We're taking a green approach to stormwater management. Rainwater from our new parking lots flows into a system of bioswales, which pre-treat and clean the water naturally before it enters Lake St. Clair. The estate now has several bioswales and a water retention pond.
What is a bioswale? A bioswale is a shallow depression or ditch that conveys and filters water through plants and soil which soak up excess nitrogen, phosphorous, and other pollutants before letting the water enter the lake's ecosystem.
How it works When it rains, runoff water collects oil and chemicals from fertilizers, vehicles, and other sources of unhealthy contaminants on the ground. In Ford House parking lots, runoff water is directed to the bioswales, where it flows through specially-designed soils to collect pollutants. Inside the bioswale, native plants and microorganisms also help capture excess nutrients and break down pollutants into healthier materials.
Slowly, the filtered water makes its way back into Ford Cove and the greater watershed.
Photo credit John F. Martin.