D'Olive Creek

Geosyntec Consultants is currently contracted with MBNEP to update the D’Olive Creek Watershed Management Plan originally completed in 2010. The update began in late March 2020 and includes an evaluation of existing watershed conditions, identification of critical issues negatively impacting the watershed, development of strategies and implementation program to reduce watershed impacts, and a review of the effectiveness of the previous watershed management plan. To date, Geosyntec Consultants has completed an updated watershed characterization and performed an assessment of the watershed’s vulnerability to climate change. Anticipated completion of the update is January 2021.

Final Plan

Purpose of Watershed Management Plan

Excessive erosion and sedimentation have plagued the approximately 7,700-acre D’Olive Watershed since the 1970s. Population growth and urban development have continued to intensify problems in each of the Watershed’s three principal drainages (D’Olive Creek, Tiawasee Creek, and Joe’s Branch) within the Cities of Daphne and Spanish Fort and associated unincorporated areas of Baldwin County. Increased volume and velocity of stormwater runoff, as well as changes to local drainage patterns, have exacerbated concerns over erosion and sedimentation within the Watershed’s stream network, Lake Forest Lake, D’Olive Bay, and Mobile Bay.

Watershed Management Plan Goals

The four primary objectives that guided the development of the conceptual management measures addressed in the WMP were:

  • Reduce upstream sediment inputs into the Lake Forest Lake/D'Olive/Tiawasee system.
  • Reduce ongoing sediment loads into D'Olive Bay and the Mobile Bay estuary.
  • Remediate and restore past effects of these sediment loads, including lake restoration.
  • Mitigate future impacts of development in the watersheds, where feasible.

Lake Forest Lake

Lake Forest Lake and its tributaries, D’Olive Creek and Tiawassee Creek, are valuable assets to our community. They provide aesthetic and recreational benefits to Lake Foresters and the surrounding community, are the home to many forms of life, and the lake plays an important ecological function in keeping sediment out of D’Olive Bay. These water bodies and the life they support are resources worth preserving and enhancing.

Over the years, Lake Forest Lake has performed very well in its role of sediment trapping. So well in fact that its function defines its fate: eventually filling completely with sediment. This is an outcome that is in no one’s best interest. With careful planning and forethought though, the useful life of the lake can be extended for the mutual benefit of Lake Foresters and its wetland life.

The planning involved with preserving and restoring the lake is a community effort. The Mobile Bay National Estuary Program, with funding provided by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund, and assistance from the Lake Forest Property Owners Association, has assembled a team to study and identify goals, expectations, and concepts for preserving and restoring Lake Forest Lake.

Lake Forest Lake documents for download
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