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RiversReport         SUMMER 2012 | volume 3 no. 3                                                                         ...
Photo: Bill Freisleben                                                                                                    ...
Photo: Sweet WaterSweet Water Partners and Staff. Back row: Jeff Martinka and Tina Kroening, Sweet Water; Nancy Frank and ...
Photo: T16th St. Community Health Center                                                                    Planting rain ...
Photo: Village of Menomonee Falls                                                                                         ...
Photo: City of Brookfield                                                                                            Green...
Watershed Action Team UpdateCHERYL NENN, MILWAUKEE RIVERKEEPER                                                            ...
Upcoming Events   August 2                                                                                     September 1...
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Rivers Report -- Summer 2012


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Rivers Report -- Summer 2012

  1. 1. RiversReport SUMMER 2012 | volume 3 no. 3 Learning for life Photo: Kate Morgan “Clean water is a matter of proper training!” KATE MORGAN, SWEET WATER Bradford Beach T ake it from Sparkles, our spokesperson, or should I say spokesdog, for the Sweet Water/Root-Pike WIN outreach campaign, funds provided by Root-Pike WIN. The 2012 effort is highly leveraged—for our cash investment of about $120,000 this year, we are expected a Respect Our Waters! With the help of Sparkles, media impact value of about $240,000.Join Sweet we hope to raise awareness about pollution carried A request for qualifications was developed andWater Today! by stormwater and importantly, key actions that people can do around their homes to help sent to 20 ad agencies. A group of agencies responded to the RFP. After a review of their reduce that pollution.It’s free, and it RFPs, we invited three to give presentations toshows that you The campaign has two main components: a TV ad the combined communications committees. campaign including stories and features from Eichenbaum/Associates was chosen to lead thesupport our work. June-September with our media partner, WITI iniative. After a review of options, a TV-focused Fox 6 and a complementary outreach effort July campaign was determined to be the best venueVisit - September at nearly thirty community events to reach our audience. The outreach campaignfor more information. throughout the region. At each event, the first was launched on June 27th. 100 people to visit the Respect Our Waters table Eichenbaum/Associates created a campaign using will receive pet waste bags. In addition, residents humor and a dose of role-reversal. Eichenbaum can register to win a rain barrel and Milorganite.Inside staff created a dog puppet of an American Thank you to MMSD for their support of this water spaniel named Sparkles that serves as our campaign through the donation of rain barrels spokesperson for the campaign. After script approval,this Issue and Milorganite! To recap the development of the campaign—in a series of television campaign ads were taped, with Sparkles being animated by nationalPet Waste Focus. ...................... 2 . February, Sweet Water and Root-Pike WIN joined comedian Jeff Cesario, a Kenosha native now inVolunteer Monitors.................... 2 forces to develop a region-wide campaign for 2012, California. Four regional actors played the rolesSweet Water Update ................. 3 with a two-year campaign budget of $250,000, of local residents.Green Infrastructure.................. 4 which includes WI DNR grants awarded to both So we are off and running! You can help spread Sweet Water and Root-Pike WIN and supportWatershed Action Teams. .......... 7 . the word about the campaign, better yet, help from their respective municipal partners. ThusUpcoming Events....................... 8 spread the messages! To learn more about the far, Sweet Water has raised more than $29,000 campaign, visit and our from 12 area municipalities to match municipal Facebook page •
