Why rain gardens in Waterloo?

Lake Waterloo  is aging prematurely. Nutrients flowing in, such as phosphorus minerals, are the main cause of its eutrophication. Rain garden are an effective and simple solution which helps slowing down the aging process, for they are capable of filtering capturing the  stormwater runoff carrying these nutrients.

The  restoration project of lake Waterloo, according to the bioretention concept, is an integral part of the Friends of les Ami(e)s du bassin versant du lac Waterloo (ABVLW) mission to restore the health of the lake and enhance its watershed.

The ABVLW has been trying since 1984 to slow down the decade long phenomenon of lake waterloo’s accelerated aging process using various ways to improve its phosphorus concentration. It is worth mentioning that the North Yamaska river which flows out of lake waterloo, is a source of potable water for the  66,000 residents of the city of Granby, as well as for the 260, 000 residents of its watershed territory.

For example, The bioretention area (rain gardens) project proposed by the ABVLW is another means by which the phosphorus mineral , which  contributes to the accelerated aging of the lake, can be  reduced. In order for this project to be effective and to produce a real impact on the lake’s health, a sufficient number of rain gardens must be set up on both residential and municipal land. Citizen mobilization is therefore a major element of this project.

A Rain Gardens conference which was organized by the ABVLW and the City of Waterloo on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 at the Maison de la culture de Waterloo. The event’s keynote speaker is biologist Jean-François Martel of the Regroupement des associations pour la protection de l’environnement des lacs et des bassins versants (RAPPEL)

The Sherbrooke University, first in civil engineering design in Canada.

Three civil engineering graduates from the University of Sherbrooke were short listed and won first place at the national Capstone project competition. This major competition takes place at the annual conference of the Canadian Society of Civil Engineering (CSCE), which was held in 2017 in Fredericton, New Brunswick from June 13 to 16 in 2017. The student team of Alice Boisvert-Chapdelaine, Virginie Simard and Justine Sirois, approached the Friends of  Les Amis du bassin versant du lac Waterloo (ABVLW) proposing to analyse and design the implementation of bioretention areas, rain gardens. The idea was welcomed because this project can help purify and slowdown the stormwater runoff, reducing along the way the eutrophication problem of Lake Waterloo in the Eastern Townships.

Restauration of Lake Waterloo by creating bioretention areas (final report, December 15th 2017)