State grant aids cleanup of stream $20,000 is awarded for Longwell Run section

work to start in August

June 03, 1996|By James M. Coram | James M. Coram,SUN STAFF Sun staff writer Donna Engle contributed to this article.

The county will get $20,000 from the state Board of Public Works to help grade and stabilize a 250-foot stretch along Longwell Run in Westminster.

Work is scheduled to begin in August and continue for about 14 months.

The project "will reduce sediment and improve wildlife habitat and water quality," Gov. Parris N. Glendening said in a news release. "This effort will not only benefit Longwell Run, but will also improve the Patapsco River and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay."

The grading and stabilization project is part of a plan to clean the stream over the next four years using federal, state and county money at a cost of more than $600,000 -- $445,000 in the first year alone.

Until recently, cleanup of the stream had been solely the personal mission of Carroll County environmentalist Monroe G. Haines, 73.

Working single-handedly for more than a decade, Haines pulled debris from the stream piece by piece.

His efforts became so highly publicized that Haines received an environmental activism award from then-Gov. William Donald Schaefer and the county received a federal grant to clean the stream.

The state Department of Natural Resources oversees the federal grant, but county employee Laura Moran is project manager.

Like most streams, the biggest problem with Longwell Run is storm-water runoff.

The county expects to address that problem by building a wetland park in the woods next to the county office building on Center Street.

Work on the portion partially funded by the state grant is expected to cost $40,000. The federal government had previously given the county $16,500 for this part of the project. The county added $3,500.

Renewal of Longwell Run "represents a much-needed effort to better manage the impact of man's developmental effort," Commissioner W. Benjamin Brown said in a statement. "We look forward to improving the quality of life within and along the stream's course."

The shallow brook starts near Route 140 and Gorsuch Road and flows northwest to Route 27, where it is joined by a branch that flows north from John Street.

The merged stream then turns northeast where it joins the west branch of the Patapsco River near Old Westminster Road.

Pub Date: 6/03/96

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