BSC Office of Communications

News from the Hilltop

January 29, 2010

Birmingham-Southern environmental park receives local conservation award

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—The Urban Environmental Park at Birmingham-Southern College was awarded a Conservation Development Award from the Cahaba River Society. The award, presented at the society's 2010 annual meeting, was primarily in recognition for the low impact design (LID) features of the new park located on the college's campus.

LakeAccording to the Cahaba River Society, it presents annual awards to highlight green building projects in the region that conserve water resources through low impact development storm water management, rainwater harvesting, and drinking water efficiency. Highlights of the BSC park project noted for the award include capturing runoff water in three rain gardens where some of it is filtered and reused to fill the park pond, saving an existing natural wetland as a third storm water infiltration site to handle pond overflow, using native plants to further filter water in the pond, and guarding of trees and minimizing tree removal on the site to protect the existing campus forest.

The new Urban Environmental Park was completed in 2009 and dedicated at ceremonies during Homecoming/Alumni Reunion Weekend in November. The donor-funded park with a 1.5 acre lake includes an amphitheatre, walkways, a fountain, and rain gardens for storm water management. The park is serving as a leisure-time and recreational activity area for students as well as providing a wealth of hands-on learning for students, especially those in the new Urban Environmental Studies major at BSC. Two under-construction residence halls that will provide suite-style living for 167 men and women will soon overlook the new park.

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