On October 14, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley visited an active stream restoration project within the Upper Little Patuxent watershed in Howard County, as part of a tour focused on the health of the Chesapeake Bay. JMT is the designer of this Design-Build project, the first of its kind initiated by the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA). The project, currently under construction by our partner Ecotone, will restore more than 4,000 linear feet of the main stem river and tributaries and create more than three acres of floodplain wetlands to trap excess nutrient and sediment from entering the Bay.  The project will prevent 3,560 pounds of nitrogen, 965 pounds of phosphorus, and 1,254 tons of sediment per year from entering downstream waters. The project is the first step in SHA’s commitment to restore more than 60,000 linear feet of streams in Maryland to reduce pollutants entering the Chesapeake. The Upper Little Patuxent project is expected to be completed in 2015.

Several members of JMT attended the event, joining students from Hollifield Station Elementary Schools, state senators, State Highway Administrator Melinda Peters, SHA Director of Environmental Design Sonal Sanghavi, and more.

At the event, Governor O’Malley noted this $1.7 million stream restoration is just one of thousands of environmental projects that will begin in the next six years as part of a total $600 million funding package.

A press release from the governor’s office reads:

“In Maryland, we’re investing in restoring our Chesapeake Bay for all of those who depend on her for recreation or for a livelihood, and projects such as restoring streams have a direct and immediate positive impact on the bay’s health,” said Governor O’Malley. “We stand on the threshold of a tipping point in which the bay can once again flourish and all of us are partners in reclaiming the Bay.”

“The Chesapeake Bay is an integral part of who we are as Marylanders – our heritage, our economy and our culture,” said U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski, Chairwoman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “These investments in the health and future of the Bay are investments in the communities that depend on the Bay, supporting jobs today and jobs tomorrow. I will continue to fight to protect the Bay, Maryland’s greatest natural resource, and the lives and livelihoods that depend on it.”

“The Chesapeake Bay is an iconic part of Maryland’s culture and an integral part of our economy,” said U.S. Senator Ben Cardin, Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Water & Wildlife Subcommittee. “We’re all in this together. No one source or single sector bears all the blame for degraded water quality in the Bay. But with the support of robust state and federal investments, if we all continue work together, we will see even more progress and leave our children a Chesapeake Bay that is healthier than it is today. A healthy Bay means a healthy Maryland.”

Read the entire press release here.

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