Location: Central Minnesota
Client: Crow River Organization of Water
The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) charged local governments to develop one watershed plan to drive water resources planning, management, and project efforts within the watershed. The One Watershed, One Plan (1W1P) pilot project departs from traditional efforts guided by multiple plans and instead encourages local partners to work together to develop a collaborative water management plan that consistently and concurrently drives efforts in the same direction.
HEI worked with partners in the North Fork Crow River Watershed to help develop this groundbreaking project.
As with any multi-stakeholder effort, the North Fork Crow 1W1P planning effort faced a complicated coordination and communication process. Recognizing this, HEI came into the planning process with an effective project management plan.
The planning committee solicited input from the public through a series of local meetings attended by area landowners and producers. The meetings helped gain consensus with the diverse group even though these projects are often contentious with differing goals or opinions.
One unique feature local partners desired for their 1W1P was implementing region report cards to highlight differences in landscapes and priorities.
To do this, HEI piloted the use of targeted implementation profiles to provide a snapshot of the condition of locally important resources in each planning region, where prioritized implementation should take place to deliver the biggest bang for the buck.
As the project progressed, HEI continued to gather watershed information, set measurable goals, and ultimately wrote a plan with targeted implementation strategies. The team used the Prioritize, Target, and Measure Application (PTMApp)
to create output products to help partners target the best locations to place best management practices (BMPs).
The watershed is home to nearly 3,000 farms. Because of the large volume of agricultural producers within the plan area, HEI focused on developing a land stewardship concept to incorporate into the plan.
Our vision is to remove implementation barriers by incorporating sustainability into the watershed planning process.
Outcomes will include:
- Effective solutions that incorporate both land stewardship and structural conservation practices
- Established expectations and boundaries to achieve water quality goals
The final plan was approved in the summer of 2018. View it here