  2. 2. Photo: Bill Freisleben Help Assess the Attractiveness of Milwaukee’s Waterways! Megan O’Shea, DNR-Area of Concern O ver the last 20 years, the Milwaukee waterfront has changed substantially. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources needs your help to determine if theStudents listen to Scott Reynolds from ECS, Environmental Canine Services aesthetics along the community’s major waterways haveabout how Sable detects human bacteria in storm sewers.– Village of Menomonee Falls improved over the past few decades. Aesthetics can be one of the main obstacles to enjoying thePet Poop Pickup water and can be an indicator of poor public and ecological health. We’re also interested in identifying areas whereRises to Competitive waterfront appearance could be improved. In order to do this, we’re testing an aesthetics monitoringHeights program. As a volunteer aesthetics monitor, you will go out three times to three different sites in 2012, either river sitesNANCY GREIFENHAGEN, MENOMONEE FALLS or beach sites, (see the map below) and fill out a form tellingO n May 10, 2012, the Village of Menomonee Falls hosted the 3rd Annual Stormwater Expo that took place at Fire Station #3 on LillyRoad. There were 350 seventh grade students from North Middle School us how the site looks, and noting any issues. We want to know about the appearance of the water and shoreline, and if there are other problems that interfere with public use of the waterway.that learned about stormwater water quality and participated in the This will help us understand what you think is important“Take the Pet Poop Pickup Challenge,” a timed competitive game that in improving the aesthetics of the waterways in Milwaukee.had kids running across the lawn picking up pet poop (fake of course) The information you collect may also help us determine ifand answering questions about why it is important to pick up pet waste. there are ways we can fix the issues that you identify.Sable, the Sewage Sniffing dog, also visited the students at the Expo If you are interested in monitoring river sites, pleasealong with his owners, Scott and Karen Reynolds, from Environmental contact Chad Thomack with the Urban Ecology CenterCanine Services. Sable is trained to seek out and detect any human waste (414-964-8505); for monitoring of beach sites, pleaseleaking into the storm sewers indicating a leaky pipe or cross connection contact Todd Brennan of the Alliance for the Greatwith a sanitary sewer. His invaluable nose can quickly distinguish the Lakes (414-559-0317). Milwaukee has positioned itself todifference between animal waste from human waste in our stormwater, be a freshwater capital; help be a part of that vision bysaving time and money to find a source of human waste getting into becoming a volunteer for this work! •our rivers and lakes. AESTHETICS MONITORING SITESThe Waukesha County Humane Animal Welfare Society HAWS 1. Bradford Beach 2. McKinley Beach Jetski Launch 3. McKinley Beachco-received a SWWT mini-grant and partnered with the Village of 4. South Shore Beach 5. South Shore Rocky BeachMenomonee Falls to coordinate the installation of ten pet waste bag 6. Bay View Beach 7. North Avenue Dam Bridgestations within the Milwaukee Metro area, including along the Oak Leaf 8. Harley Davidson Museum 9. Valley FieldsTrail, Lincoln Park and several dog parks in Milwaukee to encourage 10. Barnacle Bud’s 11. Lincoln Fieldthe picking up of pet waste. • 12. Pere Marquette Park Check out Sweet Water on Facebook! WI DNRPage 2 SUMMER 2012
  3. 3. Photo: Sweet WaterSweet Water Partners and Staff. Back row: Jeff Martinka and Tina Kroening, Sweet Water; Nancy Frank and Peter McAvoy, UWM; Kim Wright and DennisGrzezinski, Midwest Environmental Advocates; Molly Flannagan, Joyce Foundation; Vicki Elkin, Fund for Lake Michigan; Kim Gleffe and Theresa Morgan, RiverRevitalization Foundation; Cheryl Nenn, Milwaukee Riverkeeper. Front row: Ann Summers, Brico Fund; Ezra Meyer, Clean Wisconsin; David Lee, WE Energies;Christ Clayton, River Alliance; and Joan Herriges, Sweet Water.A Summer Sweet Water ReportJEFF MARTINKA, SWEET WATER It has been a productive spring and summer for Water GIS work from the late Artency Davis. William is helping our Watershed Action Teams with continuing project site planning. He is also working under a new SWWT contract to support CH2M Hill our partnership. in its work on Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District’s regional Looking back, our green infrastructure plan. 8th Annual Clean Rivers Clean Lake We are grateful to our friends Conference at Discovery World at Joyce for their continued Museum on April30th was a success, attracting 255 registrants, up about 15%. The commitment to our work in thespeakers were strong, with attendee evaluations ranking more than85% of the presentations as ‘good’ or ‘excellent’. Spirited plenary watersheds; the importance ofsessions were led by EPA Region 5 Administrator Susan