Allen Creek operates as a storm drain more than as a stream. Allen Creek Drain empties directly into the Huron River below Argo Dam. Due to the highly impervious
nature of the creekshed, water quality at the outlet of Allen Creek Drain is extremely poor.
About Allen Creekshed
Allen Creek is of historic importance in Ann Arbor, because it bears the name of John Allen, the first European to settle permanently in this area and bequeath the name of Ann Arbor on the area. The city developed around Allen Creek, and industrial activities and residential growth degraded the quality of this once pastoral creek. Flooding was also a major issue, as flood events caused a great deal of damage to the infrastructure along the creek banks. Allen Creek became interred for gradually increasing stretches, such that today it runs almost entirely underground and operates more as a storm drain than a real stream in most areas. Flooding is still an issue in the Allen Creekshed, and water quality at the outlet of Allen Creek Drain at the Huron River, is extremely degraded. Allen Creek is not monitored through the Adopt-a-Stream Program.
What the City of Ann Arbor is doing
- The Allen Creek Stormwater Initiative is a community response to pollution, flooding and the unique challenges we face in Allen's Creekshed. The initiatives will identify and implement cost-effective, practical solutions. Individual efforts such as rain gardens / rain barrels will be explored, as well as infrastructure projects: bio-infiltration, constructed wetlands, porous pavement, mechanical treatment, and above and below-ground detention. This project is led by the City of Ann Arbor and the Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner.
- Allen Creek Greenway Task Force Report (pdf) - This 2007 report outlines goals and objectives for establishing open space along the general location of the Allen Creek storm drain.
For More Information
- City of Ann Arbor Allen Creek Greenway Task Force
- Washtenaw County Allen Creek Stormwater Initiative
- Allen Creek Greenway Conservancy
Updated December 1, 2009