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Four Mile Run: A stream restored from dirty ditch to sparkling waters

Posted on Sep 29,2017
Filed Under News , Community,
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Neighbors and elected leaders gathered beneath a blazing midday sun Saturday to cut a ceremonial ribbon on the stream's restoration.

By Dick Uliano

ARLINGTON. VA.
- Large stones and slabs of concrete have been replaced by native plants and wildflowers, which help cleanse the flowing waters of Four Mile Run separating Arlington and Alexandria.

Neighbors and elected leaders gathered beneath a blazing midday sun Saturday to cut a ceremonial ribbon on the stream’s restoration.

“What a beautiful day,” exclaimed Libby Garvey, member of the Arlington County Board. “People love to come down here. It makes people feel happy, it makes people feel good.”

A section of the waterway, along a hiking and biking trail, has been returned to its natural state following a yearlong construction project. Large stones known as “riprap” in flood control systems were removed from the stream’s banks.

The Army Corps of Engineers provided the much-needed flood control system in the 1970s to keep the beleaguered citizens of Arlandria dry.

“The place, it just looked like a concrete and rock ditch,” said Liz Birnbaum, who helped lead a joint Alexandria-Arlington citizen drive to restore Four Mile Run.

“What we’re trying to do now is keep the flood control capacity, but at the same time make it a place that people want to come to, more than the bikers riding through,” said Birnbaum. “We think this is a place a family should picnic, people should just enjoy walking along the stream and also improve the wildlife in the area.”

Black-eyed Susans, goldenrod and bee balm are among the native plants returned to the stream’s banks.

A viewing platform has also been added. A pedestrian bridge will be built in the near future, drawing together the citizens of Arlington and Alexandria over the lower section of Four Mile Run.

Source Wtop



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