Hedman;WI DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp; Dean of the UWM School of their endorsement cannot beFreshwater Sciences David Garman, and others. Special thanks offered to our 11 conference sponsors and to our conferenceplanning committee volunteers—Marsha Burzynski (WI DNR), In a major policy initiative, our EPA-funded Menomonee RiverClaus Dunkelberg (MKE Water Council), Gary Korb (SEWRPC), Watershed-Based Permit (WSBP) Pilot Project is nearing its completionNancy Greifenhagen (Menomonee Falls), Tom Grisa (Brookfield), in July. That year-long effort has had strong participation byAndy Holschbach (Ozaukee County), Scott Mathie (Metropolitan Menomonee River watershed municipalities, EPA, WI DNR, MMSD,Builders Assn.), Gail Epping Overholt (UW Extension), and Karen SEWRPC, and Sweet Water’s NGO partners. SWWT will nextSands (MMSD). The next conference is set for late April 2013; work with SEWRPC and WI DNR on a multi-tier outreachplan to attend. effort to Menomonee municipal leaders. We are very hopeful that an innovative group storm water permit will be adopted; one whichIn stellar news from May, we learned that the Trustees of the Joyce includes municipalities that constitute the vast majority of theFoundation awarded Sweet Water a major new three-year grant to Menomonee River watershed.continue its work. That decision culminated a nine-month grantplanning and submission process for SWWT and its partners. We Finally, SWWT’s strategic planning efforts are now proceeding. Underare grateful to our friends at Joyce for their continued commitment a Nonprofit Management Fund grant, Sara Wilson of Mayes Wilsonto our work in the watersheds; the importance of their endorsement Associates is now organizing a series of interviews with key SWWTcannot be overstated. stakeholders, conducting an on-line survey with about 60 others, and then guiding a retreat with SWWT’s Steering Council and our JoyceEarly this summer, Sweet Water expanded its Geographic Information Foundation NGO partners. Information gathered will be used toSystems (GIS) efforts. We hired William Mobley to take over Sweet create a new SWWT strategic plan. Stay tuned for details. •SUMMER 2012 Page 3
  4. 4. Photo: T16th St. Community Health Center Planting rain gardens as part of the KK River Neighborhood Stormwater Project. Numerous Efforts Underway to Advance Green Infrastructure in the Region EZRA MEYER, CLEAN WISCONSIN AND DENNIS GRZEZINSKI, MIDWEST ENVIRONMENTAL ADVOCATES Green infrastructure is becoming an increasingly important Development of the Menomonee River Watershed-based Stormwater Permit tool for managing and protecting water resources. US EPA defines green infrastructure as “an approach to wet weather A collaborative effort to develop a framework for a watershed- management that is cost-effective, sustainable, and environmentally based stormwater permit has been underway since 2011, involving friendly. Green infrastructure management approaches and Sweet Water, Menomonee River watershed municipalities, technologies infiltrate, evapotranspire, capture and reuse Wisconsin DNR, US EPA, MMSD, SEWRPC, and several stormwater to maintain or restore natural hydrologies.” In short, NGO partners. This innovative effort will produce a watershed- green infrastructure helps store, convey and use rainwater in based permit for municipalities in the Menomonee River more natural ways than traditional “grey infrastructure.” watershed by the end of this year. The SE WI Regional Water Quality Management Plan Update, The draft watershed-based permit includes: 1] a broader and MMSD’s long-term plans, and the watershed restoration plans more effective coordinated public education and outreach program; for the Kinnickinnic and Menomonee River watersheds all call 2] the ability to jointly devise approaches to detect and eliminate for expanded reliance on green infrastructure throughout area sources of untreated sewage contaminating our rivers and watersheds as a necessary step to improve water quality and lake; 3] cost-effective opportunities for reducing discharges reduce human and ecological problems resulting from excess of suspended solids, even if those opportunities are located in stormwater runoff from our developed urban environment. neighboring municipalities; and 4] implementing a watershed project, either individually or jointly. Green infrastructure In this issue of the Rivers Report, we want to provide a projects represent a significant portion of potential watershed snapshot of the many initiatives promoting and supporting projects, and the permit could encourage greater adoption green infrastructure in the Greater Milwaukee area. Due to of green infrastructure by municipalities in the Menomonee these diverse and broad efforts in the area of green infrastructure, River watershed during its five-year term. our region is on the cutting edge nationally. It is truly an Sweet Water Mini-grant Program exciting time to be engaged in water quality work. Sweet Water supports and encourages small-scale green infrastructure projects through its mini-grants program. story continued on page 5Page 4 SUMMER 2012
