Druid Lake Dam Slope Repair: Trees to be removed for slope stabilization

Dept. of Public Works press release header

Baltimore City Department of Public Works Director Rudolph S. Chow, P.E., today announced that on Tuesday, October 1, 2019, DPW contract workers will begin to restore the slope at the Druid Lake Dam. This work will involve the removal of 13 so-called “volunteer” trees - vegetation which has self-seeded on the base of the dam. This work will be complete in approximately 6 weeks.

Trees are not permitted along earthen dams as they can cause destabilization of the soil. In 2013 the City removed 450 trees from the dam, near the same area.

The Druid Lake Dam is constructed of clay and other soils. Its stability depends on the earth remaining stable. Tree roots reach well into the soil and loosen it, causing slope failure and the possibility of leakage and even dam failure. Such vegetation is not permitted under federal and state statutes.

Tree removal work will take place along the southeast section of the dam, which runs along Druid Park Lake Drive. Once the trees are removed, the contractor, Environmental Quality Resources LLC, will reinforce the soil, and restore stability to the slope. Grass will then be planted.

Traffic: Work on the Druid Lake Dam slope will be done from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in order to minimize disruption to rush hour traffic. Westbound traffic, emerging from the I-83 exit onto Druid Lake Drive, will be reduced to one lane at the dam.

Druid Lake dates back 150 years when the Baltimore City Council appropriated funds to build this drinking water reservoir. The lake was created by the construction of the earthen dam, 119 feet high and 750 feet long. At the time of its completion it was the largest such dam in the country. It still is a marvel of engineering as evidenced by its designation as a National Historic Civil Engineering landmark.

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Jeffrey Raymond
Kurt Kocher
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The Baltimore City Department of Public Works supports the health, environment, and economy of our City and region by cleaning our neighborhoods and waterways and providing its customers with safe drinking water and sustainable energy practices.