As part of its obligations to regulate stormwater runoff pollutants under NPDES MS4 Phase I requirements, the City of Menlo Park has adopted a Green Infrastructure Plan for Stormwater (GI Plan) that demonstrates a shift from traditional “gray” infrastructure, which channels untreated runoff directly into San Francisco Bay, to a more resilient and sustainable stormwater system that integrates “green” infrastructure strategies. Along with its teaming partners, Lotus helped establish how source control, redevelopment requirements (C.3), green streets, regional capture projects, LID retrofits, and additional City policies can collectively combine to meet runoff capture targets cost-effectively. Dive into the complete document here.
The City of San José has published a Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GSI) Plan that lays out the approach, strategies, targets, and tasks needed to transition traditional “gray” infrastructure to include GSI over the long term. Lotus Water was integral in developing the plan, which serves as an implementation guide for institutionalizing the concepts of GSI into standard municipal engineering, construction, and maintenance practices. As California’s weather becomes increasingly unpredictable and extreme, GSI strategies can provide the City with enhanced climate resiliency, local water supplies, and energy savings, consistent with the City’s sustainability goals. The GSI Plan is available here for public review and comment until May 15 - take a peek and share your thoughts!
Under sunny skies, community members and local officials gathered Saturday to celebrate the reopening of the newly spruced up McLaren Community Garden, which features a series of rain gardens designed by Lotus as part of the SFPUC’s Visitacion Valley Green Nodes project. The new green infrastructure will manage 800,000 gallons of stormwater each year from approximately 1.5 acres of impervious surface, while providing a pedestrian and habitat connection to McLaren Park from Leland Avenue. “I am thrilled to see the community and environmental improvement projects at McLaren Park,” said Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco). “We are lucky this year to have gotten so much rain, but that’s not always the case. The new rain garden will help us to reuse hundreds of thousands of gallons of rainwater each year. We need more projects like these that bring benefits to local communities while helping advance our broader environmental goals.” The ribbon-cutting ceremony was followed by community yoga, gardening activities, and a walking tour of the rain gardens where community members were able to see the bioretention areas in action after the rainy week. Attendees also learned about how the City is implementing green infrastructure through capital projects, programs, and grants to sustainably manage stormwater. Read more about the Visitacion Valley Green Nodes here!
We hope you stay awhile to look around, and be sure to check back for the latest in Lotus news!
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The SFPUC GI Grant Program has launched! Lotus helped developed the program and will be providing ongoing technical support during implementation. The first public workshop about the program sold out with over 100 attendees, and the first applicant has already submitted! The SFPUC aims to award $6M in GI grants during the first two years of the program, with up to $2M max per project. Learn more about the program and how a grant could benefit you!
Lotus recently helped complete the Stormwater Resources Plan (SWRP) for Santa Clara County. The Plan identifies and prioritizes green stormwater infrastructure throughout the County. As part of the project, Lotus developed concept designs of several promising opportunities. The project website is here and the SWRP report can be downloaded here.
Lotus has been working on developing sustainable water systems for the Civic Center District area since 2014. More recently, we were on CMG’s team to assist them with developing a comprehensive plan for the public realm area of the Civic Center Plaza, Fulton Street, UN Plaza, garage/Brooks Hall, and adjacent streets. Our piece of this plan included over 100 iterations of complex water balance analyses!
Read more about the this ongoing plan in the San Francisco Chronicle.
Taking advantage of our wonderful new shared space, Lotus celebrated our first holiday season at 660 Mission with our friends and neighbors at SITELAB. After a hard day’s work, everyone was treated to a Winter Wonderland-themed happy hour, complete with a lively white elephant gift exchange that went into extra innings, fueled by the office’s creative spirit...along with a tasty, Spiked Cocoa Bar featuring a homemade hot chocolate recipe!