Binford middle school

*Winner of the Virginia Lakes and Watersheds Association 2019 Dave Pearson Watershed Excellence Award.

Drawing from ideas generated by Binford Middle School students, this rainwater harvesting system was designed working in conjunction with The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay.

Based on calculations for the amount of predicted runoff, a five-trough roman aqueduct was designed to capture the outfall from the roof gutter and help it slowly infiltrate into the planting bed below. The native plantings in the bed filter the runoff to clean out pollutants before the remaining water diverts to the James River via the storm drain. The five troughs, which are perforated to allow drainage, can each contain 52.3 gallons of water (436.8 lbs) at full capacity.

The troughs were fronted with cloud cutouts and set on thin legs to visually mimic a rain squall. Consistent with Binford’s mission of inspiring a love of learning through the arts, the system demonstrates the power of integrating art and science to enact change in your community.

Click through the gallery below to see images of the project from start to finish, or check out the video of the very first storm captured by our rainwater harvesting system.