Rachel Snyder Memorial Landscape Award
City of Topeka, Water Pollution Control Division
Jackson Street Stormwater Improvement Project in Topeka, KS.
The project was designed to control flooding and enhance water quality. Ultimately, the project enlarged the storm sewer under Jackson Street. It also removed one lane of traffic for four blocks to accommodate the installation of bioretention cells and accommodated a sidewalk highlighted by stamped concrete, decorative lighting and seating. A bioretention cell is a shallow basin planted with native grasses, trees, and shrubs. The cells collect stormwater and allow some of the water to be absorbed naturally by the plants and soil. Native plants like those installed along Jackson Street have extensive root systems that allow them to absorb large amounts of water and filter out pollutants in the water. They are also well adapted for survival during periods of hot, dry weather and provide habitat for wildlife such as birds, butterflies and other insects.
Urban Retrofit Jackson Street explains the history of the project.