News on the Four Mile Run Restoration Project

News & Photos

SPRING BLOOMING

Beautiful flowers blooming on the Alexandria side of the 4 Mile Run. They were planted as part of the restoration project.

ALEXANDRIA WETLANDS RESTORATION

This beautiful photo was taken April 2017 of the wetlands restoration on the Alexandria side of the project.

ARLINGTON CONSTRUCTION PHOTOS

Many thanks to Arlington County for sharing these photos from April 2017 of the ongoing construction on the Arlington County portion of the project.

ARLINGTON CONSTRUCTION PHOTOS

Many thanks to Arlington County for sharing these photos from December 2016 of the ongoing construction on the Arlington County portion of the project.

ARLINGTON GROUND BREAKING

Local citizens, members of the Four Mile Run Task Force, Arlington County Supervisor Jay Fisette and Delegate Mark Levine joined together on the morning of October 5 to help break ground on the Arlington County portion of the Four Mile Run Restoration project. The work on this portion of the project is expected to be completed in the Fall of 2017.

Ground Breaking

FOUR MILE RUN CONSTRUCTION BEGINNING WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 19

The Arlington County Board approved a construction contract on June 18th for $2.9 million to restore the lower section of Four Mile Run stream.  This project is part of the first phase of the Four Mile Run Restoration Master plan, approved in 2006, which envisions the restoration of the Four Mile Run corridor as a place along which Arlington and Alexandria residents can gather, recreate, and celebrate a shared waterfront legacy. 

The contractor will start setting up for construction the week of September 19th.   A trail detour will be in place throughout much of the construction.

Treatment of invasive plants along the stream bank in Arlington will also take place starting next week.   Residents may see the contractor on site treating and cutting the invasive plants along the stream bank.  The treated area will be marked by signs.  Following the invasive treatment, residents may see brown or cut vegetation along the stream bank.

Project Details

The project location is along Four Mile Run between Mt. Vernon Avenue and Route 1. The work in the stream will include naturalization of the stream bank and construction of living shoreline features along the edge of the stream.  Living shorelines are small stone breakwaters with wetland plants behind them, and they are a more environmentally sensitive way to protect streambanks and coastal areas. They provide numerous benefits including reducing erosion along the bank, improving water quality by capturing sediment and utilizing nutrients, and providing habitat for fish and waterfowl.  The existing stone riprap that currently covers the stream banks will be removed and replaced with native vegetation that will improve the habitat quality and aesthetics of the stream channel.  Some of the stone will also be reused to create the living shoreline features. 

The existing asphalt trail adjacent to Four Mile Run will be closed during construction, and a detour will be in place on the Alexandria trail.  As part of the construction, the Arlington trail will be completely rebuilt to current standards, including a new sub-base and asphalt surface.  Improved trail railings and a new observation platform will be installed.  The project meets Corps of Engineers requirements to maintain flood protection, improves pedestrian access to the waterway as well as aquatic and riparian habitat.  Alexandria recently completed a wetland restoration project across the stream as part of the Four Mile Run Restoration Master Plan partnership. 

 Construction will last approximately through Fall, 2017. The detour has been developed in coordination with the City of Alexandria and the City and County bicycle committees, and will be communicated to the public with multiple forms of advance notice as well as trail signage.

More information:

https://projects.arlingtonva.us/projects/four-mile-run-stream-restoration/

https://4milerun.wordpress.com/about-this-project/

 Ground Breaking Event

 Please join us for a ground breaking event on Wednesday, October 5th at 10 AM.


ARLINGTON CONSTRUCTION TO START SOON

The Arlington County Board approved a construction contract on June 18th for $2.9 million to restore the lower section of Four Mile Run stream.  This project is the first phase of the Four Mile Run Restoration Master plan, approved in 2006, which envisions the restoration of the Four Mile Run corridor as a place along which Arlington and Alexandria residents can gather, recreate, and celebrate a shared waterfront legacy.

