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Delta Institute, 35 E. Wacker, Ste 1200, Chicago, IL 60601
October 9, 2020
Delta Institute is restoring a key waterway in Hobart, Indiana, that flows throughout the entire watershed and ultimately into Lake Michigan. Currently the waterway, the Duck Creek Tributary, overflows with pollution, sediment, and toxins—impacting the water quality downstream for many communities, including multiple that are designated Environmental Justice (EJ) communities.
Delta Institute (Delta) is working with municipal, business, and community partners in Lake County, Indiana to expand regional forest canopy acreage via an innovative multi-community approach to comprehensive canopy mapping; forest planning, installing 2,240+ trees, and expanding maintenance and capacity building. These efforts will be achieved via a collaborative tree planting consortium structure with foundational inclusive community engagement throughout the entire process.
Delta Institute (Delta) is working with community partners to install and monitor the impacts and benefits of nature-based Green Infrastructure projects in the BIPOC-majority Chicago neighborhoods of Washington Park, Woodlawn, and South Shore in concert with Emerald South’s Terra Firma project to develop replicable resources for communities throughout the region. Our goal is to streamline green infrastructure implementation, maintenance, and assessment strategy.
Stormwater runoff from parking lots, roadways, buildings, and other impervious surfaces carries oils, grease, pesticides, sediment, and excess nutrients such as phosphorous and nitrogen into groundwater and nearby natural bodies of water--including to Lake Michigan through watershed tributaries. Due to the increased frequency and severity of storms as a result of global climate change, volumes of stormwater runoff continue to increase. Delta Institute (Delta) and our partners are planting more than 700 trees in Oceana County, Michigan along the Hart Montague Trail, and on roadways within five adjacent communities.
Delta Institute (Delta) partnered with the Michigan City Sanitary District (MCSD) and the Alliance for the Great Lakes to make stormwater, ecological restoration, and recreation improvements at Michigan City’s Cheney Run. A 40-acre site surrounded by wetlands, Cheney Run is a primary source of stormwater-related pollution that ends up in the Trail Creek, a major tributary that feeds into Lake Michigan.
Delta Institute (Delta) and the City of Hobart have implemented four GI installations throughout the city, including a courtyard rain garden at Hobart Middle School, a parking lot rain garden and permeable pavement in the front and backsides of Hobart City Hall, and a large bioswale in the city’s Hillman Park. These installations will collectively provide an additional 800,000 to 3.5 million gallons of stormwater management capacity that will improve water and soil quality within two major watersheds, while also serving as both beautification and environmental education tools for local residents.
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