The I-690 Downspout Disconnection project is a creative use of the existing catchment system which collects stormwater from the raised I-690 roadway as it passes through the downtown area of Syracuse.
The downspout piping was disconnected from the combined sewer system, and instead redirected into infiltration trenches and rain gardens. Instead of adding superfluous piping and handling the water at one single location requiring a large footprint, there are 6 smaller sites managing the runoff from the adjacent stretch of elevated roadway. Each of these 6 sites was designed to utilize pockets of available space without disrupting the existing land use in downtown Syracuse.
Rain gardens were planted with a variety of plant species that will greatly improve the aesthetics of the sites while allowing for the infiltration and evaporation of captured rain water, preventing it from entering the combined sewer system. Subsurface infiltration trenches accomplish the same stormwater capture goals as rain gardens, but fit into sites with no available space at ground level. The stormwater capture for this project is 1.25 million gallons per year, making it a valuable addition to Onondaga County’s Save the Rain Program. This project was also funded in part by the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation through their Green Innovation Grant Program, one of four such projects within the Save the Rain Program.
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