Anacostia Watershed Society Submits Comments on Anacostia Park Draft Management Plan

Encourages NPS to Maximize Natural Area, Natural Systems

(Washington, DC, March 17, 2017) -- The Anacostia Watershed Society this week submitted detailed comments to the National Park Service in response to the Anacostia Park Draft Management Plan.

AWS expressed support for Alternative 4 as the best plan for Anacostia Park because it preserves the most natural area and allows for the least intrusive management practices on National Park land. AWS supports Alternative 4 because it achieves the highest and best use of National Park land to return, restore and protect the natural environment for the use of all, including future generations. AWS did note some ambiguity between the text and the maps, and made clear that AWS does NOT support the transfer of Poplar Point to the District of Columbia for commercial development.

Among the specific comments offered by AWS:  

  • The Special Use Zone described in Alternative 1, currently occupied by the soon to be abandoned RFK Stadium, should be restored to a natural area with significant reduction in impervious surfaces. Comprised mostly of landfilled tidal wetlands, this area should be restored to its natural state.
  • Areas in the park that fall within the natural floodplain should be redesigned for natural areas and low impact recreation use that can sustain occasional flooding, and reduce the impact of flooding on other developed areas. NPS headquarters, located in the floodplain and protected by a failing sea wall, is one example of this type of area.
  • While the WPA era seawall is considered historic, it is not currently well maintained, protected, or interpreted. Significant sections should be repaired or removed to allow natural or “living” shorelines to be restored along the river.

“Anacostia Park is an incredible resource that can be a first-class National Park, connecting people with the river, nature, and recreation near where they live,” said Jim Foster, President of the Anacostia Watershed Society.

Click here for a downloadable pdf of this press release.

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