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Friday, October 23, 2015

Stream restoration projects under way in Wakefield Park

Accotink Creek in Wakefield Park
The Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services is carrying out two stream restoration projects at Wakefield Park in Annandale. 

Work along 3,700 feet in the Accotink Creek watershed area will include the installation of various in-stream structures, a pedestrian bridge crossing, and pipe culverts, as well as stabilization of the stream banks and channel within the park, states a notice from DPWES.

The project is necessary to deal with increasing water runoff from impervious surfaces, such as rooftops, asphalt roads, and concrete, which have replaced the trees, shrubs, ground cover and soil that had helped to retain and filter storm water in the county’s second largest watershed.

“The HOT lane expansion on the beltway exacerbated previous bad conditions,” says Anthony Vellucci, a member of the Park Authority Board representing the Braddock District. “When the beltway was initially put in, there was no consideration to stormwater management.”

As work progresses on the projects, most Audrey Moore RECenter users, and those using the ball fields, tennis courts, and skate park, may see and hear work being done, but there is expected to be little or no impact on access, DWPES states. During the ongoing managed deer hunt, bow hunters are being told to avoid the construction area.

The Cross County Trail will remain accessible at all times, but users will be rerouted along two detours when construction has progressed to the trail location. These detours will remain in effect until the work is completed.

A short segment of the other trail in the southern part of Wakefield Park – between the Beltway to the park entrance road near the maintenance shop – will be closed for about two months. Park Authority staff has already removed the trail marking signs and will repost them when construction moves past this area.

There will be some rerouting of the mountain bike trails when construction begins on the second phase of the project next year. All work is expected to be completed by December 2016.

A stream restoration project on another part of the Accotink watershed was completed in 2013.

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