Kent Lake watershed map
Kent Lake watershed map

The Kent Lake subwatershed covers 156 square miles in southwestern Oakland County, extending from the headwaters of the Huron River downstream to the Kent Lake impoundment on the Huron River in Kensington MetroPark.

HRWC facilitated the development of a watershed management plan for this Oakland County watershed from 2000 to 2002, and worked with partners to implement priority activities such as two stormwater best management practice retrofits.

Following a two-year planning process that involved local communities, county agencies, key business interests, citizens groups, and other stakeholders, the Kent Lake Subwatershed Management Plan was approved by MDEQ in August 2002. The Plan sets forth a comprehensive, long-term effort to restore and protect the water quality of the Kent Lake subwatershed with the goal of attaining the Kent Lake TMDL for non-point phosphorus pollution. Approval of the Plan by MDEQ and EPA makes the Kent Lake communities eligible to compete for implementation funds to address problems such as high nutrient loading, stream bank stabilization, soil erosion, and other activities identified in the Plan.

The Plan includes the following list of prioritized subwatershed concerns as developed by the working group:

  1. Excessive impervious surfaces
  2. Wetland loss
  3. Impaired septic systems
  4. Need for enhanced watershed-friendly planning
  5. Illicit connections

Sources and causes associated with these priority concerns are presented in the Plan, along with a list of twelve goals and objectives. An Action Matrix identifies specific potential actions that are recommended to achieve the goals and objectives. The actions range from managerial practices (e.g., new and revised ordinances) to structural practices (constructed wetlands and wet detention basins) to vegetative practices (e.g., vegetated riparian buffers) to improving monitoring programs and data collection. The combination of actions taken will be determined by each community based on cost, acceptability, and sustainability.

HRWC has completed two MDEQ-funded grants to implement some of the Plan’s recommendations. These grants have served to improve public education on watershed issues, identify opportunities for stormwater BMP retrofits (which have subsequently led to two other grants now in progress for constructing the retrofits), and work with local governments on improving local codes and ordinances.

How can you help or get involved with implementing the Kent Lake Subwatershed Management Plan?

  • Let us know if you know of any areas in particular need of streambank restoration, stormwater controls (such as detention ponds, infiltration basins, ect.) or if you area a property owner who would like to restore wetlands on your land. We can help you create a site plan and search for funding.
  • If you are interested in getting involved in a citizens group, we may be able to connect you with other interested people.