William Penn Foundation 2015 Grants for Upstream Suburban Philadelphia Cluster Projects

Watershed restoration projects along Wissahickon and Tookany Creeks are receiving funding under the second round of the William Penn Foundation’s Delaware River Watershed Initiative. Awardees include the Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association, Upper Gwynedd Township, and the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership.

Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership (TTF):

TTF received $129,850 for two projects on Jenkintown Creek. The first project will expand on Phase 1 restoration work already initiated along the Creek’s headwaters at Abington Friends School. The Phase 1 work (a riparian buffer and rain garden) will be supplemented by Phase 2 restoration including a bioretention area, meadow, buffer, stream bank stabilization, and a second rain garden below the Abington Monthly Meeting parking lot. The restoration work is being incorporated into the Friends’ School science curriculum and broader community watershed education.

Jenkintown Creek Riparian Plantings at Abington Friends School (PEC)

Jenkintown Creek Riparian Plantings at Abington Friends School (PEC)

TTF also received funding for stream bank restoration, buffer and vernal pool installation at McKinley Elementary School further downstream on Jenkintown Creek. TTF and partners are exploring additional projects along this Tacony Creek tributary on larger parcels (e.g. Alverthorpe Park and Abington Art Center) that offer both stream restoration and green infrastructure project opportunities. Monitoring and modeling by Temple and Villanova Universities is also being conducted to help demonstrate how restoration focused on a headwater reach can “move the needle” on water quality improvements.

Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association (WVWA):

WVWA received $190,000 for a stream restoration project along the PECO Right of Way in the main-stem headwaters area of Wissahickon Creek. The grant award will be used to launch a flood plain reconnection project to address eroded stream banks and aquatic life impairments found in the stream reach. The goal of the project is to re-grade the stream to reconnect it to the flood plain, allowing for inundations that store/infiltrate water during high flow conditions. This Phase 1 funding will be used to create concept and construction drawings for the restoration of 4,300 linear feet of the creek including three flood plain connections/inundations, with more detailed design drawings and permit applications for approximately 1,800 linear feet within this reach.

Stream impairments in main-stem Wissahickon headwaters (by WVWA)

Stream impairments in main-stem Wissahickon headwaters (by WVWA)

Upper Gwynedd Township Projects:

Upper Gwynedd Township received funding to support 4 projects in the Wissahickon Creek headwaters area. Project summaries prepared by Gregory Duncan of T&M Associates, a Township consulting engineer, are as follows:

1-Riparian buffer restoration [Grannery Lane]

Project Concept & Description: Proposed along this township-owned property is riparian buffer restoration near Grannery Lane along the Wissahickon Creek.

Output measures: Water quality, habitat restoration

2-Bio-retention facility [Grannery Lane]

Project Concept & Description: This proposed project is in concert with the above riparian buffer restoration along Grannery Lane. It includes the construction of a bioretention area in-line with the Wissahickon Creek. Contributing drainage areas include adjacent residential development as well as roadway drainage.

Output measures: Water quality, volume control, rate control

3-Raingarden [Ivy Lane]

Project Concept & Description: This proposed project includes the construction of a raingarden near Ivy Lane along the Wissahickon Creek. Contributing drainage areas include adjacent residential development as well as roadway drainage.

Output measures: Water quality, volume control, rate control

4-Constructed Wetland [Sumneytown Pike]

Project Concept & Description: The proposed project includes the construction of a wetland near Sumneytown Pike along the Wissahickon Creek. Contributing drainage areas include residential development as well as roadway drainage.

Output measures: Water quality, volume control, rate control, habitat restoration

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