Water collection system at Blue Ash's Summit Park saving environment, reducing costs
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - "We're trying to build a 100+ year park, so the more we can do to make it sustainable, make it more cost effective for the community and for us to operate, the better," explained Brian Kruse, City of Blue Ash Parks and Golf Superintendent.
While you may see Blue Ash's Summit Park as a social, recreational, and natural space, it was also designed to be a large water collection system.
Kruse explained, "The goal is to collect all of the water. Whether it's landing on top of the building, on the hard surfaces, or on the turf itself, essentially and internally, it gets recycled. You're not going to see a downspout on the outside of the building, but the downspouts all feed into that system and make their way back to the pond."
This pond is the focal point of the water collection system. One of the unique inputs to this system is the parking lot.
"All the water that gets collected in the parking lot comes down into the bioswale, gets naturally filtered, and essentially becomes the work horse for the water recycling system," said Kruse.
If you think that's neat, welcome to Stage 3 of Summit Park. Part of it involves this creek and an EPA grant that helps it fit into the larger irrigation system.
Kruse said, "[Water] eventually makes its way to the pond, and then it gets pulled from the pond, pumped into the irrigation system. We turn on the irrigation system to water some of those Class A areas - the landscape spaces that we've got, some of our annuals and turf areas like the great lawn; it's getting water that eventually - at some point in time - fell from the sky.
While LED lighting and durable stone surfaces also contribute to sustainability and cost savings, Summit Park's water collection system works to save taxpayers money and make a green space for kids, families, and residents to enjoy.
"For us, it's obviously a very easy natural resource for us to collect. It's a cost savings for us. It's a really nice green initiative and helps us with sustainability in terms of operating the park and lowering our costs in terms of operations on a regular basis," explained Kruse.