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Nine Mile Run News |  Spring 2018

IN THIS ISSUE • Upcoming Events

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• StormWorks Latest Green Infrastructure Project ....... page 4 • Watershed Forest Master Plan Final Update • NMR Report Card

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• Stormworks 2017 Year in Review 7

Board, Staff and Supporters Board of Directors


James J. Stitt, President Jason J. McBride, PE, Vice President Erin Friez, Secretary Keith Roeper, Treasurer

Brenda Lynn Smith, Executive Director Kevin Gieder, Chief Financial Officer Maureen Copeland, Director of Policy & Outreach Sara Madden, StormWorks Design Director Jared Manzo, Urban Forestry Manager Lindsey-Rose Allen, Restoration Stewardship Coordinator Nathan Resnick-Day, Senior Horticulturalist/Field Technician Josh Weiland, StormWorks Field Technician

Louis Ammon Heather Dodson, PE, LEED AP Ralph Egerman Joseph Fedor Scott Fingal Kevin Gieder, ex officio Monica Hershberger Mark McNally Tony Mologne Leland Scales Zinna Scott Amy Silbermann Brenda Smith, ex officio Marie Stapinski Jordan L. Strassburger William Slivka


Andrew Edkins, Carnegie Mellon University Bethany Bookout, Chatham University

Special thanks to…

Gale McGloin, Development Consultant

Many thanks to all of these supporters who are making our work possible: Anonymous Supporters Allegheny County Conservation District The Allegheny Foundation Amazon Smile American Eagle Outfitters Foundation Chipotle Mexican Grill Choolah Indian BBQ Colcom Foundation Courtney Babcock Borntraeger Foundation Dominion/Western PA Conservancy EarthShare East End Food Co-op EIS Solar First Unitarian Church Field Environmental Instruments, Inc. Fred Steinberg Charitable Foundation Frick Fund of the Buhl Foundation Law Office of Erin Friez GAI Consultants Garden Club of Allegheny County Garden Club of Forest Hills The Heinz Endowments Caroline Fredericka Holdship Trust of PNC Charitable Trusts The Jack Buncher Foundation James Flower and Gift Shop J.M Hopwood Charitable Trust Katherine Mabis McKenna Foundation The Laurel Foundation Michael Baker International The Thomas L. Nied Funeral Home Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Growing Greener Program

People’s Natural Gas Company The Pittsburgh Foundation The following Funds of The Pittsburgh Foundation: The Falco DeBenedetti Fund The Gertrude Hetherington Fund, in memory of David & Laura Oliver The Mary E. Cole Fund The Nine Mile Run Fund The Rita M. McGinley Fund The Short Family Fund Pittsburgh United Pizzeria Uno Port Authority of Allegheny County RedZone Robotics The Richard King Mellon Foundation Sci-Tek Consultants Viridian Energy Wade Trim Wigle Whiskey W.I. Patterson Charitable Fund Wilkinsburg Chamber of Commerce Wilkinsburg Community Development Corporation And all of our members and StormWorks clients! Thanks also to: AstraZeneca BNY Mellon Community Partnership Dominion Foundation Google Microsoft Matching Gifts Program PNC Foundation

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UBS Foundation for matching gifts of our members ALCOSAN Alexander Denmarsh Photography Creek Connections PWSA Test America Urban Forestry Consultants, Inc Wilkinsburg Penn Joint Water Authority For donation of equipment & professional services Coffee Tree Roasters East End Food Co-op Pub in the Park Salvatore’s Pizza, Wilkinsburg for fueling our volunteers!

OUR MISSION The Nine Mile Run Watershed Association restores and protects its watershed ecosystem, while working regionally to support and implement resilient solutions for a healthy urban environment.

Upcoming Events Spring Stream Sweep 

Saturday April 21st, 2018. 9:00 am-12:00 pm Frick Park, Soccer field at the end of the Fern Hollow parking lot. Spring rains wash trash & debris from upper watershed communities into Nine Mile Run. Celebrate Earth Day weekend and help us keep our stream clean and beautiful!

