Possum Point Road:
What's Next for Possum Point Road Residents?
While the problems from the Southbridge/Swann Creek development remain unsolved, there is some optimism that the involvement of state officials combined with the County's new review of the approved plans will finally lead to action. After five years, citizens like Leo Sentiger are not convinced they can believe anything until it happens, but their commitment to these issues remains strong.
Possum Point residents will need to follow through and continue efforts to stay informed about progress on commitments made at the June 17 meeting with Prince William County Public Works, the Town of Dumfries and the Virginia Dept. of Conservation and Recreation. At this stage in the game, questions about the viability of mitigation tend to enter the discussion, including discussion of the trade offs between letting the area "heal itself" (doing nothing) versus needs to disturb the land to fix the problems. Residents will need assistance understanding and evaluating the recommendations. Email us at alliance(at)pwconserve.org if you can help.
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What's Next for Quantico Creek?
From coast to coast, citizens are growing concerned about local creeks and streams, rivers and reservoirs. Here in Northern Virginia, the situation is much the same.
Sometimes particular waterways attract broad attention and citizens band together to protect and restore the area. "Friends of" groups are often formed. These groups help connect like-minded people and provide a platform for needed changes. Many people working together to clean up waterways have greater opportunities than individuals working alone.
Currently interest in a Friends of Quantico Creek is rising. Citizens from Possum Point Road and beyond are growing increasingly concerned about recent degradation of the creek's tidal area. These people are looking for ways to protect and restore Quantico Creek today and over time.
One group that has been working to protect a particular creek is the Friends of Little Rocky Run in Fairfax County. Founding member Ned Foster has offered to attend our Green Plate Breakfast on September 17 to talk about where to begin, opportunities, challenges and successes. Click here for more information on the Green Plate Breakfast.
During their site visit to Possum Point Road on June 17, DCR representatives talked about the important role citizen groups play in watershed restoration. They emphasized that impacts to Quantico Creek must be solved through a seperatem citizen initiated effort targeted specifically at cleaning up Quantico Creek.
DCR representatives also suggested that completing a watershed management plan for Quantico Creek was a good place to start. State and federal agencies throughout Virginia are encouraging watershed management planning. Although many localities are slow to respond, Fairfax County has taken significant steps to both complete and implement watershed management plans. The Little Hunting Creek Watershed Management Plan, which the Fairfax Board approved in February 2005 is one example. This plan includes a myriad of projects endorsed by residents such as stream restoration; rain barrel sales; riparian vegetation buffer restoration; water quality improvements to existing stormwater facilities; and recommended modifications to the County Code and other supporting documents. Fairfax County estimates that the $30.4 million will be needed to implement the plan over a 25-year period.
It is one thing to have a watershed management plan and another to implement the recommendations. Some fixes, such as stream corridor restorations and clean ups, can be accomplished through citizen-based activities. Others require government support and can involve significant funding support. In Prince William, for example, the county was not able to ensure that the Southbridge/Swann's Creek site plan was implemented correctly and it is easy to understand that implementation of a watershed management plan would require strong citizen support.
Read the News about Possum Point Road and Quantico Creek