Supporting Green Innovation & the Climate Action Plan: A Case Study in the Town of Edmonston - Chesapeake Bay Trust Skip to main content

Supporting Green Innovation & the Climate Action Plan: A Case Study in the Town of Edmonston

By April 12, 2022Blog

The Town of Edmonston has several “firsts” and “greats” as accomplishments, including being home to one of the “Greenest Streets in America” thanks to the completion of a “green street” in 2010. A “green street” is a technique that can include several green infrastructure practices, such as street trees, rain gardens, pervious pavement, bioretention cells, and bioswales, in one location that is centered around and connected to a street site. Edmonston’s “Green Street” project is a model for others that wish to “Go Green” to make their town greener and healthier.

Pervious gutter and curb on Decatur Street.

Edmonston recently installed its 30th green infrastructure practice, with 10 more being constructed in the summer of 2022. Yes, you read that correctly; this is a lot of green in a small town that 1,545 people call home. Many of these practices were implemented with grant funds including through the Prince George’s Stormwater Stewardship Grant Program supported by the Department of the Environment. The Town plans to continue pushing the envelope by installing green practices while maintaining the existing practices so that they look beautiful and function to clean water while being home to native plants that attract our birds and butterflies.

The Town is touting another “first” with the installation of the first pervious curb and gutter systems in the Maryland. These innovative techniques, which were tested in the west coast and are used extensively in New York City, were brought to Maryland by Ecosite, Inc., a county-based firm, who worked closely with the Town on the projects. The pervious curb and gutter system use the road’s right of way space to house the green infrastructure practice that soaks up stormwater from the roadways before it enters the storm drain. You can visit the pervious curb and gutter systems on Decatur Street (main street) and on Ingraham Street in the industrial district bounded by 46th Avenue, Ingraham Street, and Lafayette Place. Speaking of “firsts” Edmonston installed several “industrial green streets” bringing green infrastructure to these busy, high traffic areas that are home to many thriving businesses.

Installing an industrial green street bioretention practice.

The Town, with Ecosite’s technical support, has been pioneering and demonstrating the use of “in-situ” bioretention design and construction. This technique minimizes the excavation of existing soils and instead improves these soils by incorporating well aged organic materials like pine fines and composted leaf mulch into the soil. This technique was developed by Dr. Robert Gouin, professor emeritus of the University of Maryland School of Horticulture. By reducing the need to excavate and remove existing soils and replacing them with expensive man-made bioretention media, the practice reduces bioretention system costs to 30% of traditional costs and takes our remediation dollars further. In addition, this practice results in improved soils that provide significantly greater infiltration capacity, treatment of runoff, and pollutant removal.

Finally, the Town considers the green infrastructure practices part of a longer-term strategy that provides many benefits to those who live and visit Edmonston. Mayor Tracy Gant says, “Edmonston is committed to protecting our natural environment for future generations through innovative approaches and practices that protect the Anacostia Watershed and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay.”

These green infrastructure practices reduce flooding, improve water quality, improve air quality, reduce urban heat effects, and support climate resiliency goals for the Town, County, State, and beyond. Learn more about the Town’s greening efforts at https://edmonstonmd.gov/about-edmonston/ and more about the County’s Climate Action Plan at https://www.princegeorgescountymd.gov/3748/Climate-Change. The Prince George’s Stormwater Stewardship Grant Program supports innovative and sustainable green infrastructure practices throughout Prince George’s County.

Explore other grants supported by the Prince George’s Stormwater Stewardship Grant Program in the Town of Edmonston below.

Water Quality Retrofits for Hamilton Street- for the installation of seven rain gardens on Hamilton Street. $131,785.

Water Quality Retrofits for Gallatin Street Project- for the installation of 10 rain gardens on Gallatin Street. $142,803.

Water Quality Retrofits for Lafayette Place Industrial Green Street Project- to implement the fourth industrial “green street” which will be located in the district of Lafayette Place. $68,527.

Water Quality Retrofits for Ingraham Green Street Project- for green street implementation on Ingraham Street between 46th Ave and Lafayette Street, further demonstrating green infrastructure efforts in the Town and including an industrial pilot for future replication. $169,530.

Water Quality Retrofits for the 46th Avenue Green Street Project- to design and construct eight curbside rain gardens and one permeable concrete curb and gutter to treat over five acres of impervious surface. $148,000.

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