 Project Details

 The project location is along Four Mile Run between Mt. Vernon Avenue and Route 1. The work in the stream will include naturalization of the stream bank and construction of living shoreline features along the edge of the stream.  Living shorelines are small stone breakwaters with wetland plants behind them, and they are a more environmentally sensitive way to protect streambanks and coastal areas. They provide numerous benefits including reducing erosion along the bank, improving water quality by capturing sediment and utilizing nutrients, and providing habitat for fish and waterfowl.  The existing stone riprap that currently covers the stream banks will be removed and replaced with native vegetation that will improve the habitat quality and aesthetics of the stream channel.  Some of the stone will also be reused to create the living shoreline features. 

 The existing asphalt trail adjacent to Four Mile Run will be closed during construction, and a detour will be in place on the Alexandria trail.  As part of the construction, the Arlington trail will be completely rebuilt to current standards, including a new sub-base and asphalt surface.  Improved trail railings and a new observation platform will be installed.  The project meets Corps of Engineers requirements to maintain flood protection, improves pedestrian access to the waterway as well as aquatic and riparian habitat.  Alexandria recently completed a wetland restoration project across the stream as part of the Four Mile Run Restoration Master Plan partnership. 

 Treatment of invasive plants along the stream bank in Arlington will begin in September, and construction will begin in October.   Construction will last approximately through Fall, 2017. A trail detour will be in place throughout much of the construction. The detour has been developed in coordination with the City of Alexandria and the City and County bicycle committees, and will be communicated to the public with multiple forms of advance notice as well as trail signage.

 More information:

https://projects.arlingtonva.us/projects/four-mile-run-stream-restoration/

https://4milerun.wordpress.com/about-this-project/


RIBBON CUTTING

Alexandria City Council and staff, Congressman Don Beyer, former Congressman Jim Moran and residents joined together to cut the ribbon on the completion of the wetlands restoration of the Alexandria portion of the Four Mile Run Restoration Project.

RIBBON CUTTING – SATURDAY, MAY 14 AT 8:30 AM

The ribbon cutting for the Alexandria portion of the 4 Mile Run Project will take place on Saturday, May 14th at 8:30 AM. Invitees are asked to gather at the Mt. Vernon Avenue Parking Lot (shown in the blue X in the photo below) to then walk over together for the ribbon cutting.

Ribbon Cutting Map

FOUR MILE RUN JOINT TASK FORCE MEETING

The Four Mile Run Joint Task Force held a meeting on March 10 to provide an update to the community on the progress of the Four Mile Run Restoration Project and other matters in the vicinity. You can view a copy of the presentation provided to the public by clicking here.

Meeting of the Four Mile Run Joint Task Froce.

Meeting of the Four Mile Run Joint Task Force.

PROJECT UPDATE

Photos of Design Enhancement Installation

See the Design Enhancement Installation at the Water Pollution Control Plant

Remy and Veenhuizen were selected in March 2012 to create a unique design enhancement for the fence at the Water Pollution Control Plant. The design ethos of Tejo Remy and Rene Veenhuizen stems from a strong industrial design background, reusing existing resources rather than consuming new materials, and building awareness about our connection to the environment. Remy and Veenhuizen have devised a compelling, innovative design concept consisting of more than 800 linear feet of brightly colored “widgets” that reference the importance of microorganisms in the Plant’s treatment processes. Shaped fence panels are overlaid on the existing fence to create a moiré effect reflecting the movement of water.

Coffee Break with Dutch Designers at the Water Pollution Control Plant


Join Arlington County and Dutch Designers, Remy and Veenhuizen for a coffee, a danish and a walkthrough of their design process and installation in progress. Join us for this special opportunity to view the designers at work while they install this major new addition to Arlington’s public art collection. The fence enhancement installation is the last component of the Water Pollution Control Plant master plan upgrades and serves as a unifying design element for the Four Mile Run Restoration area.

