News Archive

Public Meetings – Montpelier Confluence River Park

Tuesday, November 6th, 2018

The Vermont River Conservancy welcomes members of the public to hear about the Confluence River Park in the heart of downtown Montpelier. This park is on the One Taylor Street parcel, at the confluence of the North Branch and main stems of the Winooski River. VRC has contracted with Milone & MacBroom to create a Feasibility Study & Conceptual Design for the park. Come hear about the process and timeline, offer input to VRC and the park designers, and share your priorities for a Confluence River Park. We currently have two times on the calendar for these public meetings:

-Thursday, November 8th at 7:00 – 8:00 pm in City Hall, as part of the Montpelier Conservation Commission meeting.

-Tuesday, November 13th at 6:40 – 7:30 pm at the Police Station conference room, as part of the Montpelier Parks Commission meeting.

If you are unable to make these public sessions, we welcome your input via email – please contact richarda@vermontriverconservancy.org

 

VRC Announces Request for Proposals for Confluence River Park

Wednesday, September 26th, 2018

The Vermont River Conservancy announces a Request for Proposals for a Feasibility Study and Conceptual Design for Montpelier’s Confluence River Park. VRC will be accepting Proposals until 5:00 pm on Thursday, October 11th.  Please contact Richarda Ericson at richarda@vermontriverconservancy with questions. Questions will be accepted until Friday, October 5th. The RFP can be found here:

VRC RFP Confluence River Park

Welcome to our new Board Member, Matisse!

Wednesday, August 15th, 2018

Matisse Bustos Hawkes, VRC’s Vice Chair, is a strategic communications professional with two decades of experience serving the arts, non-profit and social justice communities. Most recently she served as Associate Director of Communications and Engagement at WITNESS, the human rights organization founded by musician and activist Peter Gabriel that supports people worldwide to use video and technology for social change. In 2019 she founded Otro Lado Communications which partners with filmmakers, human rights advocates, journalists, technologists, philanthropists, and nonprofit organizations to develop creative and effective communications strategies.

 

A native of Southern California, Matisse made her way to Vermont via New York City, and lives in Middlesex with her family. She enjoys as much time at reservoirs, lakes and swimming holes as the short, but beautiful, Vermont summers allow. She joined the VRC board in 2018.

River Gala Tickets On Sale Now!

Monday, July 30th, 2018

We are excited to invite you to the Vermont River Conservancy’s second annual River Gala!  Tickets are on sale now at Seven Days!  Join us on Saturday, August 25th, 5-8pm for good conversations, delicious food from Bon Temps and Vermont Creamery, and a beautiful evening at the Knoll Farm in Waitsfield, Vt.

Get out of your swim suits and pull on your fancy duds for this fundraising celebration of Vermont Rivers and the work the Vermont River Conservancy and others are doing statewide to protect them.  Remember that the gala sold out last year, so get your tickets early!  We look forward to spending our evening with you.

Save the Date for VRC’s 2nd Annual River Gala!

Friday, June 29th, 2018

Please save the date for the Vermont River Conservancy’s 2nd Annual River Gala!

Take in the beautiful scenery at Knoll Farm and celebrate Vermont rivers and the work the Vermont River Conservancy and others are doing statewide to protect them. This year will feature the delicious food of Bon Temps Gourmet, and different cheeses from the unique and tasty Vermont Creamery. Tickets will go on sale soon! Last year this event SOLD OUT, so we hope you will get your tickets early for this year’s River Gala. We look forward to seeing you there!

VRC Welcomes Summer Stewardship Intern

Wednesday, June 13th, 2018

VRC is happy to welcome Summer Stewardship Intern Eva Ryan to join the team and help monitor our protected sites during the summer months of 2018. Prior to working toward her Masters in Environmental Law and Policy from Vermont Law School, Eva received her BA from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, in Environmental Policy, Institutions and Behavior. The areas of study in which Eva is passionate about are the issues surrounding water quality and quantity and how these issues intersect with agriculture, food systems and their social and economic impacts. Eva currently lives in South Royalton, and in her free time enjoys being outdoors hiking and swimming with her pup Loki, or working in her garden.

VRC Receives EPA Grant to Restore Floodplain

Friday, April 27th, 2018

VRC is in line to receive a $200,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Brownfields Program to restore a 12-acre parcel along the Whetstone Brook in Brattleboro to a functioning floodplain. “Removing contaminated soils from the “Sawdust Alley” property in downtown Brattleboro is a crucial first step in the restoration of a 12-acre flood plain on Whetstone Brook that will alleviate flood damage to downstream properties,” said Steve Libby, Executive Director of the Vermont River Conservancy. Read more here.

