The Capitol Region Watershed District (CRWD) has received a $1.76 million grant from the Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources to improve water quality in Lake Como in Como Regional Park and Lake McCarrons in Roseville.
The funds, made available through the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, are part of the Targeted Watershed Program. The grant will boost funding for CRWD’s Urban Lake Renewal Project, a project aimed at improving water quality in Lake Como, which is impaired for phosphorous, and protecting Lake McCarrons, which has seen a decline in water quality in recent years. The work will begin this fall.
Meeting water-quality goals for each lake will require a combination of storm-water improvement projects to collect and treat runoff draining to the lakes, in-lake management strategies and a Clean Streets Initiative.
As part of the Clean Streets Initiative, CRWD staff work with residents to prevent, remove and treat polluted runoff before it enters storm drains, flows into Lakes Como and McCarrons, and ultimately reaches the Mississippi River. CRWD estimates 50 to 100 rain gardens may be installed as a result of this project, treating up to 10 pounds of total phosphorus per year, while also increasing public understanding of storm water issues. Currently, a group of 350 volunteers works to keep more than 7,000 pounds of organic debris and more than 11 pounds of phosphorous from entering storm drains near Lake Como. This program will expand to Lake McCarrons.
CRWD includes portions of Falcon Heights, Lauderdale, Maplewood, Roseville and St. Paul and works to protect, manage and improve the water resources of the district, which includes Lake Como, Crosby Lake, Loeb Lake, Lake McCarrons and the Mississippi River.