Remake Learning Days-Citizen Science Training May 23rd, 2018. 5:30-7:30pm Lower Frick Park - Nine Mile Run Parking Lot Lancaster St. Regent Square, PA 15217

Learn about biodiversity ID and train to use apps to document biodiversity and become an active citizen scientist! Held in partnership with the Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program.

Bird Walk and Breakfast

Sunday June 10, 2018. 8:00am-12:00pm Soccer Field in Frick Park, end of Fern Hollow parking lot. Local birding experts Jack and Sue Solomon will lead us as we stroll through the Nine Mile Run Valley and witness the seasonal changes that bring so many diverse birds to our watershed. Pre-registration is essential for this event – space is limited!

Tree Discovery Walk June 26, 2018. 6:00 – 7:30pm.

Meet us for a summer evening walk and learn how to identify local tree species. Handouts will be provided for note-taking and your own future tree walks!

Restoration History Tour:  Connecting to the Mon July 14th, 2018. 10:00am-12:00pm

The Nine Mile Run Watershed is home to an aquatic habitat improvement project completed by the US Army Corps of Engineers in Frick Park in 2006. This project was the largest of its kind to be undertaken in a major metropolitan area in the United States and involved the restoration of approximately 2 miles of stream,extensive wetlands, and 100 acres of surrounding parkland. Join us for a hike as we explore the restoration area and learn about its rich environmental history.

Ongoing Events: Urban EcoSteward Events 

All Urban EcoSteward events are open to the public. Learn more about becoming an Urban Ecosteward or joining an event at get-involved/urban-eco-stewards/

Water Talks 

We host a quarterly series of free open houses to discuss water related topics that affect our region over coffee and brews! Dates, topics, and details will be announced at get-involved/events/

Urban Forestry Events  (April-June)

Douglass Park Spring Clean Up  Friday, April 13 Time: 5-7pm Douglass at Laketon Rd

Help Wilkinsburg Hill Top Block Watch tidy up the Douglass Park green space. Tools, protective gear, and refreshments provided.


Wilkinsburg Arbor Day Event Tree Care Wednesday, May 2. 6-7:30pm. 1201 Pitt St.

Tree Care Event in Wilkinsburg: Help us tidy up tree pits along Pitt St. and North Ave in Wilkinsburg. Tools, protective gear, and refreshments provided.

Swissvale Arbor Day Event Tree Care

Saturday, April 28. 9am-Noon. Washington St. Help the Swissvale Shade Tree Committee freshen up the Swissvale business district through tree pit mulching. Free tree seedlings for volunteers will be available while they last

Edgewood Arbor Day Tree Planting

Saturday, April 28. 9am-Noon. Koenig Field Join the Edgewood Shade Tree Committee and NMRWA to help plant trees in the borough. Tools, protective gear, and refreshments provided.

Please see our website for registration and more details. or call us at 412-371-8779 ext 119



JuST The facTS: Installation completed: December 6, 2017 Stormwater captured: Approximately 10,000 gallons in a 1” rainfall Impervious Surface managed: 29,796 sq feet Partners: YWCA, Operation Better Block, Ethos Collaborative funding Partner: PWSA

StormWorks Latest Large Scale Green Infrastructure Project StormWorks latest large scale green infrastructure project is designed to make a positive impact on an area of Pittsburgh that has suffered from chronic flooding woes. The a-42 sewershed is the area that drains towards Washington Boulevard through a network of sewer pipes that carry both stormwater and sanitary sewage. across this large area that includes many impervious surfaces, stormwater has few options but to quickly flow into the overtaxed sewer system. When the pipes cannot handle the volume, which happens with as little as 1/10th of an inch of rain, raw sewage overflows into our rivers & streams. This past year StormWorks had the opportunity to work on a green infrastructure project in this sewershed that illustrates well the new approach to handling stormwater that we have long advocated: capture and handle as much of it at the source as possible, and treat is as a resource rather than a problem. The Homewood Brushton YWCA is the site of the project, and has taken a leadership role in making it happen, working with a team to install 2 large rain gardens on their property. The gardens will allow water from the roof, the parking lot, and even from Frankstown Avenue, to slowly infiltrate into the ground, rather than into the sewer pipes, providing the hydration needed for a lovely greenspace in the process. The planning of these rain gardens allowed for much community participation. We held a charrette in the summer that invited

