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The project will be rather effective in the upper part, and diminish o somewhat downstream. But still it will provide an area of park that
can be almost continuously utilized by the citizenry here.
In these reaches 7, 6, and 5, floods that occur on the average of once in 10 years will be eliminated. In reaches 4 and 5, a 5-year level of · protection will be provided. And, down here, a 2-year.
Down in this lower area, flooding is serious, and it will often occur many times in one year. It causes many disruptions in traffic for the many people that work in this area.
The prime benefits are the reduced damages to existing facilities and to permit a greater use for the area, and not to have that use disrupted by flood.
The total cost of the project is $2,128,386. Now, of that amount, funds under the authority of Public Law 566 will be provided, $1,286,734, or 60 percent of the total cost. The local organizations will provide $841,652.
The project is sponsored by the Montgomery County government, the Montgomery County Soil Conservation District, and the Maryland National Capital Pårk and Planning Commission.
In addition to those official sponsors of the project, however, the Washington Surburban and Sanitary Commission has participated; the Rock Creek Watershed Association which was organized in 1955 and has been very instrumental in bringing this plan almost to its point of approval; and the State government has participated, as has the Maryland Game and Inland Park Commission and the Maryland Extension Service.
It has been an outstanding example of cooperative endeavor by all the folks that are interested in this particular segment.
I might say that the difficulty in accomplishing the plan, because of the development, has caused many alterations. That is why it has been, since 1956 until now, that a final plan has been prepared.
Site 5, even in the planning stage, had to be relocated somewhat to accommodate a sewerline going up to Gaithersburg. The Washington Suburban and Sanitary Commission cooperated in this by relocating the sewerline at an expense of some $125,000, of which the Montgomery County contributed some $50,000.
So all in all, I think it is a very excellent project, and I know of no opposition to it whatsoever. Thank you, sir. (The charts referred to are as follows:)
UPPER ROCK CREEK WATERSHED WORK PLAN
Size and location.—38,765 acres in Montgomery County. Sponsor8.-Montgomery County ; Montgomery County Soil Conservation District; Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission.
Purposes: Watershed protection, flood prevention, fish and wildlife development, and recreation.
Principal measures: Soil conservation practices on farms and urban areas, and structural measures consisting of two multiple-purpose storage structures and 2 miles of trout stream improvement. Storage capacity of the structures are 4,228 acre-feet and 4,329 acre-feet.
1 This is primarily the cost of applying land treatment measures by landowners. Cost sharing from Fed. eral sunds appropriated for the agricultural conservation program may be available if included in the county program developed each year in consideration of approved State and National programs and the annual authorization by the Congress. 2 Consisting of:
Adininistration of contracts.
$1.000 Construction and installation services cost for recreation.
62 792 Land, easements, and rights-of-way Relocation of facilities.
240.100 Benefit-cost ratio.-1.3 to 1.
Senator BREWSTER. Thank you very much, sir.
How far is this from the District of Columbia line-where the dam would be located?
Mr. SWIGART. It is roughly 10 to 12 miles. It is 20 miles all the way to the top of the watershed.
Senator JORDAN. Where is the District of Columbia line on that map?
Mr. SwIGART. Right here, sir.
Senator JORDAN. Now, that is the Rock Creek Parkway. I mean that is Rock Creek that comes down behind the zoo.
Mr. SWIGART. That is right-part of the zoo is in it. And Beach Drive comes in right down along East-West Highway here, down along Rock Creek Park. And that is those low water floodings, crossings that are flooded too often, and you read about folks being stranded there, and so forth.
Senator BREWSTER. Thank you very much, sir.
Mr. Freeman is the Assistant Regional Director, National Capital Region, National Park Service, Department of the Interior.
We would like to hear from you, sir.
STATEMENT OF RAYMOND L. FREEMAN, ASSISTANT REGIONAL
DIRECTOR, NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION, NATIONAL PARK SERV. ICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
Mr. FREEMAN. Mr. Chairman, I have a short statement, two pages long. I would like to submit it for the record. I could say a few words generally of what is in the statement that I think would suffice, if this is all right with you.
Senator BREWSTER. Please proceed.
