Corsica River Restoration Effort

The Corsica River 

Photo courtesy of Cal Gray III

The Corsica River winds through rural Queen Anne's County and the Town of Centreville before entering the Chester River, which in turn feeds the Chesapeake Bay. The river and its watershed are home to fishing, waterfowl hunting and kayaking. It has been described as "strikingly beautiful," but the Corsica does not meet important water quality standards. In 2005, an effort was launched to restore the river. A recently released report marks the progress that has been made.

The Corsica Targeted Watershed Initiative Progress Report: 2005-2011​​ documents the work done in partnership by MDE, DNR, and the Town of Centreville. The achievements include:

  • Watershed Restoration Action Strategy (WRAS): A comprehensive plan implemented to serve as the road map to help guide the restoration and protection activities to date.
  • Approximately 700 water quality and habitat projects have been completed.
  • Concentrations of both nitrogen and phosphorous have shown decreasing trends in the non-tidal portion of the Corsica Watershed at Three Bridges Branch and Gravel Run since 2005.
  • Upgrades to the Centreville wastewater treatment facility have reduced nitrogen and phosphorous pollution to the river by 50,770 and 4,260 pounds per year.
  • To date, 88.3 acres of wetlands have been restored in the watershed, which is above the original goal of 50 acres.

The Corsica Watershed Initiative started in 2005 with specific goals established to move toward the restoration of the Corsica River. Now, seven years into the project, the original goals have been revisited to see what has worked, apply lessons learned, and adapt to move forward with the continued restoration of the Corsica River. Looking forward through the next five years, some of the 2012-2016 goals include:

  • Maintaining 5,500 acres annually of agricultural buffers.
  • Implementing 20 acres of new wetland creation.
  • Adding an additional 100 rain gardens and 40 rain barrels.
  • A new street sweeper program, the goal is to remove 50 tons per year of sediment and debris that can protect runoff into the watershed.


Shoreline Restoration Project 

About 1,475 linear feet of living shoreline
has been restored or enhanced.

Related information concerning the Corsica River

For more information regarding the Corsica River Targeted Initiative, please contact Quentin Forrest of Maryland Department of the Environment by phone at 443-482-2708 or e-mail at

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