Pike Creek at Independence School Stream Restoration
After Biohabitats’ successful restoration of Pike Creek at the Three Little Bakers Golf Course, Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) obtained funding to restore trout habitat and reduce erosion and sedimentation on another reach of Pike Creek. The reach had experienced severe bank erosion and channel instability caused by increased storm flows from impervious surfaces in the watershed. The instability had compromised the stream’s aquatic habitat.
Using natural channel design techniques, Biohabitats designed the restoration of 3,100 linear feet of Pike Creek and 600 linear feet of an unnamed tributary. The design provided the plan form, cross section and profile necessary for the creek to remain stable. It also reestablished aquatic habitat, particularly for trout, and created floodplain wetlands to provide plant diversity and reconnection to the stream. Factors complicating the restoration included roads, sewer lines, storm drain outfalls, utility poles and mature trees.
The Independence School was instrumental in the project by not only allowing the restoration of the creek on their property, but also supporting the creation of four acres of wetland (forested and emergent) on fallow ground between school facilities and the creek.
Biohabitats worked closely with the construction contractor to balance cut and fill between the stream restoration and the wetland creation to keep costs within DNREC’s budget.