Aqua.Street.Scapes: Interpreting Natural Hydrologic Processes while Enhancing the Urban Streetscape
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This project proposes a new urban aquifer strategy that utilizes stormwater to create a cascading plaza and an improved 'great street' in Washington DC. A system of urban aquifers is developed beneath the surface of the street, perched atop the compacted, impermeable soils below. This set of aquifers prevents stormwater from entering the existing combined sewer and allows trees to draw water from this new groundwater source and develop expansive root systems. On the surface, stormwater flows through interconnected planters where it irrigates and is filtered by vegetation before infiltrating to recharge the aquifer. At Cascade Plaza, sloping topography intersects the aquifer, and the new groundwater seeps out of the plaza steps, turning them into a miniature cascade, by gravity and water pressure alone. It collects in a web of runnels, pools at the lowest point, and overflows in high water, mysteriously disappearing below ground again to fill an underground reservoir. In this unique ecological system, water flows both above and below ground to mitigate excess stormwater and make the street and plaza more beautiful.
- Masters Theses 
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