  5. 5. Photo: Village of Menomonee Falls Photo: Transition Milwaukee Menomonee Falls Community rain barrel initiative. Wauwatosa rain water cistern installation. story continued from page 5 Grants have been awarded for a variety of projects including: The benefit of these projects includes, but is not limited to, the rain gardens, rain barrels, cisterns, planting of stormwater trees, retention of over one million gallons of stormwater runoff that community garden rainwater collection systems, and stormwater would otherwise have flowed off the urban landscape carrying best management practices in a neighborhood park. The mini-grant associated pollutants into the area’s rivers and Lake Michigan. pilot program began in 2007 with eight grants totaling $8,400 MMSD’s Green Infrastructure Partnership Program awarded to organizations, associations and neighborhood groups for small-scale projects. The District also has a Green Infrastructure Partnership Program aimed at assisting communities and other private and public In 2010, Sweet Water expanded the pilot program including entities in the region with the installation of a variety of green securing its necessary funding. In 2011, over $52,000 was infrastructure practices. Two awards are pending this summer. awarded to 17 projects. In addition to the beneficial impacts on There will be a second round of project solicitation yet this the area’s watersheds, these projects educate residents about the summer and additional awards later in the year. Details at effectiveness and benefits of green infrastructure by serving as visible, public demonstrations of its feasibility and attractiveness. UWM Research on Green infrastructure’s Impacts on MMSD’s Regional Green Infrastructure Plan Property Values This summer, MMSD is leading an effort to create a regional green Researchers at UW-Milwaukee are gathering data about areas infrastructure plan. In this first phase of the effort, due to wrap up adjacent to several specific green infrastructure projects around early next year, the District and its consultants will develop a Milwaukee and evaluating the correlation between green blueprint for the region highlighting opportunities for green infrastructure and surrounding property values. The results infrastructure on private and public lands that will help meet of the study are due out later this year. Preliminary results regional water quality goals. The plan will also support the District’s suggest a positive relationship between green infrastructure strategic objectives to realize its 2035 vision of zero combined and increasing property values of neighboring parcels of land. sewer overflows and no basement backups. Sweet Water is excited Evaluating Creative Mechanisms for Financing Green to be a partner with the District in this important effort. Infrastructure Three different Chicago-based organizations focusing on Great MMSD’s Green Roofs Partnership Program Lakes issues are currently working on separate projects to For a third year, MMSD reached out this to private and public evaluate mechanisms for financing widespread implementation sectors in search of eligible green roof projects that it could help of green infrastructure in the Milwaukee area. MMSD is a to fund through its green roofs partnership program. Through partner on all of these efforts. The hope is that what is learned this and a predecessor program, the District has assisted with through these efforts can inform the approaches pointed to the construction of nearly nine acres of green roofs in the region. story continued on page 6SUMMER 2012 Page 5
