Brook Run video

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

Check out our video on part of the rain garden installation process on YouTube! Brook Run Neighborhood Rain Garden Project

Great article about our neighborhood rain garden project! Click here to read

On Wednesday, Brook Run was highlighted at this year’s Ohio Stormwater Conference as a tour stop the day before conference sessions. That same morning, Franklin Soil and Water dedicated Brook Run as their first Water Quality Partnership Neighborhood. Westerville Mayor Kathy Cocuzzi, CORGI members, and partners of the project joined the group during the morning, and it was featured on NBC4 that evening with interviews from Brook Run residents, the mayor, and Derek Schlea (the OSU graduate student working on monitoring).

Thanks to everyone for making this project such a success! We look forward to presenting the project and monitoring results at today’s Ohio Stormwater Conference in the “Monitoring, Modeling, and Research” track!

Right-of-way gardens during the rain

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

Even with all the rain we’ve had, the rain gardens in the right-of-ways at Brook Run are functioning beautifully. April 2011 was the wettest on record, but during an early May rain the first rain garden cells were still filling up and infiltrating. Once the first cell was filled, the water bypassed it and flowed to the next one.

Upcoming Event

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District will be dedicating our Brook Run neighborhood rain garden project as their first Water Quality Partnership Neighborhood on May 11th at 10am. Special speakers will be attending, as well as media, to help highlight the project’s successes so far.

New preliminary data is showing an 80% reduction in storm water. We’re looking forward to the new growth that has started in all of the rain gardens, and hopefully to even better data with the plants’ maturity!

Wow! Great news! Our flow meter and rain gauge data is showing that the residential and right-of-way gardens have reduced the amount of storm water in the Brook Run subdivisions by 60%! We were anticipating a 55% reduction based on the amount of impervious surface. Infiltration rates should increase every year as the plants continue to flourish. We’re very excited to get such great data!

Water tests & gardens successful

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

All 5 right-of-way rain gardens are complete in the Brook Run neighborhood. They have received a small amount of sod to help filter out sediments and stone to help direct the water. Residents have already observed the rain gardens working from a couple small rains.

Yesterday, Franklin Soil and Water, OSU, and Westerville performed tests to help calibrate the flow meters in the storm water system and recorded data from the pressure transducers in the sampling wells. During the testing, water was sent down the street and into one of the gardens. In one of the 3-chambered gardens, water filled up in the first chamber to 3″, overflow was directed to the next chamber, and a small amount flowed into the third chamber. After about half an hour, the 3″ ponding water had drained completely through the garden.

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Right-of-way gardens update

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

Three of the five right-of-way rain gardens were finished being planted today. The slopes of the sides were seeded, and curb cuts are being finished up. The next two will be planted, then the gardens will receive a small sod planting to help filter sediment as storm water enters the gardens from the roadway. The white pipes in the gardens are sampling wells to monitor the level of water that enters the garden, and they will each have a pressure transducer in the bottom of those wells to help gather the information. The gardens should all be completed by mid next week!

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Brook Run right-of-way rain gardens

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

Excavation, curb cutting, and soil replacing have begun for the right-of-way rain gardens in the Brook Run neighborhood in Westerville. Each garden will have a topsoil/compost mix added to replace the poor soil that was in the right-of-way area. Each rain garden will collect road drainage that normally runs directly to the storm water system that leads to the nearby creek.  The rain garden preparation should be completed this week, then planting will start next week.

The City of Westerville, Watershed Organic Lawn Care, and Tamarack Excavating, Inc. are carrying out the curb cuts, soil preparation, and excavation, respectively. The Franklin County Master Gardeners have volunteered to help maintain the gardens after they are finished.

This aspect of the project is funded through a Research Grant from the Ohio Water Development Authority, with The Ohio State University and Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District as the co-applicants. .

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As of Friday July 23rd, all of the residential rain gardens are complete. The downspouts were unhooked from the storm water system in the neighborhood and directed into the gardens. Monarchs have already been seen on some of the wildflowers!

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The next step in the project is to install the rain gardens in the right-of-way areas throughout the neighborhood. There will be 6 rain gardens that collect storm water runoff from the roadways (which also contains the rest of the downspouts that weren’t added into the residential gardens). Construction should begin in the next couple weeks.

Monitoring has been a challenge, however 3 v-notched weirs will be installed in the main outlet, the cul-de-sac outlet, and the control neighborhood outlet to coincide with the installation of the right-of-way rain gardens. The hope is to establish a definitive reduction of storm water runoff through the use of rain gardens by comparing data from the control neighborhood. Other monitoring tools will be used in the right-of-way gardens, such as pressure transducer and lysimeter-type instrumentation.

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