Views of Campus Creek
photos taken before and after stream restoration
Use the slider bars to adjust views of photos taken before this section of the creek was restored (on left) with photos taken after the restoration build was completed (on right).
Natural wood debris salvaged from the creek banks and furnished from similar sites was used to prevent erosion, increase roughness, create in-stream habitat features for aquatic species, and provide a source of decaying carbon to promote natural biogeochemical processes that contribute to the ecological health of the creek.
Steep, eroded creek banks were carefully graded and matted to reduce bank height ratio and allow natural overflow of banks during flooding events. This design element is one example of floodplain reconnection, which means that the creek bed is now much more like the landscape of the creek’s historic floodplain before this section of UMD’s campus was developed.
A familiar part of Campus Creek to many pedestrians on campus is the bridge behind the School of Public Health. This view shows how the restoration project changed this site to improve tree health so that roots are not sticking out into the space above the creek, reduce potential for scouring of soil from creek banks, and increase opportunity for floodplain vegetation to filter and capture sediment and process nutrients suspended in the creek water.
During storm events, turbulent energy from stormwater flowing into the creek from the outfall is dissipated in the new plunge pool which is nested in a soft bed of sand and wood chips that filter sediment and other particles. Water can percolate through this bed into the rock storage chamber below. This design protects the creek from erosion and filters pollutants from first flush runoff so that they do not harm aquatic life downstream.