Friends of Baker Park applied for and received a grant from the Chesapeake Bay Trust for $30,000 for the design of a storm water mitigation plan for Culler Lake. The award was announced in late 2012, and in early 2013 Friends of Baker Park signed two agreements to begin pursuing completion of a design in 2013. First, and after careful consideration of several design firms and their proposals, the Friends selected Frederick Seibert & Associates, Inc. of Hagerstown, MD, as the design firm. Second, and with thanks to the firm for its ongoing pro-bono support, the Friends agreed to hire Morgan-Keller as a project planning advisor to assist with technical elements of the design planning and building process. Friends of Baker Park Board Member Michael Paskowsky is serving as overall project leader.

Under the terms of the grant, a ready-to-build design must be completed in 2013. Frederick Seibert & Associates, Inc. has provided three conceptual plans to the Friends of Baker Park Board, which after a meeting with the Board yielded a plan that drew upon the ideas presented. This plan, which was posted at the recent Green Neighbor Forum for attendees to see, has subsequently been shared with City of Frederick staff prior to being presented to the City Recreation and Parks commission in March.

“The importance of this generous Chesapeake Bay Trust grant in providing the catalyst for development of the storm water mitigation plan cannot be overstated,” said Friends of Baker Park President Kathy Fay, adding, “These funds, together with the expertise of Frederick Seibert and Morgan Keller, will allow us to create a plan that will dramatically improve the quality of the water entering Culler Lake from storm sewers, water already in Culler Lake, and water being pumped into Culler Lake from Carroll Creek, as well as water draining from the lake into Carroll Creek and eventually into the Monocacy River and the Chesapeake Bay.” Fay also noted that this project will help the City of Frederick in meeting its storm water discharge goals. “Our next step is raising the funds necessary to build the design,“ Fay concluded, “and we have started working with a range of residents, organizations, and agencies at the City, County, and State level to raise these monies.”