Photos of the Long Island Sound

Our Plan

Watershed Projects

The Long Island Sound watershed covers more than 16,000 square miles in six states. Within our  large region,  hundreds of local watershed drain into streams and rivers, which eventually flow into the Sound. Improving the environmental quality of these local watersheds,  which often cross municipal and sometime even state boundaries, is a priority of the Long Island Sound Study in order to prevent pollution from flowing downstream. These efforts are aided by the  Long Island Sound Futures Fund, a grant program that was initiated by LISS and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. Below are examples of watershed-related  projects that have received funding since the program began in 2005. More information about each grant can be found in the grants library section of


Project: Stormwater Control Demonstration (2005)
Grantee: City of Norwalk, CT

The City of Norwalk, CT installed over 300 catch basin filters and monitored them for performance.  This filters reduced the amount of pollution, heavy metals, and hydrocarbons entering local surface waters (Norwalk Harbor) and, ultimately, Long Island Sound.  The results are being used to develop a City-wide plan for storm water management.
NFWF Grant Profile

Project: Outdoor Classroom at Hole-in-the-Wall (2006)
Grantee: Town of East Lyme, CT

The Town of East Lyme constructed a 99-space pervious parking lot, grass filter strips, catch basins, a rain garden and dry well to reduce and treat stormwater runoff and conduct real-time monitoring of weather and pollutants currently flowing from 22-acres into Long Island Sound. The lot is used as an outdoor classroom to demonstrate methods to treat runoff.  Ten different types of pervious parking lots were installed along with educational signs to inform the public.  Project partners included the East Lyme/Salem School system and Three Rivers Community College.
NFWF Grants Profile

Project: Tankerhoosen Watershed Management Plan (2007)
Grantee: Friends of the Hockanum River Linear Park of Vernon, CT

The Friends of the Hockanum River Linear Park of Vernon hired a consultant who developed the “Tankerhoosen River Watershed Management Plan,” which incorporates the EPA’s nine elements for watershed management plans guidelines.  This plan inventories environmental and land use conditions; and establishes priority actions to protect and improve the ecological integrity of the watershed.
NFWF Grant Profile
Watershed Plan

Project: Mattituck Inlet Stormwater Mitigation (2008)
Grantee: Group for the East End, Mattituck, NY

The Group for the East End replaced the surface of a public boat ramp with permeable crushed glass pavement, constructed a small treatment wetland and planted with native species, removed invasive Phragmites, and installed informational signs and public benches for public outreach and education. This project was focused on reducing nonpoint source pollution into Mattituck Inlet on Long Island. Stormwater will now enter the ground through the pavement and then flow into an area planted with wetland plants that will provide uptake of pollutants in the water. The goal is to create a public commitment to responsible and effective environmental stewardship.
NFWF Grant Profile

Project: Parks Citywide Greenroof Pilot Project (2008)
Grantee: New York City Department of Parks and Recreation

The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation installed a 16,000 square-foot green roof, the fourth largest in the City. The green roof encompasses 16 different systems utilizing tray systems, pre-vegetated modular systems, cedar planter boxes, overhead trellises, elevated planters, and a green wall. This intensive green roof is being used as a pilot demonstration area to be reproduced in other parks buildings. This project also installed a monitoring system on three of the 16 systems. Project partners included the GreenApple Corps, a job training and public service initiative focused on green-collar job training providing 18-24 year old economically-disadvantaged youth in a variety of work and learning experiences associated with the environment.
NFWF Grant Profile
Final Report

Project: Street Swale Infrastructure Initiative (2011)
Grantee: Regional Plan Association

The Regional Plan Association (RPA) installed two bioswales to detain and filter 7,700 gallons of polluted stormwater annually from the Van Wyck Expressway, near Flusing Creek in Flushing Meadows Coronoa Park. Bioswales are essentially planters that use vegetation to contain and infiltrate the intense flow of contaminants coming from the highway overpass. RPA partnered with landscape architecture firm dlandstudio to design and construct  these bioswales. The project has the support of the New York City Department of Environmental Protection. The project demonstrates that bioswales can be an effective method to reduce runoff from highways, a major source of pollution that drains into Long Island Sound. The project, designed as a pilot, has the potential to generate many more projects to reduce stormwater pollutiion. RPA and dlandstudio has identified 58 other potential sites along the Long Island Sound where the bioswales can be constructed.

NFWF Grant Profile
Final Report

Project: Western Waterfront Rain Garden Planning/Training Program (2013)
Grantee: Town of Oyster Bay

The Town of Oyster Bay installed a 500 square-foot rain garden in Oyster Bay’s Western Waterfront park to detain and filter 1,255 gallons of stormwater annually. A rain garden is a shallow, vegetated basin that captures, treats, and infiltrates polluted stormwater runoff within a day. The rain garden will capture and treat storm water runoff from a heavily used parking lot currently discharging pollutants into the Long Island Sound. Construction of this rain garden consisted of a classroom training and hands-on participation in construction of the rain garden by municipal officials/ public employees and volunteers from the surrounding communities. The goal was to train different groups in the creation and maintenance of green infrastructure practices to encourage adoption a public and private sites. Project partners included many local organizations. This project was also featured on US EPA’s Greening the Apple blog.
NFWF Grant Profile


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