Implementation Innovation

Source: Philadelphia Water Department

Source: Philadelphia Water Department

Not only is the Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) pursuing innovative and green stormwater management techniques and tools, but they are also thinking outside-of-the-box and coming up with innovative implementation techniques that gather community support, educate the community, increase property values, and [of course] manage stormwater.

The 2011-2012 Green City, Clean Waters (GCCW) Year-in-Review booklet does a great job of highlighting some of the innovative implementation, education, and community engagement techniques that will help guarantee the longevity and success of the GCCW program.

Here are a few of my favorites.

  • Philly Fun Fishing Fest – a great way to celebrate the return of native aquatic wildlife to our rivers and streams
  • Green City, Clean Waters Student Art Contest – this year, students were asked to illustrate how our rivers and streams become polluted and how we can work together to make them healthy
  • Philly Water’s Best Friend Competition – now in it’s third year, this fun program invites Philadelphia dogs [and their owners] to become spokesdogs [and people] and encourage everyone to clean-up their companion animals’ pet waste. See my post “Scoop that Poop” to learn more about the importance of disposing of pet waste appropriately.
  • Green City, Clean Waters Ambassadors – this pilot program, which started last spring, is designed to educate community leaders and give them the tools they need to become a champion of greening their neighborhoods
  • SMIP – Stormwater Management Incentives Program – this new program provides grant funds to non-residential water customers to green their properties
  • CIF – Community Input Form – this new tool is designed to allow the community to provide input on potential locations for green infrastructure projects in their neighborhoods (e.g., schools, rec centers, parks, parking lots, streets)
  • Green Homes – Rebuilding Together Philadelphia – PWD has partnered with Rebuilding Together Philadelphia to bring green infrastructure to lower-income neighborhoods. Often these homeowners want to maintain and improve their properties but don’t have the skills or funds to do so, but once the stormwater planter or rain barrel is installed – they take great pride in it.
  • Green Schools – Transforming Schoolyards Charette – through a partnership with the Community Design Collaborative and their roster of volunteer design and engineering professionals, PWD is able to generate innovative ideas for greening the City’s schoolyards. Download the Guide to Stormwater Management on School Campuses.