Westernport in Allegany County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Working Together for the Community
Westernport Flood Mitigation, Restoration, and Park Development Project
Flooding. In 1996, two devastating floods caused catastrophic damage throughout a four county area of Western Maryland. The town of Westernport, located at the confluence of Georges Creek and the Potomac River, was one of the hardest hit by the floods, and one of the first to incorporate non-structural alternatives in their flood recovery efforts.
Phase I. Flood recovery efforts included the purchase and removal of 27 homes located within the floodplain, reconstruction of streambank retaining walls to protect highway infrastructure, repair and relocation of sanitary sewers, and the environmental restoration and re-establishment of the floodplain area for a one mile stretch of Georges Creek in Westernport
Phase II. Westernport Creekside Park was developed in the newly acquired floodplain open space. Participants in the planning process included school students, educators, senior citizens, property
Why use no structural alternatives?
The planting of vegetation along streambanks slows down flow, decreasing erosion and downstream floodpeaks.
Non-structural alternatives promote the creation of pools and riffles which improve fish habitat.
Shade provides improved habitat and helps maintain water temperature.
Restoration efforts using bioengineering methods reduce bank erosion and channel deposition, which significantly reduces maintenance costs.
Working naturally with the waterway will help the creek to stabilize itself and maintain its banks and channel.
Project Partners. Town of Westernport Westernport Elementary School Saint Peters Elementary School Westernport Senior
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Natural Resources • Notable Events. A significant historical year for this entry is 1996.
Location. 39° 29.452′ N, 79° 2.555′ W. Marker is in Westernport, Maryland, in Allegany County. Marker is on Main Street (Maryland Route 937) near Ross Street, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Westernport MD 21562, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Don Redman (approx. 0.6 miles away in West Virginia); Mayo and Savage (approx. 0.8 miles away in West Virginia); Veterans Memorial (approx. 0.9 miles away); Thomas McCoole Home (approx. 4.6 miles away in West Virginia); West Virginia (Mineral County) / MarylandPotomac State College (approx. 5 miles away in West Virginia); Fort Fuller (approx. 5 miles away in West Virginia); Encircling the Nazi War Machine & German Capitulation (approx. 5 miles away in West Virginia).
Also see . . . Governor's Flood Mitigation Task Force for Western Maryland. This page has a photo of the 1996 flood. “The State of Maryland experienced several floods in 1996, two of which resulted in Presidential Disaster Declarations. Rapid snowmelt from the blizzard of early January 1996 led to the first of the two flooding disaster declarations (January 19, 1996) due to damage in Allegany, Garrett, Frederick, Washington, and Cecil counties. A second Presidential Disaster Declaration was granted for Allegany, Frederick, and Garrett Counties on September 22, 1996 as a result of heavy rainfall from Tropical Storm Fran. Both of the declared flooding disasters manifested the greatest damage in Western Maryland, although damage from Tropical Storm Fran was noted around the State.” (Submitted on July 28, 2010.)
Credits. This page was last revised on April 27, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 28, 2010, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 879 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on July 28, 2010, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.