We've delivered workshops to help homeowners reduce their stormwater runoff and protect their properties from flooding. We’ve also completed demonstration projects like rain gardens and the removal of asphalt. We love advocating for green infrastructure projects like bioswales and rain gardens on individual properties. However, we’ve recently embarked on a new project which will help us affect stormwater management on a municipal level. Soak it Up Ontario is a new project from our friends at Green Communities Canada. They’re helping us make connections with key stakeholders in our community so we can have an open dialogue about green infrastructure projects in Kingston. It’s been an educational and energizing experience to speak with city and utilities staff; storm sewers, sanitary sewers and municipal water management is an incredibly complex system which relies on dozens employees from several departments, hundreds of kilometers of infrastructure and a great deal of money. When we started this project, I thought we would have a difficult time “selling” green infrastructure to city and utility staff. In fact, the complete opposite has been true: those who work on the front lines are already well aware of groundbreaking (pun intended) green infrastructure technology that could make our systems more efficient. They’re also aware of the limitations which exist in the current system and how implementing green infrastructure projects will be a challenge. We're excited and encouraged by the reception and we're eager to continue the dialogue.
We’re continuing our talks with individuals from the city, the community and the construction industry. We’ll keep you updated on how this project is going and this fall we’ll be publishing a report and a stormwater action plan based on our findings.