VRC Works With Partners to Protect Land Along the White River

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2018

Below is an excerpt from an original blog post by the White River Partnership found here

The Vermont River Conservancy recently partnered with the White River Partnership (WRP), Vermont River Management Program, and 4 private landowners to conserve 41 acres of floodplain along the White River in Hancock and Stockbridge.

The 14.2-acre Hancock project site is located just upstream of Hancock village, and just downstream of a 15.4-acre floodplain conserved in 2016.  Tropical Storm Irene flood waters washed across and deposited large amounts of sediment on these hay fields, highlighting the need to protect the fields for floodplain function.  In sum the 2 Hancock project sites protect active floodplain along 3,300 feet of the White River.

The 26.8-acre Stockbridge project site is located just upstream of Gaysville village and, unlike the Hancock project site, sits 30 feet above the White River.  Instead of water spreading out across the fields, flooding from Tropical Storm Irene scoured 138,000 cubic yards of material from the parcel’s streambanks.  This catastrophic erosion highlighted the parcel’s vulnerability and the need to protect it from future development.

The floodplain conservation projects prohibit future development and compensate the landowners for flood-related property loss.  Allowing the river to reconnect to these critical floodplains will reduce the speed and erosive power of flood waters before they reach the Hancock and Gaysville villages.

The WRP received a Vermont Ecosystem Restoration Program (ERP) grant to work with VRC on acquiring the permanent conservation easement.

 

Help us protect Huntington Gorge today!

Thursday, March 1st, 2018

Vermont River Conservancy and the Richmond Land Trust have a rare opportunity to conserve the historic and scenic Huntington Gorge.  These special 3.3 acres include a spectacular river gorge and waterfall formed by a narrow gap in the bedrock schist underlying the Huntington River as it flows toward its confluence with the Winooski River. Over time, flowing water has sculpted the rock walls into dramatic chutes and bowls which create stunning cascades, particularly during periods of high water. The Gorge has been a home to over a century of mills, and is a popular destination for generations of Richmond residents and visitors.

Respecting the power and beauty of Huntington Gorge is vital for visitor safety and enjoyment.  Together, with your help, Vermont River Conservancy and the Richmond Land Trust plan to improve signage and trails, maintain the current uses of the site, and manage the site in conjunction with the Lower Huntington Gorge Preserve ½ mile downstream, conserved by Richmond Land Trust in 1995.

photo credit: Lou Borie

With your support, we can ensure Huntington Gorge is well managed with signage, safe trails, and sufficient parking for visitors to safely enjoy it.  With major funding from Vermont Housing and Conservation Board and the Town of Richmond Conservation Fund secured, help us close the gap.  You can help us preserve and manage this Vermont treasure by giving a donation today!

Huntington Gorge takes my breath away every time I visit. I’m glad it can be permanently protected and managed so future generations can enjoy its beauty like I have.”

                   ~ Patty Brushett, Richmond Resident

North Branch Cascades Trail Stormwater Assessment Completed

Friday, December 1st, 2017

A stormwater reduction plan has been developed for an abandoned section of the Vermont Rt 12 road bed in Worcester and Elmore. Engineering firm Malone and Macbroom identified 20 problematic sites and designed mitigation systems to slow the velocity of runoff flow, allow for the deposition of sediments, and appropriately deliver treated stormwater to the North Branch of the Winooski River.

Identified problems included poor drainage, ruts and settling of the former roadbed, failed culverts, erosion and headcuts. Proposed solutions include removing sediment, installing sediment traps, lowering berms, improving cross drainage, filling and stabilize eroded sites and ruts, stabilizing scour, and replacing failed culverts. Work to address these sites is planned for 2018, using a mix of contractor, youth crew, and volunteer labor.

This project is part of an initiative to develop a one-mile trail along the North Branch of the Winooski River, a wild and scenic river that flows from Elmore to Montpelier. This is a scenic stretch of river with numerous cascades, waterfalls, and swimming holes. The trail will be the centerpoint of an extensive conservation effort recently completed by the Vermont Land Trust and Vermont River Conservancy. Funding for the assessment was provided by the state Ecological Restortaion Grant program and the Vermont Watershed Grants program.

 

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