Heart of arlington neighborhood association johnson creek update
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Heart of Arlington Neighborhood Association Johnson Creek Update. November 15, 2011. Agenda. Introduction – Pete Jamieson, Director, COA Parks & Recreation Department Discussion of Johnson Creek Federal Project – Amy Archambeau, USACE

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Heart of arlington neighborhood association johnson creek update

Heart of Arlington Neighborhood Association Johnson Creek Update

November 15, 2011



  • Introduction– Pete Jamieson, Director, COA Parks & Recreation Department

  • Discussion of Johnson Creek Federal Project – Amy Archambeau, USACE

  • Environmental / Engineering Challenges & Opportunities – James Thomas, HDR

  • Water Quality & Litter Management Efforts – Bill Brown, COA – Storm Water Executive Manager

Birth of a us army corps of engineers civil works project

Birth of a US Army Corps of Engineers Civil Works Project

Problem Perception

Request for Federal Action

Study of Problem & Report Preparation

Report Review and Approval

Project Authorization

Project Implementation

It takes two to tango

“It Takes Two to Tango”

Local Agency must request a project, be willing to partner with USACE

Local Agency and USACE share costs to:

Conduct study to develop a project

Design project

Build project

When project complete, local agency assumes operation and maintenance responsibilities

Johnson creek recent history 1990 1999

Johnson Creek: Recent History (1990 – 1999)

  • 1990. USACE proposed construction of concrete-lined channels along substantial stretches of Johnson Creek.

  • 1995. The City of Arlington (COA) rejected USACE’s 1990 proposal.

    • Potential negative impact on recreation and economic development

    • Loss of wildlife habitat

  • 1997. COA adopted a more holistic alternative, the Johnson Creek Corridor Plan, to the 1990 USACE proposal.

    • Widely supported by community

    • Funding to implement plan not available

  • 1997 – early 1999. The COA began acquiring flood-prone properties and removing structures near Creek.

Johnson creek recent history 1999 2001

Johnson Creek: Recent History (1999-2001)

  • 1999. USACE study completed,

    • Project footprint established

    • COA-USACE signed agreement for design, plans, and specs to remove flood-prone structures, restore ecosystem

    • 142 structures were identified for removal.

  • 2000. Removal of remaining structures (not previously removed by the COA) begun.

  • 2001. Removal of the structures identified in the 1999 Federal projectwas largely complete. All but three of the flood-prone structures had been removed by yearend.

  • 2001. Design of ecosystem restoration component begun.

Johnson creek recent history 2004 2007

Johnson Creek: Recent History (2004 – 2007)

  • 2004 – 2006. Dallas Cowboys announced move to Arlington

    • Proposal for new stadium approved by citizens

    • Master plan for stadium area and Vision of Conservation Plan published

    • COA suspended further work on 1999 Federal Project

      • Flood prone structures had been acquired, all but 3 demolished

      • Majority of lands for ecosystem restoration had been acquired

  • November 2007. Legislation passed to modify the 1999 Federal project to reflect concepts of Vision of Conservation Plan.

Johnson creek recent history 2008

Johnson Creek: Recent History (2008)

  • 2008. Work by COA and USACE to develop plan compatible with 1999 original authorization and new legislation. Plan Objectives are:

    • Maintain Flood Risk Management benefits gained by 1999 project (buy-outs)

    • Look for ways to stabilize streambanks and reduce sedimentation

    • Improve water quality

    • Restore aquatic and riparian ecosystems in and around Creek

    • Enhance recreational opportunities

  • Document the plan in a Integrated Feasibility Study/ Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

Johnson creek recent history 2008 2009

Johnson Creek: Recent History (2008 – 2009)

  • 2008 - 2009. Document Existing and Future Without Project conditions

    • Comprehensive inventory of conditions in and around the creek:

      • Hydrologic – Amount of water in Creek

      • Hydraulic – What water is doing

      • Geomorphic – How channel may migrate

      • Biologic – Animal and plant life, both desirable and undesirable

    • Identify problem areas – where erosion and deposition occur, bank instability

    • Forecast what is likely to happen if nothing is done

Johnson creek feasibility study

Johnson Creek Feasibility Study

  • 2010 – 2011. New agreement negotiated between COA and USACE to cover study (approx 3 years)

  • Budget and schedule presented to COA City Council

  • Five organizations collaborating: COA, USACE, three consultants.