Date: September 23, 2015

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Place: Water Pollution Control Plant, 3610 S Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22202 (along Four Mile Run near South Eads)

 Arlington Construction Bid Results

Earlier this summer, Arlington had the bid opening for the construction of the Four Mile Run Restoration project on the Arlington side of Four Mile Run (sites 1 and 2).  Although six firms attended the pre-bid construction meeting, only 1 firm submitted a bid on the project, and it was substantially higher than the engineer’s cost estimate.  County staff met with the firm that submitted the bid to discuss the factors that were driving the construction costs, which are listed below:

Site Access.  The initial plans required that site access occur from within the stream channel, by constructing a coffer dam along the stream bank.  The dam would create a dry area to work and minimize impacts on park and trail users during construction. However, this approach lengthens the time and cost of construction because the contractor must construct a coffer dam and cross Four Mile Run using a temporary bridge.  In the revised plans, site access will be re-evaluated in order to get competitive, cost-effective construction bids.

Risk of working in a tidal flood control channel.  Dealing with tides and storms in a flood control channel is extremely challenging for construction contractors.  Improving access on the Arlington side of the stream will eliminate the need to cross Four Mile Run for construction, will simplify and reduce the costs of keeping water out of the construction area, and reduce the overall time and cost of construction.  

Grant requirements.   The grant funds are an important leveraged funding source for the project, but several potential bidders expressed concern about meeting the federal grant requirements.  More outreach will be done to potential bidders to explain the grant requirements and to encourage qualified firms to submit construction bids.

 Arlington is revising the construction plans and construction permits to address these issues, and will be putting the project back out to bid in the next few months. 

Construction of Alexandria Wetlands Project  

 Construction on the Alexandria wetlands project (site 3) is proceeding on schedule.  As part of the Four Mile Run Restoration Project, a new emergent tidal wetlands is being created by removing, lowering, and terracing the riverside portion of Four Mile Run Park.  The project will establish and restore the historic wetlands that existed prior to the construction of the flood control channel.   The work to re-grade the wetland has been completed, and planting the wetland will begin soon and should be complete by November, 2015 (assuming no disruptive weather events).  Over 10,000 native wetland plants will be planted in the area.  An upland trail will be included to serve as a buffer between the proposed emergent tidal wetland and the existing forested wetland.  The project is located in the wetlands between Mt. Vernon Avenue and Commonwealth Avenue.

WILDLIFE ON THE FOUR MILE RUN

PROGRESS REPORT

Construction crews continue to clear the site. Wood from the site is either be recycled for lumber and/or mulch

CONSTRUCTION BEGINS

Please be aware that clearing has begun in the Four Mile Run wetlands. Contractors will remove the tree canopy that has grown on the highly degraded artificial fill and the non-native forest floor. Once cleared, the City will replant using only the appropriate, native low and high marsh wetland plants and the area will be restored as a functioning wetland. The adjacent acres of naturally existing (remnant) forested wetlands within the project area will be preserved intact.

Please be aware that clearing has begun in the Four Mile Run wetlands. Contractors will remove the tree canopy that has grown on the highly degraded artificial fill and the non-native forest floor. Once cleared, the City will replant using only the appropriate, native low and high marsh wetland plants and the area will be restored as a functioning wetland. The adjacent acres of naturally existing (remnant) forested wetlands within the project area will be preserved intact.

PUBLIC ART

Tejo Remy and Rene Veenhuizen were selected in March 2012 to create a unique design enhancement for the fence at the Water Pollution Control Plant. Their design ethos stems from a strong industrial design background, reusing existing resources rather than consuming new materials, and building awareness about our connection to the environment. Remy and Veenhuizen will develop and implement a compelling, innovative design concept which will serve as a unifying element within the Four Mile Run area, while creating distinct enhancements for the fence at the Water Pollution Control Plant. It is anticipated the project will be installed in Fall 2015. Thank you to Arlington Public Art for sharing the photos.

 


News Release

March 20, 2015 – The City of Alexandria has issued a press release on the contract they have let for their portion of the Four Mile Run restoration project. You can read the release by clicking here.

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