Mount Vernon Governmental Center adds rain gardens for stormwater management


Four-and-a-half years after former Fairfax County Tree Commission Chair Cathy Ledec and a group of volunteers transformed the Mount Vernon Governmental Center’s surroundings from turf to a native landscape, the facility is getting ready to debut its next phase of sustainability — new rain gardens and other stormwater best management practices (BMPs).

Construction of the stormwater rain gardens began last May with the removal of trees that were in decline or unable to survive project construction, according to Mount Vernon District Supervisor Dan Storck’s office. Over the following months, contractor Environmental Quality Resources LLC worked with Fairfax County’s Stormwater Planning Division to perform soil stabilization, implement new BMPs or retrofits to provide pollutant removal, and rehabilitate parking lot curbs and gutters. Now, the grounds around the governmental center are being replanted with native trees and plants.

The stormwater project also took place behind Sherwood Hall Library and along part of Holland Road.

New tree and shrub plantings along Holland Road

Storck, an environmental advocate who has been a champion of natural landscaping at county facilities, is looking forward to better managing stormwater at his office headquarters.

“Every single bit of what we can do to reduce runoff from our properties is a benefit to the community in reducing flooding — but also to the [Chesapeake] Bay in terms of less sediment and nitrogen,” he said.

The construction project is expected to be substantially complete by mid-November.

Mount Vernon Governmental Center is located at 2511 Parkers Lane in Alexandria.

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