Lambert Creek discharges into Vadnais Lake, the final impoundment reservoir containing the potable water supply for the city of St. Paul and eight nearby suburbs. Monitoring data indicates high nutrient levels and the creek is listed by the State as having high bacterial levels. In-stream work along Lambert Creek has been maximized with restoration improvements achieving nutrient load reduction. The next step to further improve water quality is to concentrate on restoration efforts on a subwatershed level.
Lambert Creek is wholly within the Vadnais Lake Area Water Management Area. Vadnais Lake is the drinking water reservoir for the City of St. Paul and surrounding communities. Lambert Creek has elevated bacteria and nutrient levels and water quality in Vadnais Lake will not improve unless there is a reduction in the phosphorus loading from Lambert Creek.
The Kohlman Lake nutrient reduction study identified a major source of phosphorus loading from the impervious areas like roads, roofs and parking lots within the watershed.. Within this area, one major land use feature stands out - Maplewood Mall. Retrofitting the Mall parking areas to infiltrate at least one inch of stormwater runoff will result in a large reduction in phosphorus to Kohlman Creek and the lake.
Friends of the Mississippi is using this appropriation to restore and enhance approximately 163 acres of permanently protected prairie and forest lands in Dakota, Washington, Ramsey, and Hennepin counties in order increase the amount of high quality habitat within designated conservation corridors. Specific activities will include updating management plans, soil preparation, prescribed burning, native vegetation installation, woody encroachment removal, and invasive species control.
These funds will enable Great River Greening to restore approximately 121 acres of permanently protected forests, savanna, prairie, and wetland habitat and 0.18 miles of shoreland habitat while engaging hundreds of volunteers in the stewardship of the Metropolitan area's remaining natural areas. Specific activities include invasive species control, seeding/planting, prescribed burning, and other associated activities.
Through a long standing partnership, this project will continue to implement a process formalized with a 2010 Clean Water Fund Grant to conduct stormwater sub-watershed assessments. The goal of the sub-watershed assessments is to accelerate water quality improvements by focusing efforts in high priority areas. Specifically, subwatershed assessments are a tool used to identify the most effective urban stormwater conservation practice by location.
With this final report, Metro Big Rivers Phase 2 is complete and significantly exceeded its original acreage targets of protecting, restoring and enhancing priority wildlife habitat within the three big rivers corridors in the Metropolitan Urbanizing Area. Specifically:
* Metro Big Rivers 2 planned to protect 733 acres, but actually protected 1,430 acres.
* Metro Big Rivers 2 planned to restore 15 acres and enhance 135 acres, but actually restored 15 acres and enhanced 178 acres.
This project will create a high accuracy elevation dataset - critical for effectively planning and implementing water quality projects - for the state of Minnesota using LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) and geospatial mapping technologies. Although some areas of the state have been mapped previously, many counties remain unmapped or have insufficient or inadequate data. This multi-year project, to be completed in 2012, is a collaborative effort of Minnesota's Digital Elevation Committee and partners with county surveyors to ensure accuracy with ground-truthing.
The Highland Ravine is a large bluff area in central St. Paul that has become highly eroded due to hydrologic changes associated with urban development. During rain and snow melt events, water and sediment moves down slope onto private residential properties causing significant flooding and sedimentation. In addition, sediment-laden water from the gullies goes into the St. Paul storm sewer system which discharges, untreated, directly to the Mississippi River.
Bald Eagle Lake is a popular recreational lake known for its fishery on the Metropolitan Council's Priority Lakes List. The lake is negatively impacted by excess nutrients and restoring its water quality is a local priority.
This project will collect stormwater runoff from an approximately 900 acre area and re-use it to irrigate an existing golf course. This innovative project will provide a multitude of environmental benefits for Bald Eagle Lake including significant runoff volume reduction, groundwater recharge and phosphorus load reduction.