The Diamondback reported last week, in a bizarrely similar pair of articles, that the Michael Company (with many development projects in the area) donated nearly $250,000 to the Anacostia Watershed Society to repair and prevent further erosion on Paint Branch Creek. The creek begins north of College Park in the Beltsville Agricultural Research Station and runs directly behind the west side of Route 1 starting at Jiffy Lube and continuing on until it passes under the road at UMD’s North Gate. The stream and its constantly eroding banks make for narrow lots and uncertain conditions for developers seeking the build multistory condos and office buildings on the streamside of Route 1. State Sen. Giannetti estimated the total effort would take $1.5 million and is asking for $250,000 from the university to install rocks, retention ponds, and retaining walls to slow the flow of the water. Similar efforts are already underway around campus.
The erosion is a natural process but it is hastened by impermeable, unforested surfaces (like agriculture and parking lots) that quickly channel storm water into the creek. You may have noticed this around the University View after a major storm.
>9/7/06 Diamondback “Paint Branch Creek to get funds”
>9/5/06 Diamondback “Developer contributes to stream restoration“