District 113 Recognized for Stormwater Projects, Student Stewardship

The Lake County Stormwater Management Commission recognized Highland Park High School's district during on Nov. 8 in Libertyville.

The information below comes from District 113.

The Lake County Stormwater Management Commission (SMC) recognized Township High School District 113 during its 7th Annual Stormwater Awards on November 8 in Libertyville. The District’s four stormwater management projects and student involvement in those projects were awarded the 2012 “Best Management Practice Project of the Year” award. 

“The District has taken a proactive approach to enhancing the natural resource potential on their property holdings benefiting the North Branch of the Chicago River watershed, and using the projects as a tool for engaging students and encouraging stewardship,” said Mike Warner, SMC executive director. 

Starting in 2000 the District undertook a three phased stream restoration project along the Middle Fork, a tributary to the North Branch, to improve water quality. The District obtained grants and additional funding sources aided by the SMC, and nearly 3000 hours of labor contributed by students and staff.

In 2011, the District completed its athletic field improvements and water resource enhancement project. A bio swale, bio-retention areas, and restoration and enhancement of remnant woods and wetlands were among the improvements to improve water quality and increase flood storage. 

The District recently applied for grant funding through SMC to convert over 72,000 square feet of asphalt parking areas to permeable pavement at Wolters Field. All the projects serve as an outdoor classroom engaging students and staff and encouraging watershed stewardship.  

Receiving the award were District Assistant Superintendent Barry Bolek, Director of Facilities Paul Mocogni, Board of Education member Bonnie Shlensky; Director of Communications Natalie Kaplan; project engineers Daniel Creaney and Bob Hansen, Daniel Creaney Company; Natalie Heidi Natura, Living Habitats.  

Since 2006, SMC has recognized the efforts of individuals, local governments, groups, and projects reflecting SMC mission of flood damage reduction, protection and restoration of Lake County’s natural resources, and water quality improvements. Other 2012 recipients included Barbara Waller, Director, Cool Learning Experience, First Baptist Church, Waukegan; Wes Welsh, Public Works Director, Village of Lindenhurst; Village of North Barrington; and the Center for Watershed Protection, Ellicott City, MD. Outgoing commissioners Steve Mountsier, Anne Flanigan Bassi, and Melinda Bush were also recognized. 

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