Washburn Center Raingarden

Washburn Center for Children will reconstruct one of its raingardens to better absorb stormwater runoff and maximize habitat.


Project Details

City: Minneapolis

Type: Action Grant

Status: Active

Timeline: 2018

MWMO Funding: $12,000

Partners: City of Minneapolis; Civil Site Group; Mortenson Construction; Washburn Center for Children

Staff Contact:
Nancy Stowe
Projects and Outreach Director
Email Nancy Stowe
View Bio

Washburn Center for Children, Mortenson Construction and the MWMO are partnering to rebuild an underperforming raingarden at Washburn Center’s state-of-the-art mental health care facility. An MWMO Action Grant will pay for native grasses and interpretive signage at the site.

Constructed in 2014, Washburn Center’s new $24.5 million facility includes a variety of environmental sustainability features. Two raingardens were originally incorporated into the landscape design; while one has functioned as intended, the other has suffered from various problems, including lack of stormwater infiltration and growth of invasive plant species.

Working with the City of Minneapolis, Washburn Center decided to redesign and rebuild its malfunctioning “East Raingarden” to maximize its water filtration and pollinator habitat. Mortenson Construction is providing funding and manpower to rebuild the basin and correct the filtration issues.

In addition to increasing the water quality benefits of the raingarden, the reconstruction will improve the habitat and aesthetics of the garden, which is located prominently on a street corner and adjacent to the building’s front lobby. The presence of the raingardens and the addition of interpretive signage will provide a unique experiential learning opportunity for children engaged in therapeutic care for trauma and other mental health challenges, and their families.