Mr. FREEMAN. The National Park Service, Department of Interior, really appreciates the opportunity to express our views on this project.
Our National Capital region of the Park Service has the jurisdictional responsibility for the park system of the District of Columbia, and the parkways, and the environs.
We have cooperated to some extent in a minor way with the study work on this project by furnishing some statistical data on the extent of floods in Rock Creek in the District, how long a time the picnic areas, primarily, are out of use when we do have a flood. It averages some 3 days. It takes a lot of manpower to clean up the area and replace tables. fix up the fire grates, and generally put the ground back in shape for people to use it again.
It has been a serious problem with our office over the years.
On studying this plan, and being in on it to some extent from the beginning, we feel that it is most beneficial, and is a project that would be of great assistance to the National Park Service, with the operation of our parks, and preserving and protecting them in the District of Columbia.
It would cut down on the floods that plague Rock Creek, that knock out the picnic areas. It would not eliminate the floods completels, but it would certainly move it to the extent where people would have
the opportunity to enjoy these parks more often, and they would also save the Government a lot of money on the cleanup and repair and replacement of tables, and that sort of thing.
We feel this is a project that is very worthwhile, and we hope it goes forward to help us preserve Rock Creek Park.
I would be glad to answer any questions that any of the gentlemen of the committee may have.
(The statement referred to follows:)
STATEMENT OF THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
UPPER ROCK CREEK WATERSHED WORK PLAN
The National Park Service is very pleased to have this opportunity to comment on the proposed flood control and land treatment program recommended in the watershed work plan for the upper Rock Creek watershed. The Park Service has been vitally concerned with the studies and planning which have gone into the preparation of this work plan. At the request of the sponsors of this study project, we have provided information, statistics, and data to the staff preparing the plan, and, at several stages in its preparation, have reviewed its progress. The public benefits that will accrue if this watershed plan is implemented affects the responsibility of this office in a very vital way. L’nder the act approved May 29, 1930, known as the Capper-Cramton Act, Congress provided for acquisition of lands in the District of Columbia and the States of Maryland and Virginia for the purpose of stream valley preservation, erosion control, and prevention of pollution. The lands acquired under this act in the District of Columbia are the responsibility of the National Park Service for administration, operation, and maintenance. We have, therefore, during the past 30 years that this program has been in operation, acquired considerable experience in observing the damage that uncontrolled floods and siltation have on the public benefits provided for in the Capper-Cramton Act. This is especially true of the Rock Creek Park in the District of Columbia, authorized by the Congress for preservation of its natural characteristics.
The Rock Creek watershed work plan, in our considered opinion, represents a necessary, major step in carrying out the program that Congress has authorized for preservation of the Rock Creek stream valley. The plan goes far in protecting the valley from a great future increase in the very serious runoff and flooding problem that is presently causing so much destruction in the Rock Creek Valley. This destruction is not necessarily limited to land and facilities-human life is also involved. It is reasonable to expect that this destruction will continue to increase if a coordinated program of flood control and land treatment practices are not instituted before high intensity development expands over the watershed of the upper reaches of Rock Creek. The National Park Service believes that the watershed work plan represents the most economical approach to providing the necessary public benefits that will result from this program. The provision of multipurpose facilities in conjunction with the water impoundment, including important recreation uses, is far sighted, and we are pleased that recreation is included as a part of the watershed work plan for the upper Rock Creek. Without the facilities and programs proposed in this plan, the National Park Service, in administering the Rock Creek Park in the District of Columbia, will have to contend with the increasing cost for restoration and replacement of recreation facilities from flood damages
, as well as great loss of recreational opportunities while the park is flooded and out of use for cleanup operations. Any proposal which promises the long-range reduced cost to the taxpayers and, at the same time, reduces loss of recreational opportunities and provides for intelligent and better use of our limited land resources, would clearly seem to be in the best interest of all concerned.
Senator BREWSTER. Any questions?
Senator BREWSTER. Mr. Freeman, in your opinion, then, this is a necessary improvement?
Mr. FREEMAN. Yes. I might point out on the map-this whole section right here is Rock Creek Park, very heavily used. And most