Rain Garden for the Grinnell Natural Area

Rain Garden for the Grinnell Natural Area

Project Lead: Jaewon Saw

Project Sponsor: Environmental Health and Safety

TGIF Grant: $1,986

Project Theme: Habitat Restoration and Native Landscaping

Application Submission

Project Description: When water flows down impervious surfaces such as pavements and parking lots, various urban pollutants accumulate and wash into the water table. The Low Impact Development (LID) approach tackles this problem by adopting the site’s natural hydrology to control the stormwater at the source. As an LID design structure, a rain garden consists of trenches, berms, swales and curb openings that channel the rainwater into its basin. The captured water percolates, taken up by the plants of the garden which break down and remove the pollutants. Controlling the quality and volume of stormwater runoff conserves the local water resource and prevents the erosion of the surrounding infrastructure. Building a rain garden in the Grinnell Natural Area protects the Strawberry Creek – the central waterway of the campus.

Project Goals: 

  1. Inspire passersby to adopt sustainable landscaping and irrigation practices
  2. Encourage on-campus student activism and volunteering
  3. Improve the water quality of the Strawberry Creek
  4. Lower peak flows during a rain event to prevent the erosion of creek banks
  5. Restore the native flora and fauna (e.g. California Roach Minnow)

Final Report 

Final Poster