Government officials, stakeholders survey cost-effective solutions to stormwater runoff pollution and other water quality issues; Parks and People foundation recognized for New Broadway East Community Park
BALTIMORE, MD (January 7, 2014) – In a ceremony earlier today, Maryland Department of the Environment Secretary Robert M. Summers and Maryland Department of Natural Resources Secretary Joe Gill presented the Parks and People Foundation with the Smart, Green & Growing (SGG) Award for Innovations in Stormwater Management for a project that reduced stormwater runoff through multiple best management practices at the New Broadway East Community Park in Baltimore City. The SGG award recognizes groups, organizations, county and municipal governments and projects that have fostered the creation of new approaches to address the impact of stormwater runoff pollution in Maryland.
The award was presented at the third annual SGG Clean Water Innovations Trade Show in Baltimore, which featured exhibitions of stormwater and water quality solutions. The Trade Show is a culmination of MDE’s Stormwater Innovations Tour, a campaign to show the public projects already underway around the state to reduce stormwater pollution.
More than 300 people registered to attend the event. Thirty-nine exhibitors featured products and services for environmentally-sensitive site design and restoration of wetlands, streams and other ecosystems.
The Trade Show was an initiative developed at a 2011 “Maryland Forward” forum on sustainability. It was inspired by the suggestion of Governor Martin O’Malley to bring together Maryland businesses with developers and local governments to work on cost-effective solutions to reduce stormwater runoff pollution and other water quality issues.
- Winner of the 2013 SGG Stormwater Innovation Award, the NewBroadwayEastCommunityPark is a partnership between the Parks & People Foundation, Baltimore City (property-owner) and Humanim (adjoining property owner).
- The green space project transformed 18 former residential home sites demolished by the Baltimore City Department of Housing and Community Development. Typical of demolished housing sites, the soils were compacted and the site lacked stormwater management.
- While designed to function as a community park, the project incorporates low-impact stormwater approaches such as soil de-compaction, permeable concrete and pavers and landscaping including native species.
- The project was funded primarily through the Chesapeake and Atlantic Costal Bays Trust Fund through the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Additional funding was provided by Boise, ASPEN®Recycled Papers and Alliance for Community Trees.
- Urban and suburban stormwater pollution accounts for 18 percent of the pollution into our rivers, streams, lakes and drinking water reservoirs.
- Under the federal Clean Water Act, the State and federal governments work together with local jurisdictions to curb this large polluting sector by setting targets for stormwater pollution reduction that the jurisdictions must reach.
- During the 2012 Maryland General Assembly session, lawmakers passed House Bill 987 to give local jurisdictions the flexibility needed to set fees that would work for each jurisdiction and a way to fund the pollution reduction projects needed to meet the goals set under the Clean Water Act.
- Maryland is 75 percent of the way toward meeting its 2025 federal pollution diet goal.
- Most jurisdictions have discounts and rebates to stormwater fees available for those businesses and residents that have taken steps to reduce stormwater runoff on their properties.
“Under the leadership of the O’Malley-Brown Administration, Maryland continues to make great strides in improving the quality of our groundwater, streams and rivers, but there is still more that needs to be done. Local governments, communities and non-profit organizations are working together to address stormwater in Maryland, not because they have to, but because they know it is the right thing to do. All Marylanders benefit when the public and private sectors work with one another to encourage innovation and protect our natural resources. This event is an important part of that effort.”
- Robert M. Summers, Secretary, Maryland Department of the Environment
“Congratulations to the Parks and People Foundation for their receipt of the 2013 Smart, Green & Growing Award for Innovations in Stormwater Management. The NewBroadwayEastCommunityPark project is an outstanding example of what can be achieved when state, local and private stakeholders partner. This project not only changed the landscape of one Baltimore neighborhood from dilapidated row houses to trees, green space and native species, but also implemented innovative stormwater filtration to protect our waterways.”
- Joe Gill, Secretary, Maryland Department of Natural Resources