  • Develop plan for Creek in Federal project areas

  • Identify and fully disclose impacts of plan, both positive and negative

  • Comply with all requirements of National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

Johnson creek project next steps

Johnson Creek Project: Next Steps

  • January 2012: Agreement signed, Study begins

  • August 2012: Complete preliminary exploration of measures to address ecosystem restoration and flood risk management problems and opportunities

  • February 2013: Complete detailed investigations to refine and optimize plan components, determine effects.

  • September 2013: Identify recommended plan (balance benefits against negative impacts).

Project conclusion

Project Conclusion

  • March 2014: Complete project document, Integrated Feasibility Report/Environmental Impact Statement (IFR/EIS)

  • April – October 2014: Final Review Period (both External and Public Reviews)

  • December 2014: Feasibility Study complete

  • If funding available, Design (plans & specs) and Construction would take another 3 – 4 years.

Environmental engineering challenges opportunities

Environmental / Engineering Challenges & Opportunities

  • Channel migration, erosion, and sedimentation

  • Small stabilization projects vs. system approach

  • Exotic plant species

  • Water quality – Bill Brown to cover

Background channel evolution

Background – Channel Evolution

Channel migration

Channel Migration

  • Channel migration is natural

  • Erosion and sedimentation rates in equilibrium = dynamically stable

  • Channel migration rate accelerates with increased flow

  • Channel will adjust to balance flow, slope and sediment transport

Channel migration small project issues

Channel Migration – Small Project Issues

  • Today’s quick fix = future channel obstruction

  • Create scouring conditions

  • Impacts downstream landowners

Johnson Creek, Reach 5

Johnson Creek, Reach 6

Opportunities for stabilization restoration

Opportunities for Stabilization & Restoration

  • Alternative analysis must consider effects to reach and system

  • Reach = segment with similar flow, slope and substrate characteristics

  • Effects include range of items (flow, bank condition, habitat, etc.)

Channel stabilization alternatives

Channel Stabilization Alternatives

Wide Channel Section

  • More land required

  • Larger construction disturbance

  • Requires public control of land (purchase / easement)

  • Lower construction cost per unit

Coffee Creek, Edmond, OK

Channel stabilization alternatives1

Channel Stabilization Alternatives

Narrow Channel Section

  • Less land required

  • Smaller construction area

  • Requires public control of land (purchase / easement)

  • Higher construction cost per unit

Fort Branch, Austin, TX

Exotic invasive species

Exotic & Invasive Species

  • Impact native habitat

  • Tree & shrub species

  • Areas in excess of 3,000 stems / acre

  • Introduced by:

    • Yard waste

    • Flood waters

    • Wildlife

Exotic invasive species1

Exotic & Invasive Species

  • Control is a challenging combination

    • Education

    • Chemical, mechanical & manual control

    • Ongoing maintenance

Project area

Project Area

  • Refer to map



City of arlington stormwater management past present future

City of ArlingtonStormwater ManagementPast, Present, & Future



  • Evolution of Stormwater Management in Arlington

  • Water Quality Background for Johnson Creek

  • Pollution Prevention & Control

Historic problems

Historic Problems

  • Comprehensive land use planning & site design standards did not adequately incorporate watershed and stream protection considerations.

  • No centralized responsibility for stormwater management.

  • Significant funding shortfall for addressing stormwater management.

Arlington watersheds

Arlington Watersheds

Stormwater management

Stormwater Management

  • Stream channels straightened

  • Channels Paved or Piped

  • Collect stormwater and get it away quickly!!!

Watershed drainage change

Watershed Drainage Change

Problem statement

Problem Statement

  • Urban encroachments increase volume and velocity of stormwater runoff entering the streams.

  • Exceeding conveyance and storage capacity leaves stream banks prone to erosion and failure.

