TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: Comments are invited on the work described below. Please see the Public Involvement section for details on submitting comments.
Point of Contact. If additional information is desired, please contact the regulator, Marc Fossett, telephone number: (501) 340-1375, mailing address: Little Rock District Corps of Engineers, Regulatory Division, PO Box 867, Little Rock, Arkansas 72203-0867, email address: Marc.R.Fossett@usace.army.mil
Project Information. Pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S. Code 1344), notice is hereby given that
Mr. David Hopkins, PE
City of Little Rock, Arkansas
7001 West Markham
Little Rock, Arkansas 72201
has requested authorization for work, including the placement of dredged and fill material, in waters of the United States associated with drainage improvements of approximately 350 linear feet of existing intermittent stream channel along Senate Drive within Castlewood Subdivision. Impacts of the regulated waters will include widening and concrete-lining parts of the channel. Placement of riprap within the channel for erosion control will also be incorporated. Total impacts to waters of the United States include approximately 350 linear feet (LF) of stream impacts. The proposed project is located approximately 0.2 miles west of the intersection of Senate Drive and Geyer Springs Road in an unnamed tributary to Little Fourche Creek, in section 1, T. 1 S., R. 13 W., Little Rock, Pulaski County, Arkansas.
The project purpose is to aid in the prevention of erosion and flooding of nearby residential housing within the surrounding neighborhood.
The applicant proposes to concrete-line and widen approximately 240 LF of channel (upstream/north of Senate Drive and concrete apron at the culvert outfall) and replace an existing single 84-inch wide by 46-inch tall reinforced concrete box culvert (RCBC) with a triple 75-inch wide by 48-inch tall RCBC (extending approximately 35 LF under Senate Drive). Two areas of rip-rap erosion protection, totaling approximately 20 LF (17 cubic yards (CY)), will be installed below the ordinary highwater mark (OHWM) at the upstream of the proposed channel improvements and just downstream of the proposed culvert installations. In addition to the above improvements, approximately 90 LF (30 CY) of rip-rap lining will be installed above the OHWM of the right descending channel bank, downstream of the proposed culvert replacement.
The existing project area consists of an urban, channelized, intermittent stream channel that flows through an existing residential neighborhood and crosses Senate Drive. The channel has an average width of approximately 4-7 feet with an OHWM height of approximately 5-12 inches above the channel bottom. Channel substrate consists primarily of silt and small gravel. Currently, the channel is highly eroded and out-of-bank flooding and overtopping is an issue within the surrounding residential area. Portions of the channel are already armored with rock and concrete from past attempts to reduce erosion.
Four alternatives were considered for the purposes of improving erosion and flooding issues. The first alternative would include a no action alternative in which the channel would be left in its current state allowing the channel to continue to erode and flood nearby residential structures. The second alternative would include concrete-lining and widening the entire stream reach, until its confluence with the receiving stream (which currently consists of a concrete lined, vertical wall, rectangular channel). The third alternative (preferred alternative) would minimize concrete-lining and armoring to existing eroded areas and providing velocity and energy dissipation at transitions. The fourth alternative would include the construction of an off-site detention basin adjacent to the project area for additional flood storage. This option is non-viable because there are no available properties adjacent to the project area that would allow for the construction of an off-site stormwater management facility, such as a detention basin.
Compensatory mitigation requirements for impacts to the streams would be assessed utilizing the Little Rock Stream Method. The applicant proposes to mitigate for the stream impacts by purchasing stream credits from an approved mitigation bank that services the area.
The location and general plan for the proposed work are shown on the enclosed sheets.
Water Quality Certification. By copy of this public notice, the applicant is requesting water quality certification from the Arkansas Department of Energy and Environment, Division of Environmental Quality in accordance with Section 401(a)(1) of the Clean Water Act. Upon completion of the comment period and a public hearing, if held, a determination relative to water quality certification will be made. Evidence of this water quality certification or waiver of the right to certify must be submitted prior to the issuance of a Corps of Engineers permit.
In accordance with 33 CFR 325.2(b)(1)(ii), the Corps has determined the reasonable period of time for the certifying agency to act upon the certification request is 60 days unless the district engineer determines a shorter or longer period is reasonable for the state to act.
This public notice serves as notification to the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) pursuant to section 401(a)(2) of the Clean Water Act for neighboring jurisdiction review and begins the 30-day clock for USEPA to notify affected states.
Cultural Resources. A Corps staff archeologist will evaluate the proposal for compliance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, including identification and evaluation of cultural resources potentially impacted by the proposal's implementation in waters of the United States. The District Engineer invites responses to this public notice from Native American Nations or tribal governments; Federal, State, and local agencies; historical and archeological societies; and other parties likely to have knowledge of or concerns with historic properties in the area.
Endangered Species. Our preliminary determination is that the proposed activity will not affect listed Endangered Species or their critical habitat. A copy of this notice is being furnished to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and appropriate state agencies and constitutes a request to those agencies for information on whether any listed or proposed‑to‑be‑listed endangered or threatened species may be present in the area which would be affected by the proposed activity.
Floodplain. We are providing copies of this notice to appropriate floodplain officials in accordance with 44 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 60 (Floodplain Management Regulations Criteria for Land Management and Use) and Executive Order 11988 on Floodplain Management.
Section 404(b)(1) Guidelines. The evaluation of activities to be authorized under this permit, which involves the discharge of dredged or fill material will include application of guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency, under authority of Section 404(b) of the Clean Water Act. These guidelines are contained in 40 Code of Federal CFR 230.
Public Involvement. Any interested party is invited to submit to the above-listed POC written comments or objections relative to the proposed work on or before February 28, 2022. Substantive comments, both favorable and unfavorable, will be accepted and made a part of the record and will receive full consideration in determining whether this work would be in the public interest. The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefit, which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal, must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people.
The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.
Any person may request in writing within the comment period specified in this notice that a public hearing be held to consider this application. Requests for public hearings shall state, with particularity, the reasons for holding a public hearing. The District Engineer will determine if the issues raised are substantial and whether a hearing is needed for making a decision.
NOTE: The mailing list for this Public Notice is arranged by state and county(s) where the project is located and includes any addressees who have asked to receive copies of all public notices. Please discard notices that are not of interest to you. If you have no need for any of these notices, please advise us so that your name can be removed from the mailing list.
Approximate Coordinates of Project Center
Latitude: 34.667 Longitude: -92.3476
UTM Zone: 15N North: 559773 East: 3836309