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    Winners from 2018 SBN Excellence in GSI Awards

    Last Thursday, the Sustainable Business Network’s (SBN) GSI Partners hosted its third annual Excellence in GSI Awards Ceremony.

    Held at FringeArts, this year’s ceremony featured keynote speaker Marc Cammarata, Deputy Water Commissioner for Planning at the Philadelphia Water Department.

    (SBN) GSI Partners is a program created to support the success of Green City, Clean Waters, Philadelphia Water Department’s (PWD) plan to cut down on the stormwater pollution entering the city’s sewer system by 85 percent by 2036.

    The awards celebrate local Green Stormwater Infrastructure initiatives and the partners who make them possible. Read on to learn about the four projects that took home trophies for achievements in three different categories.

    2018 Excellence in GSI Winners

    Category: Public Projects

    Winner: Linwood Park

     Thanks to an Open Space Grant from Montgomery County, as well as support from neighbors and local institutions, the township of Ardmore transformed a one-acre private parking lot into a thriving park. The space isn’t just for relaxation and play — it also boasts natural clean water tools, including two dry streams and a landform that directs stormwater runoff. With regular artistic and educational events, the now-finished Linwood Park is a hub for the community.

    Category: Private Projects

    Winner: College Settlement

    This summer camp aims to give children from the Greater Philadelphia area a lifelong appreciation for the environment. That’s why it recently spearheaded a renovation to its grounds in order to protect a tributary of the Pennypack Creek from untreated stormwater runoff. The changes included the creation of stormwater wetlands that reduces runoff, while also addressing erosion issues and the growth of non-indigenous plant species. Most importantly, this site serves as an education tool for campers, teaching them about ecosystems and local flora and fauna.

    Category: Innovation

    Winners: Cira Green and Parcel Viewer

    Cira Green, Philly’s first elevated public park, provides an outdoor space to enjoy views of the city, while also utilizing cutting-edge stormwater management tools. Its green roofs, permeable paving, and “pancake cisterns” make up an extensive strategy that sets a new standard for other urban green spaces.

    Tech company Azavea has developed three stormwater management software tools for PWD: Parcel Viewer, Credits Explorer, and The Greened Acre Retrofit Program (GARP) Aggregator-Property Manager. Respectively, these web applications help PWD maintain a transparent stormwater billing system to non-residential properties, show the public how to cut costs by implementing stormwater management tools, and assist companies in planning large-scale stormwater retrofit programs. This innovative tech has inspired similar services in municipalities across the country.

     

     

     

    Brianna Baker

    About Brianna Baker

    Brianna is a senior journalism major Temple University. While studying abroad in Fall 2017, she interned at WHERE Rome magazine, and has also worked for Baltimore STYLE, QWERTY Philly, and student publications like Templar, The Temple News and 14th Street. In addition to writing, she loves re-watching her favorite sitcoms, going to concerts, and doing yoga (when she’s not feeling too lazy).

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