On this week’s episode we hear from Ruth Kelly, Second Ward Commissioner for the City of Grand Rapids, Michigan, who discusses Water Quality Islands, the bio retention islands on Plainfield Avenue in the Creston neighborhood.
Storm water is a major concern for the environment, especially in West Michigan where it is the leading pollutant in the Grand River and the Great Lakes. The Creston Neighborhood and Business Association has implemented seven bio retention islands, or Water Quality Islands, within the neighborhood to capture and filter rain water. The islands can be found in the Plainfield corridor between Leonard and Anne St.
The West Michigan Environmental Action Council has a campaign, 15 to the River, highlighting the point that within 15 minutes, water landing in a storm sewer enters into the Grand River. With one inch of rainfall the Water Quality Islands are to capture 90,000 gallons of rainwater, preventing it from carrying pollutants to the Grand River. In addition to the positive environmental impact, the islands will bring about other stimuli as well. For economics, they add beauty and revitalization to the Creston neighborhood, increasing investment and property values. The islands also foster increased safety for pedestrians as they slow traffic. With safer streets, the islands create a sense of community pride as well, serving a social purpose to the surrounding areas.
To listen to this episode, click here.
“A Watershed Moment” is a weekly radio program focused on environmental news and happenings in West Michigan, plus solutions for living a greener life. Broadcast on WYCE-FM 88.1 on Tuesdays at 8:30am and 5:30pm, this program is produced by Grand Rapids Community Media Center and West Michigan Environmental Action Council.