  6. 6. Photo: City of Brookfield Green roof on Brookfield’s Wirth Park Pool House. story continued from page 6 in the regional green infrastructure plan. The organizations the City of Milwaukee, General Mills and other partners. The involved in this research include Landen Consulting and the next phase of work will include retrofitting the large expanse of Alliance for the Great Lakes, the Natural Resources Defense impervious surface with green infrastructure practices. Fifteen Council, and Environmental Consulting & Technology. bio-swales along 6th street were recently completed. The plans include over 12 acres of additional green infrastructure projects Green Infrastructure Portfolio Standard Pilot Project in the area. American Rivers, the Center for Neighborhood Technology, and the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative are working Green Infrastructure Enhances Public Housing Project with the City of Milwaukee and MMSD on an EPA-funded The Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee and American green infrastructure portfolio standard pilot project. The project Rivers are working together to transform a 75-acre public aims to test an approach whereby a city could steadily plan housing development into a vibrant, new mixed-income and for and implement green infrastructure “retrofits” that would mixed-use community featuring green infrastructure practices incrementally, but substantially over time, reduce the volume centrally in the plans. The Westlawn development is located of stormwater and pollutants entering the sewer system and/or on the northwest side of Milwaukee and borders Lincoln the environment. Creek, a tributary to the Milwaukee River. The Fund for Lake Michigan is funding some of the green infrastructure for the Milwaukee’s 30th St. Industrial Corridor Westlawn project. The City of Milwaukee and MMSD, along with consultants • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • and other partners, are working together to evaluate the proper mix of green and grey infrastructure practices which can be As these examples show, green infrastructure is making its retrofitted into this established industrial corridor for enhanced mark on the water quality landscape in southeastern Wisconsin. water quality and flood management benefit. Many of these ongoing efforts are likely to accelerate the tremendous progress we’ve seen to-date. There are more green Milwaukee’s 6th St. “Green Corridor” infrastructure projects and initiatives underway that we didn’t The City of Milwaukee’s Common Council recently declared cover in this issue. We will continue to cover as many as we South 6th Street between Howard and College Avenues the can in coming issues of the Rivers Report in hopes of keeping “Green Corridor” after three years of continuous work by the momentum going and moving us closer to our goals of groups including American Rivers, Gateway to Milwaukee, swimmable, fishable rivers and Lake Michigan as quickly and Energy Exchange, the Garden District Neighborhood Association, cost-effectively as possible. •Page 6 SUMMER 2012
  7. 7. Watershed Action Team UpdateCHERYL NENN, MILWAUKEE RIVERKEEPER solutions to address the severe streambank erosion and degradation Photo:CRiver Revitalization Foundation Granville Dog Park 100yr Flood Plain / at Granville Dog Park adjacent to the Menomonee River and discussed LE needed amenities and improvements for the dog park. RRF and their ST O AT N E HW consultants are working on the restoration plan for this site and hope US Y HW 10 PA Y 0 R to move into implementation work soon. 45 Ex K it US 49 HW Y4 5 Work Plans and Road Map Forward ST AT Following the Joyce Foundation’s announcement that Sweet Water E HW US Y will receive a second, 3-year grant to support its activities, WAT HW 10 0 Y4 1 FO coordinators and Sweet Water partners are developing work plans for DN DU ST the next grant period that clearly outline specific tasks, responsibilities, LA AT C E HW US and next steps related to WATs; Science, Policy, and Communications Y HW 14 5 Y4 Committees; and new initiatives such as enhanced outreach to the 1 agricultural community. Exit 4 7B It’s now time to focus our efforts on advancing priority projects that will have the LEGEND PARKS BOUNDARIES greatest impact on water resources. 100-YEAR FLOODFRINGE AREA P Legend AM 100-YEAR FLOODPLAINBoundaries Parks AREA R 100-YEAR FLOODWAY AREA Area 100-year Floodfringe Area 100-year Floodplain 100-YEAR HIDDEN FLOODFRINGE AREA 100-year Floodway Area GOOD HOPE 100-year Hidden Floodfringe Area 100-YEAR HIDDEN FLOODWAY AREA 100-year Hidden Floodway Area From a WAT perspective for both the Menomonee and Kinnickinnic, we plan to work with stakeholders and key technical advisors to completeE xcuse our dust. The Watershed Action Teams (WATs) are in a transition from watershed planning efforts to projectimplementation. Moving forward, the WATs will play a different a list of priority projects (as identified in the Watershed Restoration Plans and Implementation Plans) in each of the categories below