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SHA is one of the agency partners that developed the Watershed Resources Registry (the application functions best in Google Chrome), an online GIS tool that helps identify the best opportunities to protect, restore and conserve high quality resources and improve stormwater management. The Registry represents a collaborative agency partnership in Maryland that fosters program integration. The tool screens for preferred actions helping SHA analyze and score areas on a scale of one to five stars based on multi-resource benefits for restoration and/or preservation. Local, State and Federal agencies as well as other stakeholders are able to work from the same data and priorities using the Registry. All users, including the public, can use the interactive features, producing site maps and other tools for critical decision-making.

The map below shows the output from the riparian preservation analysis model. All eight analyses use zone scores coded one through five stars, with five stars, or deep red, representing the best opportunity that would likely provide the most multi-resource benefits, or to put in simpler terms, “the most bang for your buck!” The five star sites are sites that scored more points with the Technical Advisory Committee, an active multi-agency committee of regulatory and resource agencies that developed the tool. These are the same agencies that review projects and provide permits and/or environmental approvals. In a sense, we’re on the same page before we start coordinating at the project level.

In addition to viewing the analysis model outputs, the tool allows for viewing other data and comparing sites so that you can target the best opportunity to meet your needs while taking full advantage of other watershed benefits at any given location. Recently, the Registry was used to find mitigation sites for the MD 4 Thomas Johnson Bridge NEPA Planning Study, the MD 198 NEPA Planning Study and the I-795 at Dolfield Boulevard NEPA Planning Study. SHA also uses the Registry to identify sites for stewardship projects and to support the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load efforts.

For more information, please visit the Watershed Resources Registry page on the AASHTO Innovation Initiative website