F&ES Class Helps Get New Haven Green Infrastructure Project 'In the Ground'

F&ES Class Helps Get New Haven Green Infrastructure Project ‘In the Ground’

Earlier this year, a group of F&ES students traveled down the I-95 corridor, from New York to Washington, to explore how four major cities are using “green infrastructure” to handle storm water runoff. In each city they received an important piece of advice: Just get projects built.

“What all these cities helped us understand was the importance of getting projects in the ground, just to see how they function in your own city,” said Caitlin Feehan M.E.M. ’14, who helped organize the research trip.

This week, the students can say they’ve helped New Haven put its own project in the ground. The research they conducted as part of their class, F&ES 963: Payments for Ecosystem Services, helped inspire plans for new green projects in the Elm City, including a new bioswale that was completed today on Trumbull Street.

The bioswale, whose design was based on a New York design adapted by New Haven, will help prevent polluted rainwater from entering city sewers.

The bioswale was installed by Chris Ozyck, associate director of the F&ES-based Urban Resources Initiative (URI), and URI’s GreenSkills team, a green jobs program for ex-offenders and teens.

Earlier this semester, the students’ research helped frame the storm water management piece of the new Yale Sustainable Strategic Plan — a contribution that will transform the way Yale manages the expensive problem of storm water runoff.

(Photo courtesy of Brad Gentry)