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By Victoria D. Kirby
University News
December 14, 2010

Home Depot Funds Rain Garden Project

Howard University was selected as one of only 10 HBCUs to be funded by Home Depot with a $10,000
grant to construct a rain garden on campus. 
Howard University recently completed a rain garden funded by a $10,000 grant from the national Home Depot Retool Your School competition. The University was among 10 Historically Black Colleges and Universities selected by a Home Depot selection panel as well as online voting.

The proposed project had to provide lasting impact on the campus and be “green.”   The University’s proposal was for the construction of “rain gardens” at strategic locations on campus.  The first installation was completed during the fall earth day festivities and is located behind the Blackburn Center. 

“The location was selected because it would have lasting aesthetic impact which can be appreciated by the student body as they visit the Blackburn Center, particularly the dining areas,” said Alfonzye Chisholm Jr., AIA, director of Capital Planning

 It is designed in an area that collects a substantial amount of rainwater run off.  Four large perforated 10-gallon water collection containers were installed underground within the area of the garden in addition to the gravel sub-bed.  This allows increased water collection capacity and minimizes flooding of the garden during heavy rainstorms.  The water collected will also enhance the growth of the native plants in the garden.  New solar lighting and benches constructed of recycled material will soon be installed to complete this truly “green project.”    

To learn more about rain gardens please visit:

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