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stakeholders and nearby residents to weigh in on visual aspects of the garden. Students from Operation Better Blocks’ Junior Green Corps participated, and used what they learned to assist StormWorks’ Design Director Sara Madden in designing the gardens. Together, they measured the space, chose plants, and helped make other key decisions. Finishing touches will be put into place this spring, and the beautiful new gardens will be hard at work, well into the future, managing stormwater, feeding pollinators, beautifying the neighborhood – in short, meeting a variety of needs with a variety of benefits.

Urban Forestry Watershed Forest Master Plan Final  Update In the early months of 2017, NMRWa staff and the plan’s Steering committee developed an outreach strategy to educate residents and stakeholders on the Watershed forest Master Plan as well as collect valuable information about the trees in their respective communities. To collect paper surveys, we attended various public gatherings such as municipal community events and farmers markets. In total, 244 surveys were submitted from Wilkinsburg, Swissvale, Edgewood, and Pittsburgh residents. While the resident survey included fourteen questions, the following were the most noteworthy results for consideration: ● Aesthetic value, air quality improvements, and shade were identified as the top three benefits of trees. ● Infrastructure damage—sidewalk lift, roots in pipes, electrical conflict—and lack of tree canopy were identified as the top issues with neighborhood trees. ● Respondents identified better street tree care, more trees, and community education as top needs in watershed neighborhoods.

● Planting a tree, attending an educational workshop, and volunteering at a tree care event were the most favored ways to get involved in neighborhood tree activities.

Additionally, we conducted nineteen stakeholder interviews, and the responses further supported the trends we witnessed in the survey results in terms of tree benefits, issues, and needs. The outreach results above coupled with the watershed tree analysis results – some of which were shared in our Fall 2017 Newsletter – have yielded not only a vision for the Nine Mile Run Watershed urban forest, but also recommendations toward that vision. For details on what we want and how to get there, keep an eye out for the plan’s release in the coming months!


Stormwater Runoff 

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Upcoming Events Is Your NMR Membership Current? Members make our urban environmental restoration and advocacy work possible. Please join us, and please consider a monthly sustaining membership - it's easier on your budget, and really helps keep our programs running smoothly. More information is at get-involved/membership/ Thanks for your support!!

What more do you want from your house? Improve comfort and efficiency. Create more living space.

Older houses our specialty Consulting and Remodeling 412-241-6042 Special Thanks to:


Non-Profit Org US Postage PAID Pittsburgh, PA Permit No. 23

321 Pennwood ave., Suite 202 Pittsburgh, Pa 15221 Return Service Requested

WaNT To go gReeN?

call (412) 371-8779 ext. 119 or email to receive this newsletter by email.

EIS Solar and NMRWA are proud to announce the

CLEAN ENERGY, CLEAN WATERSHEDS CAMPAIGN Request a free solar evaluation at and choose “Nine Mile Run” in the drop-down menu. Customers installing PV Systems of 3dW or more will receive a $250 PV System Discount, AND NMRWA will receive a $250 donation from EIS. A win-win!

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Spring 2018 Nine Mile News  

Our twice yearly update on all things NMRWA! Includes listings for upcoming events, program updates, and the 2017 Stream Report Card.

Spring 2018 Nine Mile News  

Our twice yearly update on all things NMRWA! Includes listings for upcoming events, program updates, and the 2017 Stream Report Card.