Sunnyside Park in Pointe-Claire, Que., will soon have a new rain garden for residents to enjoy.
Work crews began the preliminary work clearing the lot for the city’s new rain collection project on Tuesday.
The city is installing what they describe as a new ecological and environmentally-friendly drainage system, which diverts rainwater from the oversaturated ground using gravity and vegetation.
Already fenced off, the garden will be placed in the western portion of the park near the corner of Coolbreeze Avenue and Belmont Street.
“All the water from the area drains into this particular gully and the walking paths are continuously underwater,” Mayor John Belvedere said.
A natural valley, Sunnyside Park’s walking trails are often covered by water during the spring and fall.
The city says the creation of the garden will help mitigate that by retaining most of the water.
Belvedere says the issue of stagnant water in the park has been a problem for years, making it unusable at certain times of the year.
“It’s a well-used park but it couldn’t be used because it was always wet. Now it will be environmentally-friendly and it will be good for the animals in the area,” Belvedere said.
The work will involve excavating the site, creating a natural basin to hold the water paired with drainage pipes that will divert it into the city drains.
The city will also be planting some 2,150 perennials flowers and 180 shrubs as well as multiple trees to assist in the collection process.
A wooden footbridge will also be erected for pedestrians to cross and enjoy the new green space.
“I think that will be very pleasant I think it’s a really nice park, but it could be even better,” Pointe Claire resident Patritia Fortier said.
“This sounds like a really good idea.”
At a cost of $400,000, Belvedere said this is the cheapest way for the city to deal with the seasonal issue.
Alternative plans would involve “costly and drastic “changes to the park connecting it to the current infrastructure, according to Belvedere.
During the work, the sidewalk and street parking along Coolbreeze Avenue that runs the length of the park will be inaccessible.
The intersection of Coolbreeze and Belmont avenues will be closed to traffic from Aug. 16 to 20.
The work is expected to be completed by October.