New rain gardens under construction at NCC
Construction is underway for two new rain gardens to improve stormwater handling and to support ongoing environmental enhancements on Nash Community College’s campus. The new additions, along with the restoration of an existing swale, will alleviate nutrient and sediment pollution of a creek located near the college.
Kris Bass Engineering and Backwater Environmental are working with Sound Rivers to construct the stormwater projects through funding provided by the Canon Foundation and a North Carolina Environmental Enhancement Grant.
One rain garden will be located in front of the Brown Auditorium. The brick-walled garden will trap rainwater and runoff from the main campus through-way to slow its entry into the creek and to allow the water to be filtered by the garden’s soil.
The garden will be planted with eastern wild rye, broomsedge, pink muhly grass, joe-pye weed, lizard’s tail, common rush, black-eyed Susans, cardinal flowers and purple coneflower, surrounded by triple-shredded hardwood mulch. The oblong and curved-border garden will also feature a river rock path.
Nash Community College already holds distinctions of both Tree Campus USA and Bee Campus USA and these plants will attract even more pollinators to the grounds.
The second rain garden’s location is planned for a low-lying area at the Early College High School, located at the back of NCC’s campus. “It’s a low, grassy area that has a drain in the middle, so it feeds into the underground network of storm drains. It is catching a lot of runoff and sediment from the parking lot,” Sound Rivers Environmental Projects Coordinator Clay Barber said. This will prevent standing water on the parking lot and sidewalk.
A third project will address severe erosion of a swale adjacent to another campus driveway.