Heavy rains at the Black Forest Inn were flooding an outdoor patio area and overflowing into the banquet facilities. Designers created a system of stormwater management practices using vegetated planters, a sediment catchment basin and underground dry wells. Together, these features capture and treat most of the stormwater runoff on site, eliminating the flooding and also protecting local water quality.
An MWMO Mini Grant helped fund the project’s innovative stormwater conveyance system, designed and built in collaboration with the Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center. The system carries roof runoff to the stormwater treatment area while creating a dramatic artistic amenity for the restaurant.
The project sparked the interest of a diverse group of local business owners, who came together for an open house to learn more about urban stormwater management practices and related financial incentive programs. Interpretive signage installed at the site illustrates how the functional needs of stormwater management can be incorporated in interesting and artistic ways on small commercial properties, even in highly developed urban sites with confined space considerations.