A “Greening Schools” project is underway in Baltimore. Several acres of asphalt will be replaced by lawns and gardens at seven schools, providing an opportunity for students to study the environment while meeting regulatory requirements to reduce stormwater runoff and improve water quality.
Dewberry (Baltimore), an engineering and architectural firm, is working with the city on the pilot program, which is being funded in part through a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
The project will remove asphalt; install playground equipment; and plant trees, lawns, and gardens. Students contribute to the design by creating “time gardens,” reading areas and butterfly gardens.
Gilmor Elementary School, Baltimore, was the first school renovated. Almost half an acre of asphalt has been removed. City officials joined students and faculty for a tree-planting ceremony at the school last June.
Consultants on the project include Progressive Engineering (Columbia, Md.) and Chesapeake Environmental Management (Bel Air, Md.).