Stormwater Management: Broadway Drain Enhancement


Aerial view of the west end of the Broadway Drain, August 2016

Aerial view of the west end of the Broadway Drain, August 2016

 

Workers prepare the Broadway Drain for naturalized planting and seedingWorkers prepare the Broadway Drain for naturalized planting and seeding

 

Once constructed, the Canadian Port of Entry (POE) at the Gordie Howe International Bridge will be the largest Canadian inspection plaza along the Canada-US border.

A site the size of 53 soccer fields poses several challenges including managing stormwater run-off which could cause flooding at the Canadian POE.  

A comprehensive stormwater management system has been designed to collect and treat run-off from hard surfaces such as roadways, parking lots and roofs before it is discharged into the Detroit River. The system includes 3.5 km of storm sewers, three stormwater management ponds and extensive enhancements to the municipally-owned Broadway Drain.

The enhancements to the Broadway Drain are vital to the overall stormwater management system at the Canadian POE but were also designed to protect fish and the quality of fish habitat.  Tree stumps, rocks and native aquatic plants have been strategically placed in and on the banks of the Broadway Drain to provide spawning grounds and help promote a food supply for fish and other aquatic life. The overall result is a more naturalized habitat for fish.  

The bank of the Broadway Drain now includes three new snake hibernacula – underground chambers that snakes use through winter for hibernation. Each hibernaculum is located below the frost line and close to the water table (so the snakes do not dehydrate) and are constructed using different size rocks, tree branches, and cement blocks that are arranged to form a series of underground voids. It is expected that each of these hibernacula will become the wintering dens for hundreds of snakes.

Another important improvement to the Broadway Drain includes the installation of a rock jetty made from gabion and armor stone that extends 40 metres into the Detroit River. The jetty will help control shoreline erosion and slow natural river currents at the mouth of the Broadway Drain.

Grading the Broadway Drain near Sandwich Street

  Grading the Broadway Drain near Sandwich Street

 


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