Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection awarded $582,000 to the Nine Mile Run Watershed Association to upgrade two Wilkinsburg parking lots.
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection awarded $582,000 to the Nine Mile Run Watershed Association to install natural drainage with rain gardens and bioswales in two Wilkinsburg parking lots.
According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, underground storm water storage tanks will be installed and gardens, bioswales and storage tanks will catch runoff. The runoff typically dumps into the Monongahela River.
The drainage project will capture more than 3 million gallons of rain annually, reported the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. The municipal parking lots are located along South and Wallace avenues.
The Nine Mile Run Watershed Association houses urban ecology initiatives, including the largest urban stream restoration in the U.S. completed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, according to the association’s website. The goal of these projects is to directly involve the community in helping to improve the health of the watershed.
The project is a continuation of an ongoing effort to protect Nine Mile Run, which collects storm water from Wilkinsburg, Edgewood, Frick Park, and parts of Squirrel Hill, East Hills and Penn Hills.
“This project will greatly expand upon efforts to improve our storm water management while beautifying the borough,” said Wilkinsburg Mayor Marita Garrett, reported the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
The community outreach and design phase of the project is planned from May to December 2021 and bidding and construction is anticipated to begin in 2022.
According to Wilkinsburg Council President Pamela Macklin, the project will complement the borough’s commitment to reducing storm water flows, reported the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. In 2010, Wilkinsburg officials used a $500,000 grant to work alongside Western Pennsylvania Conservancy to plant nearly 500 trees throughout the borough to help reduce storm water runoff, stop stream bank erosion and stop storm sewer overloads.