|Playground to be replaced with a rain garden|
While the Pennypack Trust has not yet undertaken any projects in the Pennypack watershed, our sister organization, the Tookany-Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership (TTF) is going gangbusters on a small, heavily urbanized stream located just over the divide from the Pennypack watershed.
The stream, Jenkintown Creek, rises in a play area on the grounds of Abington Friends School. The school is very interested in improving water quality in this small headwaters stream - both to be a good citizen, and also to use the restoration work as an educational resource for its students. On July 23, several of the local watershed organizations partnering in this collaborative effort took a tour of the work that has been completed on the school's property.
In the image at the beginning of this post, my friend and colleague Julie Slavet, director of the TTF, explained that the school is going to replace the existing grassy playground - the very beginning of the stream - with a rain garden that will capture runoff and allow it to percolate into the soil.
|Newly planted riparian buffer. The stream is flowing down the center between deer exclosures.|
|Existing riparian buffer cleared of vines and expanded with new plantings|
|At the edge of playing fields|
|Parking lot runoff|
Obviously, to make a difference in the overall Delaware River watershed, these types of projects will have to be repeated thousands of times over on countless small tributary streams. But this is a great first step, and it serves as a model for others to emulate.