New Womrath Park To Open In November

 

Rain garden under construction at Womrath Park | Photo: Nathaniel Popkin

Frankford’s Womrath Park, undergoing a major overhaul to transform it into an active stormwater basin, will open in November, according to an official with the Philadelphia Water Department.

The project is funded as part of a $30 million loan received from Pennvest, the state revolving loan fund, to implement PWD’s Green City, Clean Waters program, which is aimed at keeping street runoff out of Philadelphia’s streams and rivers and reducing the number of stormwater overflows that occur each year. Green City, Clean Water will transform over a hundred blocks across the city into green infrastructure.

“Every time we install a project it starts to work immediately, that’s the beauty of this approach,” says PWD’s Jessica Brooks, who oversaw a project design team that included members of the firms Wallace, Roberts, and Todd and Duffield Associates and officials from the City’s Department of Parks and Recreation. Traditional sewer infrastructure is more expensive and provides no benefits until an entire system is installed, a process that might take 10-20 years.

Image: Philadelphia Water Department

Womrath will be capable of accepting an inch of run-off from surrounding streets and the Market-Frankford El, into a series of rain gardens, swales, and basins. Modular storage tanks below the ground of the park will store much of the run-off, releasing it slowly into the sewer system.

Here is how the Water Department describes the performance of the park’s new stormwater system:

Follow the blue arrows to understand the stormwater flow from the street through the inlets to the swale, which directs the stormwater to the rain garden and stone storage bed underneath the rain garden. The swale infiltrates some stormwater, while also directing it to the rain garden, where it is infiltrated into the soil and the stone storage bed. The stormwater is then slowly released when it is not raining back into the existing combined sewer pipe. There is an overflow drain, which connects to an overflow pipe leading to the existing combined sewer pipe, that helps drain the rain garden when it reaches capacity.

Installation of overflow drain in Womrath Park | Photo: Nathaniel Popkin

The new park will reuse broken up concrete already on site and architectural salvage to build a series of check-downs, guiding water through the site.

About the author

Nathaniel Popkin is co-editor of the Hidden City Daily and author of three books of non-fiction, including the forthcoming Philadelphia: Finding the Hidden City (Temple Press) and a novel, Lion and Leopard (The Head and the Hand Press). He is the senior writer of the film documentary "Philadelphia: The Great Experiment."



Leave a Reply

Comment moderation is enabled, no need to resubmit any comments posted.

Recent Posts
Demo Prep Begins For Gothic Revival Church In West Philly

Demo Prep Begins For Gothic Revival Church In West Philly

April 20, 2018  |  News

Christ Memorial Reformed Episcopal Church, a mountainous 131-year-old Gothic Revival landmark in West Philly, prepares for the end. Michael Bixler has the news > more

Ghosts Of The Abandoned Arch Street Subway Line

Ghosts Of The Abandoned Arch Street Subway Line

April 18, 2018  |  Harry K's Encyclopedia

Harry K. takes us into the abandoned subway tunnels below Arch Street with the history behind Philly's unfinished plans for a grand underground transit system > more

Unlisted Philadelphia: Tourison Building

Unlisted Philadelphia: Tourison Building

April 17, 2018  |  Unlisted Philadelphia

Ben Leech spotlights unique and significant buildings not listed on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places with his architectural illustration series, Unlisted Philadelphia. In this installment, an Art Deco delight fills the heart of Mount Airy > more

Old Iron Works In Logan Square To Face The Wrecking Ball

Old Iron Works In Logan Square To Face The Wrecking Ball

April 13, 2018  |  News

When the housing bubble burst and the recession hit in 2007, plans to convert Creswell Iron Works on Cherry Street into apartments tanked. The quaint collection of industrial buildings is now headed for demolition. Michael Bixler has the details > more

American Revolution Landmark To Be Auctioned Off At Sheriff Sale

American Revolution Landmark To Be Auctioned Off At Sheriff Sale

April 11, 2018  |  Harry K's Encyclopedia, News

Old stone home in Frankford with ties to the Declaration of Independence goes up for auction at a sherif sale in May. Harry K. has the news and history behind this threatened national landmark > more

Time Travel At Trader Joe's Reveals Tuxedos & Snazzy Shoes

Time Travel At Trader Joe’s Reveals Tuxedos & Snazzy Shoes

April 9, 2018  |  The Shadow Knows

The Shadow makes a run to Trader Joe's where fine footwear and totally awesome 1980s tuxedos kept things classy at 2121 Market Street > more