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Source: Huntington Patch

$276K Project Prevents Stormwater Runoff From Polluting Centerport Harbor

The new addition to Centerport Beach will stop heavy metals, oil, pesticides, sediment and pet waste from entering the harbor.

BY PAIGE MCATEE (PATCH STAFF)

Posted: January 6, 2017
Originally Published: January 5, 2017

A rain garden bioswale at Centerport Beach, which looks to filter 80 percent of stormwater runoff that has been polluting the harbor, was recently completed, the Town of Huntington announced last week.

Huntington Supervisor Frank P. Petrone wants residents to know the bioswale, which was part of a $276,210 project, is both functional and aesthetic.

“The Town has created a natural filter for water that will go a long way toward helping to clean up Centerport Harbor,” he said in a press release.

The project took 6,900 square feet of parking lot and planted 75 trees and eight different types of native plants. Also installed were paths made of permeable pavers, which is lower on one side and higher on the other, to trap stormwater before it runs into Centerport Harbor.

“Replacing a section of the parking lot with a beautiful vegetative area will not only improve water quality and water clarity, it will increase the scenic beauty of this wonderful beach,” Adrienne Esposito, Citizen’s Campaign executive director said. “This is a small project with a big impact.”

How it works:

The bioswale and permeable pavers capture the runoff. Once captured, it slowly seeps into the soil and filters through the roots of the plantings in the bioswale, causing a majority of the pollutants to be removed. The water then gets filtered again through a layer of sand, gravel or rock.

As rainwater and melting snow move across roads, parking lots, rooftops and other impervious surfaces, they pick up harmful pollutants such as heavy metals, oil, pesticides, sediment and pet waste that end up on beaches and in bays. Polluted runoff is one of the leading causes of pollution to area waters, the Town says.

The Town says the project will:

  • Filter stormwater pollutants
  • Help fight against toxic algae blooms
  • Be cost-effective
  • Help the environment

The project is partially funded through a $137,322 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Long Island Sound Futures Fund. The project is thanks to Northport Harbor Water Quality Protection Committee, which Petrone and Esposito co-chair.

As part of the grant, the Town is partnering with the Citizens Campaign for the Environment on a public information campaign to spread public awareness on the project.
An informational kiosk will be on-site explaining the project and a video explaining the project will be shared on social media.