A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

SD1 bringing innovative approach to region’s growing erosion problem; protecting public health

Sanitation District No. 1 will begin an innovative project this month to repair a main sewer line and stabilize the stream bed of Dry Creek in northern Kenton County.

Construction will take place about a mile upstream from the SD1 Dry Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant. (Photo: Pictometry)

The project will address a main sewer pipe that carries 8-10 million gallons of raw sewage to SD1’s Dry Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant every day. The pipe recently became exposed due to accelerated erosion and would pose a serious threat to public health and the environment if it were to fail.

“As Northern Kentucky continues to grow, the region has seen decreasing green space and increasing hard surface areas such as roads and rooftops,” said Matt Wooten, an environmental scientist at SD1. “This can dramatically change how stormwater reaches local waterways.”
Wooten said today’s streams and rivers see more frequent and intense flows than ever before, which can lead to problems such as flooding and the kind of erosion that is happening at Dry Creek.

Mimicking natural stormwater runoff controls, SD1 will distribute rocks of varying sizes along the creek bank. The sediment will redirect erosive forces from the shoreline and help stabilize the stream bed, protecting the critical infrastructure by minimizing the risk to public health and the environment.
This innovative design is the result of SD1’s extensive, multi-year research on the effects of stream erosion in our region. The stream stabilization project highlights how SD1 is moving beyond conventional quick-fixes to develop sustainable, long-term solutions to stormwater management for Northern Kentucky’s future.
To learn how you can help protect your own property and the environment by managing stormwater runoff with downspout disconnection, rain barrels and rain gardens, visit the website.

An exposed sewer line at Dry Creek carries 8-10 million gallons of raw sewage

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