(ALL RIGHTS GRANTED TNC, CREDIT MANDATORY) Detroit, Michigan © Michael David-Lorne Jordan/David-Lorne Photographic
GREENING CITIES (ALL RIGHTS GRANTED TNC, CREDIT MANDATORY) Detroit, Michigan © Michael David-Lorne Jordan/David-Lorne Photographic © © Michael D-L Jordan/dlp

Stories in Michigan

Detroit Stormwater Hub

A one-stop resource for green stormwater infrastructure information in Detroit.

Across Detroit, community groups, local nonprofits and city planners are implementing or supporting the implemention of green stormwater infrastructure as a way to improve stormwater management. Green stormwater infrastructure—the installation of plants, trees and permeable surfaces to help capture and slow stormwater runoff—provides numerous benefits, including reduced surface flooding and combined sewer overflows during heavy rain events as well as neighborhood beautification. 

Yet, most of these projects are happening independently of one another, at various scales and using a variety of methods. Who is tracking all of this activity and monitoring progress? 

Enter the Detroit Stormwater Hub: a website and interactive map that will share information about green stormwater infrastructure projects across Detroit, as well as how to design and implement green stormwater infrastructure. Built by the Detroit community for the Detroit community, the Hub will feature local best practices, stories and resources.

The Hub is comprised of two elements:

1.      A map of green stormwater infrastructure projects in Detroit with locations, images and project information.

2.     A knowledgebase of relevant, local resources including green stormwater infrastructure best practices, stories, educational resources and tools designed to support this work in the city of Detroit.

The result of a unique collaboration between TNC, the City of Detroit and an advisory group of community-based organizations, nonprofits, local government and technical experts, this dynamic project and its partners are committed to making a significant impact on stormwater management by getting credible, local green stormwater infrastructure information into the hands of people that can use it. 

The Detroit Stormwater Hub will enable and support collective efforts to grow green stormwater infrastructure practices throughout the city of Detroit.

Innovative, Science-based Tools

In addition to serving as an important community resource, the Detroit Stormwater Hub also fills an important need for developing quantitative metrics and science-based tools around green stormwater infrastructure. A public submission form for the map will enable the collection of information for installations that were not previously tracked, building a more comprehensive dataset for the city.

This will provide the opportunity to aggregate the impacts of both public and private green stormwater infrastructure projects installed throughout the city. These metrics could include, among others, the total volume of water managed through installations, the total acres of green spaces added, and the concentration of green stormwater infrastructure projects across Detroit. Collecting this data in a centralized hub will make it easier to track city-wide progress, as well as provide important metrics for refining the design and installation of future  projects.


A City-wide Vision

In 2016, a clear need arose for a tool to help Detroit property owners and organizations to understand, collaborate, and ultimately track the progress of their green stormwater infrastructure efforts city-wide. 

With the generous support of The Erb Family Foundation, TNC spearheaded the development of a city-wide knowledgebase to share resources and facilitate collaboration between the City of Detroit and the community it serves.

During the initial phase of this project, an advisory group of local organizations convened for a series of conversations about what was needed to build support and facilitate collaboration around green stormwater infrastructure in Detroit. Over time, the project grew into the Detroit Stormwater Hub.

The Hub is scheduled to launch in Summer 2019.