by the end of 2012.role with an emphasis on pushing projects forward and establishing • Low impact stormwater and green infrastructureworking groups to prioritize our work. Please check the Sweet Water • Riparian habitat restorationwebsite for updates as to future meetings and ways to get involved! • . treambank erosion control/stabilization SSpring Menomonee WAT Meeting Focused on • Fish passage (Menomonee only)Dog Park Solutions • Human bacteria find-and-fixWAT members gave feedback toward the end of 2011 recommending • . gricultural run-off (Menomonee only) Athat WATs continue to meet on a quarterly basis, which wouldallow more energy to be spent on project implementation efforts Many excellent projects were proposed as part of our planning efforts,between meetings. While WAT meetings could and should be used but it’s now time to focus our efforts on advancing priority projectsas a venue for project updates and to provide information on funding that will have the greatest impact on water resources. As part ofand collaboration opportunities, participants felt that meetings could this prioritization process, we will convene working groups to helpalso focus on discussion of events and activities within a geographical us determine appropriate criteria to help prioritize projects such aslocation, a specific skills training, or a project demonstration. riparian restoration projects.With this suggestion in mind, the Menomonee WAT held a meeting Sweet Water’s Science Committee is working to develop criteria toon April 12th at Dretzka Park to discuss River Revitalization Foundation’s prioritize other projects such as bacteria monitoring and finding/fixing(RRF) Granville Dog Park Restoration Project. Attendees included bad stormwater outfalls. Please check the Sweet Water websiteWAT regulars as well as local neighbors, dog park advocates, and and sign up for Sweet Water’s e-newsletters to learn of ways to getMilwaukee County Parks’ representatives. Participants brainstormed involved in WAT activities. •SUMMER 2012 Page 7
  8. 8. Upcoming Events August 2 September 13 Granville Dog Park Stakeholder Meeting Schlitz Park 5K Challenge River Revitalization Foundation 1555 N. River Center Dr. | Milwaukee, WI 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Registration: 4:30 p.m. | Step-off: 5:30 p.m. Dretzka Park Clubhouse Awards and post-race events: 6:15 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. 12020 W. Bradley Rd. | Milwaukee, WI For information, visit For information, visit civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=173 August 2 September 19 - 21 Kinnickinnic River Hike WI Water Association Conference Radisson Paper Valley Hotel 6:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. 333 W. College Ave | Appleton, WI Meet at the Urban Ecology Center For information and registration, 1500 E. Park Place | Milwaukee, WI visit Register at October 9 - 10 August 11 Water Council’s 2012 Water Summit: Hank Aaron State Trail – 5 K Run/Walk Building the Water Centric City Registration: 7:00 a.m. – 8:15 a.m. | Step-off: 8:30 a.m. Discovery World | 500 N. Harbor Dr. | Milwaukee, WI Klement’s Sausage Haus at Miller Park 1 Brewers Way | Milwaukee, WI For information and registration, visit Free parking available in East Lot of Miller Park http// October 10 Clean Water Act 40th Anniversary August 13 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. Macro Invertebrate Mayhem: Learn About Water Quality Discovery World | 500 N. Harbor Dr. | Milwaukee, WI Through the Study of Aquatic Insects For information, contact Paul Schwarzkoph at 414-287-0207 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. ext. 1 or Hubbard Park | 3565 N. Morris Blvd. Shorewood, WI visit info?reset=1&id=189 Register at September 7 - 9 National and International Urban and For a full calendar of Sweet Water’s Small Farm Conference events, visit our website at WI State Fair Park | 640 South 84th Street West Allis, WI For more information, visit www.growingpower.orgRiversReport PARTNERS MANAGING EDITOR Kate Morgan, Sweet Water Learning for life CONTRIBUTING EDITORS600 East Greenfield Avenue University of Wisconsin Extension Jeff Martinka, Sweet WaterMilwaukee, WI 53204 9501 W. Watertown Plank Road Gail Epping Overholt, UW-Extension Wauwatosa, WI 53226PHONE (414) 382-1766WEB PHONE (414) 256-4632EMAIL WEB This publication made possible in part through EMAIL gail.overholt@ the generous support of This material is paid for in part by support from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, under Assistance Agreement No. GL00E00651-0.Page 8 SUMMER 2012