Chesapeake Bay Program Urban Stream Restoration FAQs

By Lisa Fraley-McNeal and Bill Stack

Stream restoration is a billion-dollar industry across the nation and is expected to grow exponentially to address water quality needs. In the Chesapeake Bay watershed alone, approximately 700 miles of stream restoration projects are expected to be implemented to achieve the nutrient and sediment load reductions defined by the Chesapeake Bay TMDL (Schueler and Stack, 2014). The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) convened an Urban Stream Restoration Expert Panel that was co-chaired by the Center for Watershed Protection and the Chesapeake Stormwater Network (CSN) to develop nutrient and sediment crediting protocols for stream restoration. The final panel report was approved and published in September 2014. Many of the report’s recommendations were incorporated into national stream restoration crediting guidance developed by WERF.


Due to the complexity of the protocols, we received many phone calls looking for assistance with the load reduction calculations and navigating the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Model framework. We reached out to the CSN and the CBP to help develop a FAQ document for answering questions about the crediting of Stream Restoration BMPs under the Chesapeake Bay TMDL framework. Within this document, you can learn which projects are eligible for crediting, how to apply the crediting protocols and how the credits will be simulated within the Chesapeake Bay Program’s Phase 6 Watershed Model. In addition, the document includes design examples from consultants that have worked closely with us on the protocols and a handy spreadsheet developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Ecosystem Planning and Restoration for calculating TMDL credit when using the BANCS modeling approach to estimate streambank erosion rates. The document is currently under review by the CBP and awaiting final guidance on how sediment will be simulated in the Phase 6 watershed model before it can be finalized. A final version is anticipated in January 2018, but in the meantime, you can review the draft version at:


While the FAQ document helps to answer questions about application of the stream restoration protocols, we’ve found that many municipalities and practitioners still have questions related to proper site selection, restoration potential, and proper assessment such as through the BANCS method. The Center has begun offering workshops to provide training to develop an in-depth understanding of how to use and apply the CBP Stream Restoration crediting protocols, learn about site selection and assessment methods to rapidly evaluate existing stream conditions, recommend potential stream restoration solutions, and evaluate the feasibility of potential stream restoration projects for project implementation prioritization. If you are interested in conducting this type of workshop in your area, please contact Bill Stack

Bill Stack, PE

Deputy Director of Programs

As the Deputy Director of Programs, Bill’s responsibilities include program and resource development, supervision, and marketing. With over 40 years of experience in the field, Bill is the senior resident expert on staff. Before coming to the Center, Bill worked in Baltimore City and also served as a past Center Board Member. Bill has a B.S. in Biology from St. Mary’s College of MD and a M.S. in Biology from Towson University and is a professional engineer licensed in Maryland. Bill lives in Carroll County, MD with his wife.

Lisa Fraley-McNeal

Research Specialist

Lisa has been working on urban watershed and stormwater management since 2006. Her areas of expertise include GIS and field methods for watershed assessment, watershed planning, stream restoration, Chesapeake Bay TMDL crediting, and applied research on topics related to watersheds and stormwater. She has a B.S. degree in Geography and Environmental Systems, with a writing minor and cartography certificate from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Lisa also has a M.S. degree from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County in Marine and Estuarine Environmental Science.


2017-11-07T13:23:55+00:00 November 6th, 2017|