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Protecting Northern Michigan's ​Water Resources

Road & Stream Crossings

Road Stream CrossingRoad/Stream Crossing (RSX) Restoration

Road/Stream Crossings (RSX) that are improperly designed or installed, structurally failing, or no longer accommodate current stream conditions affect stream health. They can affect stream hydrology, prevent fish and other aquatic organisms from reaching up-and downstream reaches, increase water temperatures, and are sources of nutrients, sediments, bacteria, heavy metals, and other nonpoint source pollutants. In Northern Michigan, sediments pose the greatest threat to rivers and streams. Sedimentation can adversely impact fish and aquatic organisms by degrading their habitat and reducing water quality. 

Road/Stream Crossing Inventories
RSX inventories serve as a useful watershed management tool. They help identify sediment pollution entering surface waters from poorly designed, maintained, or aging stream crossing infrastructure. Inventories also reveal fish passage barriers due to perched culverts, as well as altered stream hydrology from inadequately designed or installed crossings.

After a RSX inventory is completed, the Watershed Council prepares a summary of the inventory results that will highlight the priority sites where attention is needed most due to their current conditions and subsequent threat to water quality. The report also allows us to look for funding to help road commissions offset the cost of RSX improvements.  

Click here for a list of completed Road Stream Crossing Inventories

Road/Stream Crossing Projects