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Catfish Creek Streambank Restoration Completed

An eroding streambank on Catfish Creek in the City of Washington had been worrying the neighboring homeowner for a long time . . . until our watershed volunteers stepped in to help.

In two separate projects -- in May 2013 and October 2014 -- both sides of the streambank were built up and restored through the joint efforts of three local nonprofits and a municipality:

  • The Chartiers Creek Watershed Association (CHCWA)

  • The Washington County Watershed Alliance (WCWA)

  • The Washington County Conservation District (WCCD)

  • The City of Washington

The restoration site is near the intersection of Elm Street and Springfield Avenue in Washington PA.

This project was designed and supervised by the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy and was a learning experience for the City and ChCWA.

Here’s how we accomplished this task . . .

(1) First, we dug out the streambank areas that were eroded or had little to no vegetation.

(2) Root wads, provided by Wetland Plants from Apollo PA, were then placed in these locations as deflectors against the flow of the stream. We then drilled holes into the root wads and filled them with rebar to keep the wads in place.


(3) We then covered the root wad trunks with large rocks, strategically placed along the bank to hold it back and prevent further erosion.

(4) Top soil was then added to create a sloped grade between the rocks and the neighbor’s yard. ChCWA planted trees and shrubs along the bank to encourage future stream stability.


(5) We then applied grass seed and hay to the yard and near streambank.

(6) Restored streambank – ChCWA and the City will continue to keep a close eye on this project to make sure everything works as intended.