design

Think Green Tools Can Better Public Space? Enter the 'Play Space' Competition!

A rain garden and porous pavement enhanced this schoolyard in South Philadelphia. Credit: Philadelphia Water
A rain garden and porous pavement enhanced this schoolyard in South Philadelphia. Credit: Philadelphia Water

Earlier this year, we released Transforming Philadelphia’s Schoolyards, a guide to enhancing school play spaces with green stormwater infrastructure, made with the help of the non-profit Community Design Collaborative (CDC).

The CDC folks are once again working to show how green stormwater tools can be a valuable addition to public spaces—and especially to spaces geared toward Philadelphia’s children.

Congratulations to Stanley's True Value Hardware

Stanley’s True Value Hardware: Environmental Dedication, Excellent Design

It’s official. PWD named the first Stormwater Pioneer—Stanley’s Hardware in Roxborough. Congratulations to third-generation business owners Mark and Joe Jaconski and their stormwater management design team from Ruggiero Plante Land Design.  At today’s dedication, we recognize the owners and designers of Stanley’s Hardware as role models for business owners and private developers who want to reduce stormwater runoff from their properties. “If everyone does their part, it’s much easier for the City and the Water Department to deal with stormwater,” says Mark.
 
The Jackonski’s built a new, larger store on the site of their existing business in Roxborough.  As part of the project, they were required to meet PWD’s Stormwater Regulations. In addition to doing a fantastic job meeting the regulations, they also overcame several challenges: keeping the store open while building a new one, working around bedrock at various locations on the property, and protecting neighboring properties.

The stormwater solution developed by Ruggiero Plante Land Design includes two underground infiltration basins that collect runoff from the store’s roof and parking area.  To avoid subsurface bedrock, one of the basins is split into two storage beds hydraulically connected with HDPE pipes.  Above ground, the parking lot drains directly into a rain garden through openings in the curb.  The rain garden collects and filters the runoff through plants and engineered soils.

An elaborate, seven-phase construction plan allowed the existing store to remain open until the new one was ready.  Now business is booming.

“We’re hoping to keep trash, debris and other pollution out of the water so that everyone can enjoy a clean river.  If we can play a small part in making the environment better for the next generation, that’s a major plus for us,” says Joe.

Learn more about Stormwater Pioneers.

Introducing Stormwater Pioneers!

More and more Philadelphia businesses are using green infrastructure to manage stormwater runoff on their properties. Whether required by PWD regulations or encouraged through incentives, private property owners recognize the important role they play in reducing pollution in our streams when it rains. They are also setting a higher bar with excellent, cost-effective designs.

That’s why PWD recently launched Stormwater Pioneers, a program to highlight the work of innovative business owners and design teams. Stormwater Pioneers acknowledges the very best in stormwater management on private property. The program showcases innovation, excellence, the ability to overcome technical challenges and a true dedication by the property owners, developers, engineers and designers to reduce stormwater runoff.

The first Stormwater Pioneer is Stanley’s True Value Hardware, which has operated as a family-run business in Roxborough for 66 years. After decades of working in a cramped store, brothers Mark and Joseph Jaconski decided to build a new store on their current property. The construction of an expanded facility required the brothers to meet PWD’s Stormwater Regulations. They also decided to protect the environment for the next generation. Their solution was a comprehensive design that utilizes a beautiful rain garden and three underground infiltration basins, which capture runoff and infiltrate it into the ground. 

The property at 5555 Ridge Avenue will be dedicated on Thursday, November 20th at 2 pm. Join Councilman Curtis Jones, Water Department Deputy Commissioner Chris Crockett, the Roxborough Development Corporation and the Central Roxborough Civic Association as they honor the Jaconski brothers and Ruggerio Plante Land Design for their part in protecting the health of Philadelphia’s rivers through excellent site design.

Help the Water Department Uncover the Green!

Calling all college students for our upcoming design competition! We need creative minds to help us capture Philadelphia’s vision for cleaner waterways and greener neighborhoods! Our new Uncover the Green competition focuses on both new and existing infrastructure. The goal of the competition is to create an eye-catching medallion marker that helps brand Philadelphia’s new green stormwater tools, which soak up rainwater as it runs off of sidewalks and streets throughout the City. But that’s not all! We are challenging our competition participants to delve deeper by producing a second design for new manhole covers! The winning designs for a green tool medallion and accompanying manhole cover will be placed on sidewalks and streets throughout the City for decades! Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to leave your mark on Philadelphia!

Participation in the competition is free and open to all undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in Philadelphia based colleges and universities.

Stayed tuned! More information will follow with our official competition launch in January!

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