Nitsch Team Wins First Phase of Green Infrastructure Challenge

We’re thrilled to announce that Nitsch’s design for the DC Water Green Infrastructure Challenge has been selected as one of the winners of the planning and design phase of the competition!

The DC Water Green Infrastructure Challenge asked firms to design innovative solutions that absorb stormwater before it enters the combined sewer system. To meet this goal, Nitsch Engineering worked in partnership with Urban Rain|Design to develop the proposal for Kennedy|Greened: A Neighborhood Green Street Project.

Nitsch proposed six green infrastructure strategies that integrate landscape and stormwater, and can be replicated throughout urban corridors across the District of Columbia. These strategies include new street trees, lawn conversion, pavers with Landscape Infiltration Gaps (LIGs), stormwater curb extensions, grated landscapes, and sub-surface storage/infiltration. Environmental art installations integrate and draw attention to these functional stormwater features, raising awareness of stormwater movement, treatment, and storage. The design further promotes “complete street” concepts by using curb bump-outs, sidewalk crossings, sharrows, and boardwalks to create a streetscape that is safe and comfortable for pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists.

Nicole Holmes, PE, LEED AP BD+C, Nitsch Engineering’s Green Infrastructure Project Manager, noted, “We anticipate that our plan for Kennedy Street will eliminate 545,000 gallons of stormwater from entering the combined sewer system annually, will improve water quality, and will minimize urban heat island effects. Just as important, our design will benefit the community by raising awareness and advocacy of green infrastructure, and by creating a shared street that is safer and more pleasant for all roadway users: public transit vehicles, automobiles, bicycles, and pedestrians.”

The design competition is now moving into Phase II, which will involve more in-depth design to determine which of the winning designs will enter construction. The team includes Nitsch Engineering as the design engineer and principal consultant; Urban Rain|Design as the landscape architect; Stacy Levy as the artist; and Raymond Papa as the graphic designer.