Chesapeake Bay Trust helps St. Anne’s School of Annapolis with rain garden

| June 19, 2017
Rams Head

St. Anne’s School makes a splash with their newly-constructed rain garden, a project led by the South River Federation and funded through the Anne Arundel Watershed Protection and Restoration Program (WPRP) and the Chesapeake Bay Trust (Trust).  The purpose of the project, which involved students, teachers, school parents, South River Federation volunteers, and the local construction firm Environmental Quality Resources (EQR), is to direct rainwater from the school’s roof into the rain garden. The rainwater can then slowly soak back into the ground, exactly as called for by the WPRP, the goal of which is to reduce the amount of rainwater and the pollutants it carries from entering Anne Arundel County waterways during and after storm events. The large rain garden will not only help to reduce runoff but will benefit natural wildlife through the native grasses, ferns, shrubs, and trees planted in and around the garden.  Teachers will be able to use this garden as a teaching tool and students will learn to be good stewards to our environment.

To watch the students’ faces as their project works, as stormwater is carried away from a ravine and prevented from harming our streams, is pure joy,” said Dr. Jana Davis, executive director of the Chesapeake Bay Trust. “The Trust is thrilled to partner with the County to enable a wide variety of schools, homeowners’ associations, faith-based organizations, and other local nonprofit organizations to accomplish measurable, visible improvements that improve our waterways and improve our communities.”

Building on the success of projects like St. Anne’s School, the Anne Arundel WPRP and the Trust recently announced just over $1 million in additional funding for similar projects, affording other local watershed groups and non-profit organizations to take the lead on community-driven projects, build capacity for future work, and contribute to the County’s water quality goals. Faith-based organizations continue to carry the mission forward in this round of awards including the United Church of Christ in Annapolis, which will receive funding support to retrofit their stormwater pond and create a stormwater swale that will be planted with native trees and shrubs. Community and neighborhood groups have also joined the cause including the Berrywood Community on Cattail Creek in Severna Park, which will receive funding support to improve the health of the headwaters of the creek.

“This time of year, especially for Anne Arundel residents, many of us are thinking about getting on or in or near the water,” said County Executive Steven Schuh.  “We are working hard at the County level, with our nonprofit partners and so many committed community leaders like these grantees, to meet our goals to restore our rivers and streams.”

The full list of awardees of the Anne Arundel County Watershed Restoration Grant Program include:

Bacon Ridge Groundwater Recharge Micro-Best Management Practice (BMP) and Outfall Restoration

Grant Amount: $169,900

To restore piped outfalls, reduce stream bank erosion, and protect downstream habitat in the South River watershed. (Grantee organization: South River Federation.)

 

Berrywood Community Cattail Creek Restoration

Grant Amount: $355,549

To reduce stream bank erosion and capture and filter stormwater runoff in a neighborhood in Severna Park, Maryland in the Magothy River Watershed. (Grantee organization: Anne Arundel County Watershed Stewards Academy.)

 

Turnbull Estates Bioretention and Living Shoreline Project

Grant Amount: $86,665

To implement a living shoreline project and capture and filter stormwater runoff in a neighborhood in Edgewater in the South River watershed. (Grantee organization: South River Federation.)

 

Twin Harbors Living Shoreline Project

Grant amount: $377,100

To implement a living shoreline project and capture and filter stormwater runoff in a neighborhood in Arnold in the Magothy River watershed. (Grantee organization: South River Federation.)

 

United Church of Christ Vegetated Swale and Pond Retrofit

Grant Amount: $30,000

To restore and enhance an existing stormwater pond and capture and filter stormwater runoff at a faith-based organization in the South River watershed. (Grantee organization: South River Federation.)

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