This letter is in response to the utilization of the Silt-Saver Belted Silt Retention Filter (BSRF) system on the Riverwalk of Highlands development site located in Highlands, North Carolina. McGill Associates was contracted by Riverwalk to help mitigate existing impacts to the Cullasaja River. McGill Associates did not design the original sediment and erosion control plans, and became involved with the project after the Town of Highlands issued several Notice of Violations (NOVs) on the development site.
One particular area of interest was the discharge of sediment laden and turbid waters directly to the Cullasaja River which is designated as Trout waters. The mitigation plan for these impacts included adding sediment basins, adding check dams, adding turf reinforcement matting, stabilizing the site, and utilizing BSRF.
The BSRF was particularly effective in minimizing the sediment/turbidity plume that was visible in the Cullasaja River. Prior to installing the BSRF, the BMPs being utilized included traditional wire backed silt fence and straw bales. The properly installed BSRF system is more effective than the wire backed silt fence that was installed per the original set of erosion control plans and is still providing effective sediment removal from the discharge to the Cullasaja River.