Washington, D.C. — With many miles of streams buried underground in cities nationwide, American Rivers released a report, “Daylighting Streams: Breathing Life into Urban Streams and Communities” to highlight the benefits of revitalizing urban streams. The report shows how daylighting streams — freeing them from underground pipes and restoring them aboveground — improves water quality, creates parks and open space, and revitalizes communities. The report is timely because many city planners, commissioners, and advocates are looking for cost-effective ways to improve community livability, control polluted runoff, and mitigate flooding.

In cities across America, streams have been paved over and buried in culverts, pipes, or ditches, in one case forcing 73 percent of a major U.S. city’s streams underground. This has caused a variety of impacts including increased localized flooding, increased water pollution, and decreased recreational potential.

The report covers a range of topics, including:
•The benefits of healthy streams
•How development impacts small streams
•Using stream daylighting for multiple benefits including improving water quality, mitigating flooding, and revitalizing communities
•Potential policy changes which could improve protection of small streams or restore small streams through daylighting
•Funding mechanisms for communities interested in implementing a daylighting project

Additionally, the report highlights case studies of communities that have implemented daylighting projects including Bee Branch Creek, Dubuque, Iowa; Arcadia Creek, Kalamazoo, Mich.; Saw Mill River, Yonkers, N.Y.; Peyton Creek, Staunton, Va.; and Blackberry Creek, Berkeley, Calif.

Download the report at www.AmericanRivers.org/DaylightingReport.