Flow changes due to urbanization

Flow Changes due to Urbanization

Heart of arlington neighborhood association johnson creek update

Floodplain After Filling

And/Or Increased Runoff

Channel erosion

Channel Erosion

Erosion problems

Erosion Problems

2005 citizen policy review committee stormwater charge

2005 Citizen Policy Review Committee Stormwater Charge

  • Stormwater Pollution

  • Erosion & Sedimentation

  • Flooding

  • Debris in Streams & Creeks

  • Aging Infrastructure

  • Funding

Summary of the 2005 cprc recommendations

Summary of the 2005 CPRC Recommendations

  • Create a Comprehensive Stormwater Plan

  • Develop Policies for addressing Stormwater Issues

  • Expand Stormwater System Preventative Maintenance Program

  • Address Funding Issues

City response to cprc

City Response to CPRC

  • Retained a consultant to develop a Comprehensive Stream Management Plan

    • Stream inventory

    • Erosion risk identification

  • Addressed Funding Issues

  • Consolidated Stormwater Responsibilities

Stormwater management funding

Stormwater Management Funding

  • October 2007 implemented a 4 year Stormwater Utility Fee adjustment

  • Equalized fees for residential and non-residential properties

  • Based upon impervious area

  • Funds Stormwater Management Administration, Operations, Maintenance, & Capital Projects

Stormwater management administration

Stormwater Management Administration

  • Stormwater Management re-organized under Public Works & Transportation

  • Administration, Operations, Inspections, & Educational Outreach under Stormwater Executive Manager

  • Promote uniform Stormwater Management Vision

Programmatic vision

Programmatic Vision

  • Comprehensive Stormwater Management Program addressing water quality & quantity

  • Establish a program addressing:

    • Administration & Management

    • Maintenance

    • Watershed Planning

    • Public Information & Education

    • Regulatory Enhancements & Guidance

Stream management program

Stream Management Program

  • Stream Reach Inventory

  • Stream Cleaning

    • Initial Stream Reach Maintenance

    • Routine Stream Reach Maintenance

    • Emergency Stream Reach Maintenance

  • Stream Bank Stabilization & Restoration

  • Education Outreach

Changing stormwater management

Changing Stormwater Management

  • Traditional Method

    • Convey stormwater quickly from site to stream

  • New Paradigm

    • Integrate green design

    • View stormwater as a resource

    • Manage stormwater on-site

    • Reduce pollutant loads to water bodies

Water quality

Water Quality

  • City Required to monitor water quality in streams.

  • Cooperate in North Central Texas Regional Stormwater Monitoring Program.

  • Three monitoring locations on Johnson Creek.

    • Johnson Creek at Matlock Road

    • Johnson Creek at Meadowbrook Park

    • Johnson Creek at East Copeland Road

Water quality data

Water Quality Data

  • Data for 17 constituents including BOD, pH, TSS, N, P, & Heavy Metals

  • Data consistent with other Metroplex Urban Streams

  • Johnson Creek does NOT currently appear on the EPA 303(d) list of Impaired Streams

  • Data available from the North Central Texas Council of Governments – Cooperative Wet Weather Monitoring

Stream pollution sources

Stream Pollution Sources

  • Home Vehicle Maintenance

  • Vehicle & Pressure Washing

  • Household Hazardous Wastes

  • Lawn & Garden Care

  • Pet Waste

  • Litter & Dumping

Vehicle maintenance

Vehicle Maintenance

  • Use funnels or pumps to avoid spills

  • Don’t dump used oil and antifreeze in the storm drain

  • Clean up spills

  • Fix leaks

Lawn garden

Lawn & Garden

  • Don’t dump yard waste in the storm sewer or stream.

  • Before fertilizing your lawn, test to soil to determine what is needed. (http://soiltesting.tamu.edu/)

  • Consider composting your grass clippings.

  • Apply materials per instructions.

Pet wastes

Pet Wastes

  • Dispose of Pet Waste Appropriately

    • Scoop the Poop

    • Don’t dump kitty litter in storm drain or creek

    • Don’t dump flea dip solutions into storm drains

Litter dumping

Litter & Dumping

  • Urban drainage systems are designed to take stormwater to the stream. Runoff carries litter.



  • Put trash in appropriate receptacle.

  • Recycle

  • Don’t put your garbage bag in the street gutter.

  • If you see someone dumping in the storm drain or creek, report it:

    • garbage, construction materials, and bulky items to Arlington’s Code Compliance hotline at 817-459-6777.

    • dumping of liquids or spills in creeks and streams to Pollution Prevention Hotline at 817-459-6599.

Thank you

Thank You

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