A Comparison

Portland Raingardens:


Ballard Raingardens:

Key points:

In Portland,

  • No signs
  • Variety of vegetation
  • Less shallow “pits”
  • No standing water.

Same function.


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10 responses to “A Comparison

  1. Steve

    Well if we have to have them, at least do them correctly like in Portland, gently curved curbs & the lack of signs really helps out the looks incredibly.
    The ‘ditch ‘ factor we have also looks like crap. I seriously, drive or walk through our neiborhood and shake my head in amazment on how terrible our street looks now.

  2. Teamstrannon

    This is a great example of what a raingarden should and shouldn’t look like. I recently visited a friends home in Ballard and got my high heel shoes soaked when I stepped out of the car onto the sidewalk. In the dark I didn’t know why it was so wet when there hadn’t been a drop of rain in Seattle for days. Upon closer inspection I saw a GIANT mud puddle. A little research on what it was for floored me. The Ballard raingardens are a danger to kids, adults and will just attract mosquitos if not handled correctly. We must learn from our Portland neighbors on how to do this safely.

  3. I agree with the angst over the look of some Ballard raingardens, but Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither were the Portland raingardens. I own property on 28th NW and I want a raingarden that looks like Portland’s. Let’s develop a positive attitude and work together to make our city more beautiful than Portland’s.

    • LM

      As a resident on one of these streets with the Raingardens, we have been positive and worked very hard for months to get the city to cooperate with us to improve the look and function of these ponds, but we’re not getting any help from them and in fact at times they have been downright nasty. 😦 What can we do?

  4. Steve

    I am all for working together on this in a positive way but the fact is the rain gardens will not drain in this area with the way the gound is. We can change them to look pretty & hopefully take out these signs but the water will still not soak into the soil at a fast enough rate to eliminate the swamp atmosphere .

  5. JB

    As a resident on 29th Ave NW and directly affected by the rain gardens, I can only report that we have collectively demonstrated a “positive” attitude to varying levels of the city chain of command that is responsible. There have been many emails, phone calls, and meetings to work on the issues, we are still in the same boat. It is obvious to me at any rate that the city does not want to budge on these issues, and we are stuck. It is going to take much more that a “positive” attitude to effect change.

    • Mark Early

      At Saturday’s (1/29/11) Open House event at Seattle City Hall I spoke with my friend and Seattle City Councilmember Nick Licata regarding the situation with our Ballard RainGardens. This was the first he had heard of the issue. Nick said he would speak with Councilmember Mike Obrien, chair of the Seattle Public Utilities committee about it. I also asked Nick to point me in the right direction regarding the cost to the city for this project. At the City Hall Open House SPU outreach desk I filled out a question response form with my contact info and a request to SPU for information regarding the cost of the Ballard RainGardens.

      Has anyone else on this blog contacted Councilmember Mike Obrien’s office?

      What have others heard regarding project costs and also mitigation?

      It would be helpful at the upcoming Tuesday community meeting to have very specific information citing contacts with City Government around this issue. Who, When, What, Where … did people talk to the city and what was the specific response to the best of your recollection?

      We can be constructively “positive”, however it takes both a willing cooperative partner AND specific accurate information to move forward.

  6. ebr

    The rain gardens in Oregon are not working. The word was out shortly before they broke ground in Ballard. This came from an inside source at the City of Seattle. The best advice is: If you want this over with, have them restored to what they were, and buy your own landscaping. There is no need to further waste our tax dollars.

    • Steve

      Right on the money ebr, restore them & let us replant, do not waste any more of our money on this project.

    • Mark Early

      It would be great to have more information about Portland’s experience with RainGardens, specifically from your contact inside Seattle City Gov. Can this person email you any Portland generated reports on the failure there?

      A relative of mine lives in Portland and I will ask if they can remember anything surfacing (no pun intended) in the local media regarding RainGardens.

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