, LeSueur, Watonwan and Middle Minnesota watersheds where there is a high density of impaired waters.
This project will conduct Inventory and Inspection of four drainage ditches in Blue Earth County: JD116, CD5, CD86 and CD56. The inventory of these drainage ditches is important in order to identify where erosion, sediment and/or nutrients contribute substantially to water quality degradation. The project will also prioritize sites for future side inlet control, buffer strip implementation, and/or storage and treatment implementation.
Once thought to have an essentially inexhaustible groundwater supply, Minnesotans are now realizing our rates of use are regionally unsustainable. Recent advanced modeling by the MN DNR and Metropolitan Council of aquifer supplies, in conjunction with predicted demand, indicate the major metropolitan area aquifers are currently subject to extraction rates that exceed recharge. Simply stated, we are mining our groundwater.
The Carver County Planning and Water Management Department (PWM) has an active well sealing cost share program. Following the adoption of the updated County Groundwater Plan in February of 2016, the Carver County Board of Commissioners moved to accelerate the program to encourage landowners to seal abandoned wells. Carver County is looking to supplement existing funds, as demand is expected to increase. With this additional funding, it is the goal of Carver County PWM to seal an additional 15 wells county wide.
Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District (RWMWD) will improve water quality in Casey Lake and ultimately Kohlman Lake through the installation of approximately 25 rain gardens on priority properties identified as part of the Casey Lake Urban Stormwater Retrofit Assessment completed by Ramsey Conservation District (RCD) in 2011.
The City of Minnetonka and its residents highly value the water resources within the community, which include approximately ten lakes, four streams, and hundreds of wetlands. The City has been progressive in protecting these resources through policies and management strategies, and now wants to increase their on-the-ground efforts in protecting and improving water quality. The City hopes to conduct targeted watershed assessments for fourteen selected priority water bodies to identify and optimize the type and locations of Best Management Practices (BMPs) to be installed.
Sediment and water quality issues are local priorities within the Thief River and Red Lake River watersheds, which have their confluence in the city of Thief River Falls. The 1W1P effort underway in the Red Lake River Watershed will identify opportunities for projects and practices that are targeted and result in measurable water quality benefits throughout the watershed using PTMApp.
The City of Forest Lake will install four biofiltration basins and a wet sedimentation pond to treat stormwater prior to discharge into Clear Lake. Clear Lake is identified as a priority lake within the Rice Creek Watershed District's (RCWD) Watershed Management Plan and does not meet the nutrient goals established by the RCWD. Mid-summer algae blooms are common and occasionally severe enough to impact recreation.
The Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District (District) has determined that large impervious sites (like churches, commercial sites, and schools) are more economical for stormwater management retrofit projects than distributed small projects along roadways. The District began assessing church sites for retrofit opportunities in 2013 and will continue this effort in 2014. Church congregations have been receptive to partnering with the watershed district.
This project is the ecological restoration of 1,400 feet of Shingle Creek, an Impaired Water for low dissolved oxygen and impaired biota, in Brooklyn Center and Brooklyn Park. The Shingle Creek Impaired Biota and Dissolved Oxygen Total Maximum Daily Load requires sediment oxygen demand load reductions and establishes restoration design standards to enhance habitat that will be incorporated into this project.
The Cottageville Park Water Quality Protection and Stream Restoration Project was developed to meet the goals of the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District and the City of Hopkins, including; water resource management, channel stabilization, stream enhancement, riparian corridor improvements, open space creation, park development, and revitalization. The project achieves these goals through implementation of the following:
Numerous County ditch systems in Pennington County end at a natural drainage prior to outleting into a river or other watercourse and these outlets can be in a very erosive state. The goal of this project is to inventory these systems to determine needs and prioritize projects for implementation.
Fish Lake is 238 acres and does not meet state water quality standards due to excessive nutrients. Through the Total Maximum Daily Load study, a recommendation was made to treat the lake with alum to achieve the state's water quality standards. The goal of this project is to reduce the phosphorus load to Fish Lake by 310 pounds per year and meet the needed phosphorus reduction goal. The project will be completed as a partnership between the Elm Creek Water Management Commission, Three Rivers Park District, the City of Maple Grove, and The Fish Lake Area Resident's Association.
The Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District (RWMWD) is responsible for the protection and restoration of the water quality of 20 lakes and 5 creeks within its boundary. Permit and voluntary cost share programs serve to slowly redevelop the watershed to the benefit of these water bodies. However, additional projects are needed- not only to implement green infrastructure in areas that need extra restoration and protection, but also to foster new relationships between citizens and the RWMWD to rally together in a common goal to the benefit of their water resources.
The goal of this project is to adapt and expand the existing successful Master Water Stewards program to engage citizens and catalyze clean water projects in suburban, exurban and rural communities of Washington and southern Chisago Counties. As part of this project, 20 citizens' stewards will be recruited and trained to work in partnership with the Washington Conservation District and area watershed management organizations to implement clean water projects in identified priority areas.
The Faribault County Soil and Water Conservation District Drainage Engineer will inventory public drainage ditches to identify priority systems and areas where erosion, sediment, and nutrients contribute to water quality degradation. Sites identified for potential side inlet control, buffer strip need, or water storage will be prioritized for landowner contact and follow through by seeking external funding opportunities.
Working with a consultant, a current online database to manage public drainage systems will be enhanced and a corresponding mobile inspection app will be developed to facilitate drainage compliance and improve inspection planning. With these improvements, a long-term, comprehensive, GIS-compatible database will be in place to help plan, collect, document, summarize, and analyze system condition, repair needs, and violations with the overall goal of protecting and improving water quality.
Forest Lake Area Schools, the Rice Creek Watershed District and the City of Forest Lake have partnered to develop the first phase of a long-term stormwater reuse and education program starting. This project will result in stormwater pond retrofits and construction of new irrigation infrastructure to reduce potable groundwater usage by over 4 million gallons per year. Further, educational curriculum will be developed to integrate the reuse technology and water conservation concepts. Clear Lake is an important regional resource and boasts a very active lake association.
This project will install an iron enhanced sand filter (IESF) to restore water quality in Golden Lake. Golden Lake is within a fully developed area of the Twin Cities, surrounded by residential land use, and the focal point of a city park. The IESF will achieve 11% of the phosphorus reduction (21 lbs/yr) required for Golden Lake to meet State water quality standards, as identified in the approved Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL).
The Greater Blue Earth River Basin Alliance is a Joint Powers Organization consisting of nine member Counties and Soil and Water Conservation Districts encompassing the Blue Earth, Le Sueur and Watonwan River Watersheds. This project will enable the Alliance to continue to provide staff and add capacity in the areas of technical assistance, education and outreach.
The Washington Conservation District (WCD) will use this program to engage homeowner associations (HOAs) within Washington County. The project will identify methods and opportunities for HOAs to commit to clean water management practices and prioritize stormwater retrofit projects within partnering HOAs. Project goals include engaging at least 20 HOAs within the county and conducting 2-3 focus group sessions with property management companies and HOAs to identify opportunities for and barriers to adoption of clean water practices.
Faribault County Soil and Water Conservation District will develop two watershed plans using charettes, an intensive planning process used to engage citizens, conservation agencies, and others to collaborate on a vision for the development of a drainage watershed scale plan. The process allows landowners, producers, businesses, townships, cities and the county to partake in a comprehensive plan directly relating back to concerns and solutions related to surface water and nonpoint source pollution.
Past and current monitoring data has shown Ramsey County's Lambert Creek has high levels of total phosphorus (TP), anywhere from 0.14 mg/L to 0.30 mg/L, which is above the proposed State standard of 0.10 mg/L for streams in the Central Region.
Lake Augusta and Sunfish Lake are deep lakes located in the Lower Mississippi River Watershed Management Organization. Both lakes are approximately 40 acres in size and surrounded by watersheds with moderate to low imperviousness. Both lakes are included on the MPCA's 303(d) list as impaired for aquatic recreation due to excessive nutrients. Lake Augusta and Sunfish Lake were included in a watershed restoration and protection strategies (WRAPS) study and total maximum daily load (TMDL) performed from 2012 to 2014.
Ensuring natural resource practitioners are applying state-of-the-art approaches is the best way to achieve optimum Best Management Practice (BMP) selection, design, and placement in the landscape, thereby maximizing Clean Water Fund (CWF) benefits. To that end, it is critical to train new staff, create modeling protocols for new BMPs, refine and calibrate models, and test ever-advancing modeling applications.