The 18th annual Mayor's Green Fair in Ann Arbor is coming up on Friday, June 8th! In this week's "Issues of the Environment," WEMU's David Fair talks to Ann Arbor Mayor Christopher Taylor about this year's event.
A dramatic increase in precipitation amounts (45% in 50 years, according to Taylor) and poor stormwater retention design, have led to long-standing flooding problems in Ann Arbor. A stormwater rate increase was approved for Ann Arbor residents last year, but more funding is needed to cover all the projects needed. The city could realize a savings from lower flood insurance when these projects are completed.
According to the mayor's annual report, the city has roughly 15,000 stormwater catch basins, 541 miles of stormwater conveyance pipes, channels and ditches, about 70 city-owned rain gardens, 36 city-owned detention basins, 626 privately owned detention basins and 52,000 city-managed trees along city streets and in parks. His report indicates there are about 20 full-time employees dedicated to this area of city government.
This past year, the report states, the major stormwater capital projects in the city included:
- Street tree planting - 1,000 street trees throughout Ann Arbor
- South University streetscape - rain gardens and street trees to capture sidewalk runoff; new stormwater infiltration inlets to increase stormwater capture
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