Archived Story

Creek requires attention

Published 5:21pm Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Some folks may think the attention paid to Jack’s Creek — its appearance and its role as a drainage system — by the City Council is unwarranted considering other issues the city faces.

Count us among those who disagree with that point of view. Yes, there are other issues that need addressing by the City Council. The Jack’s Creek issue deserves — and demands — attention, too.

Jack’s Creek meanders through southeastern Washington, eventually emptying into the Pamlico River near the former National Guard Armory and Havens Gardens. The creek flows by the city’s Veterans Memorial Park. The creek flows by several residences. City residents and visitors alike pass by the creek each day. What they see sometimes is not a pretty sight.

Often, the creek and its banks are littered with soda bottles, fast-food wrappers and boxes and other discarded items. Perhaps people should remember that Jack’s Creek is a waterway, not a trash receptacle. Perhaps the city — with help from some volunteers — can do a better job of keeping Jack’s Creek clean. It would be great to see just waterfowl floating on the creek instead of litter.

As for the duckweed that thrives in the creek during the hotter months of the year, perhaps being more aggressive with the spraying process now being used would help keep the creek’s surface looking like it’s home to an unsightly green slime or an out-of-control algae bloom. It’s OK for frogs to be green, but too much duckweed is too much green for Jack’s Creek.

As for Jack’s Creek serving as a major drainage system in the city, perhaps the city should revisit the idea of dredging the creek or doing other work to facilitate drainage, especially during and after heavy rains, tropical storms and hurricanes. Of course, when a major storm — the 100-year-flood storm — hits Washington, there’s going to be flooding. But anything the city can do to make Jack’s Creek drain as fast as possible after such a storm should be done.

Other drainage issues — the Iron Creek subdivision problems come to mind — throughout the city also need addressing, but keep in mind that Jack’s Creek is the most visible drainage system with the most visible discharge point into the Pamlico River.

The city does face double-digit unemployment. The city faces a decision concerning its waterfront docks. The city could use more affordable housing and first-time homeowners. There are enough issues the city needs addressing.

Jack’s Creek is one of those issues.

And the city — elected officials, administration and staff — should be commended for searching for the right solutions to improve Jack’s Creek aesthetically and functionally.

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