by Marlene Berlin
The District Department of the Environment has started work on controlling stormwater runoff where Linnean Avenue dead-ends on the north side of the Soapstone Valley.
This is similar to but separate from DDOE’s restoration of the Linnean stream a few blocks northeast of this location. As I wrote here last year, this project will stabilize the slope that is being eroded by the storm water that gushes into Soapstone during rain storms. (See “The Other Linnean Restoration Project”)
Trouble spots like this exist up and down the length of the Soapstone Valley. Erosion was threatening a sidewalk near the trailhead on Albemarle Street east of Connecticut Avenue last year.
Excessive runoff also accelerates the erosion of the streambank. That, in turn, threatens the trail that many of us enjoy.
We have volunteers doing their best to keep the Soapstone trail in good shape. But the valley’s neighbors can do more to prevent the stormwater from rushing through the neighborhood in the first place.
Any homeowner who wishes to install rain barrels and rain gardens can apply for a grant from DDOE’s RiverSmart Homes program. And large-scale projects like UDC’s green roof further reduce the amount of water racing from our rooftops, driveways and streets into the Soapstone Valley.