City Stormwater Projects

Precipitation that cannot be absorbed by the ground due to hard surfaces like rooftops, driveways and parking lots is called stormwater runoff. It carries a variety of pollutants into local streams, which empty into rivers that flow to the Chesapeake Bay. Much of Bowie was built by Levitt and Sons in the 1960s before important environmental regulations such as the Clean Water Act were in place. Bowie, along with dozens of communities across the state, is now required to take steps to improve the quality of water that will eventually flow to the Chesapeake Bay.

The City is actively engaged in several projects related to these requirements. The work will take at least five years, and as each project begins and ends, this page will be updated. You may read the stormwater retrofit assessment here. For additional information on any of the projects below or anything related to stormwater, streams, or water pollution, please contact the City's Watershed Manager, Tiffany Wright (by email or at 301-809-3043). Keep an eye out here for information on upcoming projects including pond restorations at Bowie Gateway Center, Covington, and Glen Allen and two stream restoration projects in Meadowbrook. 

Saddlebrook Branch stream restoration
In 2021, construction was completed on the City's first ever stream restoration project, which provides credit towards the stormwater treatment requirements. The stream, between the Rockledge and Saddlebrook West neighborhoods, had very eroded stream channels and an exposed sanitary sewer line. Recent changes to the accounting guidance from the State for calculating credit made stream restoration much more cost-effective. This is the first of three planned stream restoration projects. Before and after aerial imagery and on-site photos are provided below. 
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Woodhaven Lane pond improvements

A Levitt-era pond on Woodhaven Lane, about 250 feet south of Whitehall Drive was recently upgraded. The changes will include tree clearing, enlarging and excavating the pond footprint, and replacing the fence. A stakeholders meeting was held on Wednesday, June 26, 2019. Construction was completed in 2019.

Spangler Lane pond improvements

In early 2019, the pond on Spangler Lane (between Shelter and Starlight Lanes) was retrofitted to provide water quality treatment. The pond now has a permanent pool of water that will help pollutants fall out of the water. A stakeholders meeting was held on Wednesday, July 25, 2018.

Kenhill Center Bioretention

In the spring of 2019, five small stormwater treatment areas were installed along the back of the parking lot and along the side of the southern entrance from Kenhill Drive. These treatment areas are bioretention cells and rain gardens. Educational signage explain how stormwater treatment works in these smaller, on-site facilities.

Midwood Lane pond improvements

The City’s first stormwater pond upgrade to meet these requirements was completed in early 2018. The project on Midwood Lane adjacent to Belair Swim & Racquet Club included excavating the existing pond to provide a permanent pool of water. This helps pollutants that flow into the pond settle to the bottom before the water is discharged to the Millstream Branch stream. The footprint of the pond was enlarged, and a new fence was installed.