Kinston Free Press Sept. 18, 2008

Officials prepare for stream restoration project

David Anderson
Staff Writer

As state and city officials prepare for a major stream restoration project, the citizens who live in and around the affected zone are invited to attend a public meeting Thursday.

The meeting, which will be held in the Holloway Park Recreation Center, is a chance for residents to ask questions of those working on the N.C. Ecosystem Enhancement Program's $2.7 million effort to make over a 2-mile section of Adkin Branch.

Kristie Corson, an EEP environmental specialist who is working on the project, said Tuesday that the stream banks between N.C. 11 and Lincoln Street, which are currently vertical thanks to erosion, will be re-shaped as curves so the waterway has "easier access" to the surrounding floodplain when it overflows.

Bulkheads installed by individual property owners along the banks will also be removed. Finally, workers will plant vegetated buffers along the stream.

Corson joined a group of 25-30 contractors from around the state on a walking tour through the targeted area Tuesday morning.

Kevin Williams, of the Raleigh engineering firm Ko and Associates, which created the designs for the project, served as their tour guide.

Brian Lucas, the Kinston Department of Public Services' street superintendent, also joined the tour. He said Adkin Branch is the city's main stormwater drainage conduit, and that city officials have helped the EEP obtain assessments from property owners along the stream.

The bidding process begins at 3 p.m. on Oct. 3 and continues for about six to eight weeks. Project managers plan to begin construction in early December.

"(The designs) are complete, and we have our permits and we are ready to go," Corson said.

David Anderson can be reached at (252) 559-1077 or danderson@freedomenc.com.